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bill440rt 03-13-2011 12:16 AM

1500 or 2500? PLEASE Help a New Member!
Hello all. I just joined the forum, but have owned a few Rams over the years. I'm hoping someone out there could help me, please.

I am looking to purchase a new Ram for 2011, & am having trouble deciding whether I should get the 1500 or 2500. I primarily use it for transportation & occasional hauling & towing. I tow a 24-foot Wells Cargo enclosed car trailer with a car inside ('68 Charger), maybe 2-4x per year, max. I still want to tow safely, when I do. The trailer has electric trailer brakes, & I use 1000lb weight distribution bars. The car weighs approx 4000lbs, the trailer curb weight is around 3500. Any long-distance towing would be done in under a 6hr trip, max.

Bought my first Ram new in '98: Quad-cab Laramie 4x4 shortbed with the 5.9, 3:55 axle ratio. Towing capacity, if I remember correctly, was around 8400lbs. It pulled it OK, but struggled a bit on hills due to the 3:55's.

Next came a '97 Ram 2500 Quad-cab Laramie 4x4 shortbed, with a Hemi & 4:10's. MUCH better towing! Towing capacty on that truck was 10,850. Really towed nicely, but it turned out to be a lemon (don't ask) & I got rid of it under the NJ Lemon Law.

So... I am looking at another Hemi-powered Laramie 4x4 shortbed. If I go with the 1500, it will be the Quad-cab 4x4 shortbed with 3:92 gears & I was thinking the 20" wheels. If I'm reading correctly the towing capacity on that truck is 10,050 lbs. If I go with the the 2500, it would be the Crew-cab shortbed 4x4 with 4:10 gears. The towing capacity on the 2500 equipped like that is 11,600 lbs.

Do I need the extra power of the 2011 2500, or will the 2011 1500 handle it OK? The towing capacity on the 1500 seems only 800 lbs less than my old '97 2500, which towed great. My local dealer seems to think the 1500 will do fine, but then again that's coming from a dealer.
The only thing that's swaying me to a 1500 is that the incentives right now are really good vs the 2500. I just don't know 100% if it'll do the job.

Sorry for the long rant. Anyone have any input??

sk8noregon 03-13-2011 12:22 AM

Hello, for that kind of towing I would go with the 2500 IMO. Good Luck !

Krpto1973 03-13-2011 12:27 AM

I would go with the 2500 as well. Last thing you want is a truck that can't do the job. Not to mention there is a post going around right now from a guy who bought a 1500 that does not tow the way he wants, and is quite pissed off. I am sure he will chime in shortly.

Go with the 2500, cause you just never know. Maybe they will let you test drive one with the trailer attached. I have done that before.

erm 03-13-2011 12:29 AM

I think the 1500 will do fine. You are talking a 7500# total tow which is under the max by quite a bit. Equip it with the load leveling bars, I assume you have brakes on the trailer, put a brake controller in the truck and yer good.

My only concern is your tongue weight. Do you know what it is?

You said "extra power" of the 2500. Does the 2500 have the HEMI or the Cummins?

Stangshcky12 03-13-2011 05:16 PM

With they amount of weight you will be fine with a properly equipped 1500
I wouldnt want to drag around the extra weight of a 2500 for occasional towing

terb 03-13-2011 09:35 PM

The Hemi in the 1500 has more HP and torque than the one in the 2500..:doh:

bill440rt 03-13-2011 09:53 PM

Yeah OK, OK.
By "extra power", I should have typed "extra towing/pulling capacity" of the 2500.

I'm looking either truck to be Hemi powered, for the infrequency I tow I can't justify spending the extra $$$ on a Cummings when the gas engine will do what I need it to.

I'm not sure 100% what my tongue weight is, but I had a friend also tow my trailer who was used to towing his open car trailer. Compared to his, he said mine felt very balanced & did not sag his truck down at all. He towed it with an '06 1500 Hemi with 3:92's, his towing capacity was about 8900lbs, similar to my old '98 2500. It was a 3-hour trip, and although it did the job I felt it struggle once in a while. But the new ones have over 10,000lbs capacity.

I've also changed my mind somewhat, as after sitting in the rear seat I'm now considering a crew cab vs the quad cab if I buy a 1500. Not much room in the back of a quad cab, & my kids are getting bigger so I could really use the extra cab vs the extra bed at this point.

Looks like there's about a 50/50 split, similar to what I've been hearing/reading.
Keep 'em coming, I'd like to hear more!

snyds 03-14-2011 09:23 AM

Since you don't tow a heavy load all the time ("two to four times max."), I would save my money and get the 1500 w/ 3.9 gears and 17 inch tires. You can always add something like this if you need a little more towing capacity. This was just a quick search, I'm sure there are better kits out there.

JHamilton 03-14-2011 03:20 PM


Originally Posted by terb (Post 470945)
The Hemi in the 1500 has more HP and torque than the one in the 2500..:doh:

Gassers are tuned differently in HD pick ups. While their overall numbers appear lower, they have a torque curve as flat as a table.

Stangshcky12 03-14-2011 07:29 PM

My dad was looking at crew cabs since we're all "getting bigger" haha till I talked him into a quad cab. For the extra $3k I dont think its worth it for a cooler and a shorter bed, but he also will use the extra bed length more. My 24 yr. old brother is 6"2' and is more then comfortable in the back seat

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