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Old 08-20-2013, 09:32 PM   #15
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Tow capacity of 9,200 sounds nice, but payload will be the Achilles heel at 1,650 pounds or so. My 1,200 pound tongue weight would allow just me and the wife and one of two generators with virtually no spare gasoline.....
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Old 08-20-2013, 09:41 PM   #16
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Tow capacity of 9,200 sounds nice, but payload will be the Achilles heel at 1,650 pounds or so.
Precisely my point!
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Old 08-22-2013, 11:57 AM   #17
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Payload "restriction" depends on TW after weight-distribution is factored in.

A 900-lb TW might be from 550-lbs to 675-lbs on the tow vehicle. Or, a 1,200-lb TW from 720-lbs to 900-lbs. There are two TV axles to distribute that remaining weight onto . . . and not everyone carries firewood and a mechanics shop in their pickups, either.

The range of possible TT's, possible loads and possible owners (type of trips, duration, etc) means this 1/2T may well be a good choice for those willing to pay the premium over the Hemi.

TT aero, COG and hitch-rigging all mean more than weight, per se, for getting down the road.

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Old 08-22-2013, 06:50 PM   #18
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Since I've ordered a 2014 Ram 2500 4x4 Laramie with the Cummins 6.7, I've been following the Cummins and RAM forums. The new Ecoboost is not yet available on the 1500, even though production of the 2014's is underway. A lot of very unhappy folks that the Nissan PU will be getting the small Cummins next year. Guess since Fiat "owns" Chrysler they made the corporate decision to put the Italian diesel in the Ram 1500.
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Old 08-22-2013, 11:43 PM   #19
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Since I've ordered a 2014 Ram 2500 4x4 Laramie with the Cummins 6.7, I've been following the Cummins and RAM forums. The new Ecoboost is not yet available on the 1500, even though production of the 2014's is underway. A lot of very unhappy folks that the Nissan PU will be getting the small Cummins next year. Guess since Fiat "owns" Chrysler they made the corporate decision to put the Italian diesel in the Ram 1500.
I think part of the reason they chose the VM Motori V6 is probably a favorable price (given their interest in VM Motori) but a big part is also likely to be inventory and distribution. The VM Motori was also going in a Jeep already, and the V8 Cummins would be wild overkill for a Jeep. The output of the V6 is more than competitive for a half-ton, and having 2 engines instead of 3 benefits Ram/Jeep dealers and manufacturing.

Even at comparable displacements, fewer cylinders generally can result in better fuel economy. With both smaller displacement AND fewer cylinders, I'm guessing the VM Motori engine will return better fuel economy than the V8 Cummins in comparable vehicles, at least in city and highway driving. The extra headroom of the V8 might offer some benefits when towing heavy, though.
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Old 08-23-2013, 08:58 AM   #20
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Big mistake by Chrysler

I think Chrysler has not allowed the bean counters and the marketing folks to communicate properly on this issue. I am certain it will save some money in the short term by putting a VM engine in both vehicles but I think this is a big mistake from a marketing aspect (people who buy trucks). The Cummins engine and name is one of the most highly respected manufactures among pickup truck, industrial equipment and heavy duty truck buyers. In the long run I believe Chrysler would sell many more half ton trucks and made a larger profit because many people buy the Dodge pickup just because it has the Cummins engine.
In North America the average pickup truck driver is familiar with the Cummins name and has no idea who VM Motori is.
Chrysler - you made a big mistake!
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Old 08-23-2013, 09:38 AM   #21
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crispyboy is right. The "needs dentistry" segment we may joke about in re the fascination with vehicles . . but they are cross-linked with those who get things done, but it farming, ranching, trucking, logging and the other commercial uses of light and medium duty trucks. A family of Cummins-powered vehicles would have been better.

CUMMINS not only had a V8-5.6L diesel ready to go just before 2010 (right down to the assembly line at Columbus), but could likely have also done any other cylinder arrangement/displacement engine DODGE could want. New owners screwed this one up. And I say that knowing that no matter how good a VM MOTORI engine may be for those (above) who rely on a big C motored truck one could always choose both Dodge dealers and Cummins dealers for parts/service. They have relatives at both (or friends, neighbors, fellow tech trainees of once upon a time; fellow military service members . . you know, the "invisible" Americans).

It's not so hard to resist a non-work "truck" for a family vehicle when it's Cummins-powered. Same-fuel 5500 and a 1500 can cover a set of family needs for many rural or working types. The relationship of dealer/customer is substantially different than the Daddy/commuter type who trades every 5-years anyway (with next to no concern about op costs or service issues). They far outnumber the RV'ers.

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Old 08-23-2013, 09:41 AM   #22
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We have a 2012 Ram with 5.7 engine 6-spd trans, Propride hitch. Great tow vehicle for our 25' Airstream and a decent daily driver.

I think the new diesel with 8-spd would make things even better, about the same torque but at a lower RPM, slightly better fuel use, and gear range to keep the engine in its best power or economy range. Sounds like a near perfect match for this half ton truck.

As for engine builder, I'm good with the VM Motori diesel. I believe it has been used successfully around the world for some time. The Cummins legend is a straight six, not a new V8.

"Made in America" still matters to me, but who knows any more. Ford builds their new diesel in Mexico, GM's is a Japanese design. Our Ram is Mexico, or most of it. I expect Wal-Mart is about to launch new use-one-year-then-throw-away Chinese cars, like everything else they sell.

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Old 08-23-2013, 09:50 AM   #23
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The Ford diesel is made in Chihuahua . . . need we say more about that picture?

The problem many will have -- an open-ended question -- with that DODGE 1500 is "where to service"?

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Old 08-23-2013, 10:01 AM   #24
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Couldn't a Dodge dealer, anywhere USA service it?

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Old 08-23-2013, 10:11 AM   #25
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Well trained and experienced diesel techs are never easy to find. Not even for big trucks (though it's easier). Yes, I'm sure RAM will have training, etc . . but here where I am a diesel tech making $60k per annum can more than double that by doing big equipment work in the oilfield. My truck will be driven or hauled 250-miles to Houston before I'd let a local "diesel tech" at an auto dealership work on it.

And, a man I work with paid plenty some years back to become a diesel tech. Starting wages were next to minimum wage at independent shops. He took another route. So take your chances with what you can afford (rather, be careful about warranty length and provisions).

Nothing wrong with VM Motori I'm sure . . but it raises questions that a Cummins powered vehicle does not. Downtime means nothing more than incovenience to RV'ers, but $$$ to those dependent on a vehicle being income-producing. Habits of decades arise (in practice, emotionally and otherwise) and keep buyers coming back. They'll overlook a poor HVAC system, for instance. For good reasons no one needing a dependable income-producing pickup with diesel power bought anything but Dodge for more than ten years and it was due to the Cummins being so far superior to the other offerings.

No surprise to me that the used truck I paid $19k for seven years ago is stil worth more than $15k. Being non-emissions is only part of it.

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Old 08-23-2013, 10:35 AM   #26
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Maybe there's some down time on this little diesel, but not something I would expect. Bought our VW diesel 7 years ago and all it's needed is oil changes.

Never used it in the oil fields either, and that may be the difference. Work diesel or recreational diesel service needs.

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Old 08-25-2013, 11:19 AM   #27
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Does your diesel VW serve as a tow vehicle? Is it regularly loaded to payload capacity? Little things tend to show up, then, when the cooling capacity is neared (even if it isn't coolant system related).
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Old 08-25-2013, 09:21 PM   #28
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The 1/2 ton's brakes will not be the same as on the 3/4 ton truck when one closely examines the rotors and the calipers. There is a reason the 3/4 ton has a 20,000+ pound GVW and the brakes are part of the equation.

The displacement of the Italian V6 is less than half of the current in line 6 6.7 liter Cummins. That means it will have less than half of the engine braking capacity of the Cummins when going down a 7% grade.

My modified truck weighs 8,350 pounds fully fueled and before tongue weight of a trailer. When coupled with the new 27FB Classic in January and fully loaded for camping, the rig will cross the scales at close to 19,000 pounds. I want all the stopping power I can get and a 1/2 ton may come up short on the load capacity and stopping power.

You'all be careful out there, here!
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