Video: Ram's Chief Engineer Talks EcoDiesel

Ram EcoDiesel II

With so many requests for information and access to more details about Ram Truck's new EcoDiesel engine, it's no wonder chief engineer Mike Cairns is trying to deliver as much information as possible with a new YouTube video. We're told this is likely to be the first in a series of more detailed videos to help deliver more technical information about the new engine to as many enthusiasts and diesel novices as possible.

Cairns starts by posing the question he says he's been getting for years (and we can vouch for that since we'd been asking him that question for a long time): "Why don't you put a diesel in a half-ton truck?" Oddly, he doesn't answer the question in this video but does say that the 2014 Ram 1500 will offer the 3.0-liter V-6 EcoDiesel option later this year as a 2014 model.

Of course, if he had answered the question, we would have heard, yet again, that Ram was skeptical about keeping the cost down and that customer interest has never been high. Apparently now that Chrysler has Jeep (Grand Cherokee) and Dodge (possibly the Durango) vehicles to spread the costs over, all that's changed.

The added cost of the EcoDiesel will be just less than $3,000 (which comes standard with the lighter-duty ZF eight-speed transmission) when compared to the 5.7-liter Hemi V-8 option, which comes standard with the carryover Chrysler 65RFE transmission. Look for more information about EPA and real-world fuel economy numbers at a later date. All we know for now is that the aluminum-head 24-valve turbo-diesel will get highway mileage at or above 30 mpg.

Our favorite feature, beyond the strong pulling power right off idle? We love the fact that the new Ram EcoDiesel will be the first vehicle to offer a dedicated real-time exhaust fluid readout alongside all the other important gauges.

 

Ram EcoDiesel II
Ram DEF gauge II

 

Comments

it will be interesting to see the performance characteristics of this powertrain...

way to steal the thunder from GM, RAM!!!!! All we hear about now is the new 1/2 ton diesel, and nothing about the GM twins anymore, can't wait for these to hit the lots

Sorry Ram you're about 10 years too late.
Diesel is old technology and in my state diesel costs 40 cents more per gallon and that's to say nothing of emissions fluid.

It's time we start talking PHEV and fuel cell.

Forget the 240hp diesel V6. That is should be a two year flash in the pan.
Where is direct injection for the 3.6 V6 "pentastar"? 320hp - and forget the torque.
and where is the 400hp direct injection twin-turbo V6?
There need not be any V8 engine in a 1500 'half-ton' pickup truck.
and what about extending the ZF 8 speed automatic into a 9 speed? For 2016 model year...

ram will have a huge hit with this truck If they offer it in entry level as well as top notch trim levels.

If ford had offered the ecoboost in every trim level the take rate for the ecoboost would be better then 80 %.If ram plays this right and doesn't just offer this diesel in full blinged out trucks it could shake the truck market

Only a simple brained person would think that paying 10% more for fuel would be worse then getting 36% (admittedly that number does drops to ONLY 34% when factoring urea) better fuel economy.

George, why pay more for engines that don't have as much power and get much worse FE?

Isn't it funny how Ram used to be the one that always seemed to be playing catch up to Ford and GM. Now they are leading those two and offer the most advanced, high MPH, smoothest riding trucks on the market! I wonder what the big brass over at GM is thinking when they introduced a totally brand new truck and all they offer for new tech on their trucks is a resurrected 4.3 v6 and corner steps on the back bumper, while the ram has introduced new motors, trannies, suspension options, class leading towing, award winning interior as well as a lot of other new innovations! I would think they've got to be feeling pretty stupid that they've been totally out done by Ram and Ram keeps stealing the spot light away from their new trucks! LOL

It'll be interesting to see what Ford introduces next year when they reveal the new F-150? I think they'll try to come back with something to out do Ram..... the only question is, what new tech will they bring to the table??

Ram needs a new V8 Gasser, the Hemi uses old school technology. A nice new 5.0 with direct injection, VVT, would work much better with the new eight speed tranny and be much more efficiant.

I can't watch the video at work but the commentary appears to be wrong. The new diesel has to use the higher rated 8-speed since the one paired to the Pentastar V-6 can't handle the torque of the diesel or Hemi. I also doubt the 30 mpg claim unless there are some active aero tricks that aren't on the existing truck. I'd be ok with 28 mpg highway and something around 20 city if it had the payload to back it up. Instead of active aero spend the money on 1mm larger coils to give it another 400 lbs of capacity or something.

I am looking for a reason to choose this truck but if it can't handle my needs it doesn't work. :(

I hope he isn't BS'ing us with the late '13 release date. I have about zero confidence in this occurring however since the Hemi 8 speeds took forever to get out there and the diesel grand cherokee still has yet to make it to dealerships.

@Ramfan

Dodge introduced new engines? They took a car V6 and slapped it in their truck to "catch up" and their Hemi hasn't changed much since it came out with exception to a little massaging of the heads, tuning and VVT. Yep, leading edge. They are taking a nice risk (I give them props) using a GM designed diesel. Utilizing an air suspension out of their CUV jeep line doesn't help their "truck" cause either.

GM thoroughly redesigned all their truck engines specifically for truck use, did dodge? Dodge does have a nice car like interior, but it again doesn't cater to truck people but to more the luxury car I drove doesn't fit my tough image anymore so I need a "truck" but has to ride and act like my luxury car buyer needs now. I don't care if it has the lowest towing/hauling #'s (which is does) as i am not going to use it but for commuting to a from work.

We will see if even after the "big HD update" if the cummins can even match the duramax even with their now inflated #'s. they got slapped pretty silly in the last hurt locker test, I don't even think this update is enough to pass the big boys. Good luck though!

Yeah, keep it up!

Is that a crew cab 6.4-foot bed I see? If it is, it's about time!

Tyler, the pentastar V6 is from a car but guess what it works perfectly fine in a truck for someone like me that uses their truck to commute to work during the week and haul around a fishing boat on the weekend along with perform runs to Home Depot for Mulch and Shrubs.

@Hank That is the same as a car based Ute in Australia.

@Rick,

Nothing wrong with a HEMI,actually pushrod engines are more reliable,look at the trouble with Fords /Toyota cammer engines and other so-called new tech engines,fact is pushrods are the best for reliability,power,and gas mileage..Hemi'Ram beats them all in real world.

Dodge had a dohc V-8,it was the 4.7,new tech and it couldnt beat the hemi in performance or gas mileage,even the high tech Pentastar a modern new tech engine you want,doesnt beat it in performance and real world gas mileage is the same,pound per pound.

@Tyler,

Ford,GM,Toyota all take car engines and slap them in their trucks.Eco-Boost is a car engine.

The RAM 5.7 Hemi is a bit different then the car (look at the hp and torque)Look at GM the same ol dog 5.3 is still used,HEMI is refinned more,better performance and real world mpg.

The H.D RAM 6.4 is different then the 6.4 used in the SRT line-up.Its designed for truck use.

Your interior comment is funny,RAM has several trim levels,but yeah,they do have a nice luxurious interior as trucks did since the 60's with top line trim levels.


Your ignorance is bliss !

@Ramfan,

Since 1994 RAM always was ahead of Ford and GM,even in the late 30's the Power Wagon was the first 4x4,first fulltime 4wd in the 70's.Dodge had the first muscle truck in the early 60's.Dodge always was ahead...GM/Ford were just priced lower,thus higher sales..

@ anyone making comments about the Ecoboost or any F150 Engine. The design & testing gone in these motors is unparalelled by anyone Chevy or Dodge. The Ecoboost went into an F150 for testing in 2007. They hit the F150 Market in 2011, thats a lot of time to get glitches related to the F150 Ecoboost. Please look into what your claiming before you start spreading uneducated claims. It just makes you look stupid. There have been issues with the Engine management system and thats it!!!

Truck price,fuel price,pull your trailer,life engine,compare to a gas pickup,,,the diesel pickup keep is price better..expensive to get but you win in the long run....

This truck can't come fast enough. I had a drive of the 2007 Grand Cherokee CRD the other day with the Mercedes engine and 5 speed auto. It has less power and torque than this new beast. Went over the Teton pass to Jackson, did some overtaking, it was plenty of fun to drive.

@ mechanic

what in the world are you talking about??????????? what Toyota has a car engine in it? NONE! what GM truck has a car engine? NONE! i agree Ford does have car engines in them but your ignorance is bliss as the term you used LOL LOL seriously man wake up

toyota truck.........

Personally, I think the diesel Ram will be a hit and the other manufacturers will go scrambling to catch up.

The article here on PUTC a month ago about the rising costs of pickups show that people are prepared to spend extra on a pickup. The other misconception is the pickup crowd are conservative and will not take to change easily.

Well, if that was the case you wouldn't have the multitude of models, so everyone can say "look at me, I'm different".

Also, diesel fits right into the truck image.

I've seen much 'talk' here about costs of gas vs diesel, but if costs are such a huge influence everyone would be driving V6 base model pickups and the mid-high end V8 dual cab market would be small.

Diesels will sell because they will offer most of what a V6 or V8 can offer but with great economy. That's why most large vehicles globally run diesel.

Sandman 4x4 you made a statement that a real truck only has 2 doors. But like here, most dual cabs utes/pickups aren't used as trucks, they are © pickups with a balcony, SUV alternatives, lifestyle vehicles.

I just hope Fiat/Ram doesn't screw the release of this diesel Ram. They do seem to take forever to bring a product on line.

@mechanic

So only ram does not use a car engine based on it having different numbers than the cars its in?

By your theory the eco-boost is a truck engine cuz it also has different numbers of hp/tq than the taurus and flex.

An engine used in a car first does not make it a car engine. It makes it an engine with peak torque and hp numbers in a place ideal for its intended purpose and weight planned to move.

Need to use that engine in a different platform like mustang to f150 for example with 5.0. They changed the air intake manifold, intake cams, compression ratio and exhaust manifolds. Now i guess you'd call that a car engine in a truck but its design has been changed to allow for an ideal setup with reliability in mind to move a vehicle twice the weight of the previous application.

Nothing wrong with that.

An engine is an engine. They are made of interchangeable parts. No manufacturer selling vehicles in N.A. is going to slap an engine not capable of the task intended in a vehicle especially in a half-ton truck which is a work vehicle in a very competitive market.

I'm on the fence as to whether or not this will be a hit or not. If you look at it economically it really does not work. On the other hand, most guys driving 3/4 and 1 ton diesels don't need them either.

The biggest question I have is, you're in a Dodge dealership and looking at a $45K 1/2 ton diesel and right next to it is a 3/4 ton Cummins diesel for $50K what are you going to choose? I believe 9 times out of 10 the customer is going for the 3/4 ton.

This could be a huge seller for them but, I could see how they it might bomb big time too. The use of a foreign diesel may have a big impact with truck customers too.

The other big negative is GM and Ford don't seem to be working towards this either. With the millions they spend on market research I'd say they might know something.

@Jack
I just sold my 2500 cummins to get one of these. There are many people that will give up a few thousand pounds of towing capacity to get the better mileage and cheaper maintenance of a half ton diesel.

Ford did what it always does. They produced the cheapest junk they felt they could be competitive with. They had the Lion v8 diesel in development around the same time they were cooking up the ecoboost. Cost won out. I don't own one, but i've heard that the eco boost isn't all its cracked up to be, in both towing and mileage.

A large portion of GM is owned by the federal government. If the epa policies on diesels are any indication, GM probably won't have a diesel half ton any time soon. That is, unless this ram is a big hit. I think it will be.

Lol, Tyler said inflated towing numbers. Maybe he never realized GM likes to inflate? Like saying a 5.3 can out tow an Ecoboost, lol. With the same gears! Lol! Yeah Tyler, GM and Ford don't have inflated numbers at all (shakes head!)

Since that last shootout had points for payload, wish they'd run them at max! We would all still be laughing...we, those that realize Ford and GMs numbers are bs, so is the Ram 6 speed numbers to be honest. But atleast they don't rate them past the Evoboost for the hell of it.

Atleast the Ram does what it's rated to do quite easy. Anything a 3.42 geared 6 speed 5.3 will do a 3.55 Ram will do better ( second highest gear offered to the 3.92, likewise how a 3.42 GM is to a 3.73) but a 3.92 Ram will outpull anything 5.3 with ease. Get 3.21s and a hemi 8 speed, it will outpull your OVERRATED 5.3 with 3.42. Lol...GM!

And whoever said they tested the Egoboost since 2007: they must not have been paying attention, cause they are crapping out already!

I'm in the same boat as Fauklin. I have no use for a 2500/3500 class personal truck. They don't fit in my garage and my heaviest personal trailer is under 10,000lbs.

However, I still buy diesels, as I have diesel tanks in my equipment yard for our other vehicles. This makes refilling much more convenient and I save a little money on fuel costs.

I know many other people in the same boat. They would rather own a diesel, but they prefer the size and comfort of a half ton truck, vs the larger and harder riding HD trucks.

Personally, I'm waiting to see if Ford puts the 3.2L I5 diesel in an Expedition/F150, but if they don't, this Ram will likely be my next truck.

As for the realease of the 8 speed, they said it would be out in Spring and IT WAS! Unless your name is Lou and you live in the boonies....last I checkef, March and April are in Spring.

@Fauklin
Ford also have the 5 cylinder 3.2 Duratorque.

This engine is more 'trucklike' in that it is under square. The Lion is oversquare, like this VM going into the Ram.

Many of the V6 diesels were designed to be used in Euro prestige cars. I'm not saying these engines are not good in a Ram.

The 3.2 Duratorque was designed to be used as a commercial diesel from the onset. I think this is a better proposition than the Lion in the F-150. The Duratorque will be a more robust engine and manufacturing costs will be less.

Most of the larger 4 cylinder diesels (about 3 litres) are also designed as light commercial diesels.

I will bet Ford will have a 3.2 Duratorque very soon.

The argument of why would you buy a 1500 Ram diesel and not a HD is quite simple. Why do people buy a Focus and not a 300.

This idea that a pickup has to be larger to be better has no real basis. Any vehicle irrespective of size can be good.

Its up to the purchaser to choose what he wants.

@Fauklin

You can keep your conspiracy theories but, I have my doubts. I think if a 1/2 ton diesel market were there Ford and GM would already have them. Especially back in the early 2000's when diesel was cheaper then gas.

IMO there could be a market for diesels in a compact pickup but even there I don't know.

Who ever said not an economical choise, HAHAHA.

If prices of gas and diesel stay about the same this engine, in most places, will pay for itself in 90,000 miles. To most people that is about six years.

Guess how much more a 6 six year old pre owned diesel vehicle costs then it's gas counterparts? According to kbb.com 10%-15% more.

So for a pickup that is approx. $4000 dollars, that's right, it is approx. $4000 cheaper to operate a diesel pickup for 6 years then a gas.

LOLOLOL!!! Tyler IS a MORON. GovtMotors uses the SAME Chevrolet Smallblock from the Chevrolet Corvette, Chevrolet Camaro AND Chevrolet SS for the Chevrolet Silverado AND Govt. Motors very own GovtMoCo Sierra!!! A Chevrolet CAR ENGINE. It HAS Been SINCE 1955 Screwball. NO Different than what Ford or Dodge do!! And Dodge's Truck interior has received FAR more praise than Either Chevrolet's OR GovtMoCo's.

@Mechanic, AMEN.

@ASE Certified
I really think to cost of gas vs diesel fuel is a misnomer.

If people were that concerned about the price of fuel, V8 pickups would be few and far between.

I think the diesel Ram is a gusty move by Fiat and I hope it pans out. I think it will.

@Liam: Yes, that's a crew cab 6.4-foot. They're new for 2013, but I only just saw a few at a dealership in SD a few weeks ago. Ford was the first way back in 2006, and now that GMC/Chevy is offering a CC 6.5-foot on the new '14s and Nissan (apparently) will be offering one on their 2015 model, it's now up to Toyota to put out a CrewMax 6.5' box before they get left in the dust.

why would you want a new diesel. in any form. they are very problamatic with all the emmision crap on them. i wouldnt buy any diesel pickup past model year 05. and that pushing it. just isnt worth it anymore

GM doesn't have to play catch-up. They've had a light duty diesel engine ready for a few years now.

If this government furlough ever ends I'll be sitting with money in hand at the dealer to buy one of these. Way to go Dodge! This really is the best of all worlds wrapped up in this one pickup.

@Dan, so more torque than the Hemi @ half the rpm than the Hemi's peak, with 10 more miles for every gallon it uses. Just doesn't cut it for you hey? That baffles me!

@dan

We've got a bunch of Ford 6.7L and Cummins 6.7L diesels and so far, they've been some of the most reliable diesels we've ever had. We've had better luck with them than the 7.3L powerstrokes we have in our vans. Not to mention they're faster, ride better, are a lot quieter, and a lot cleaner.

There is definitely a little bit of a learning curve with them, as maintenance is a bit different from older trucks (like the Ford's use a non-nitrate based coolant now, so adding the wrong coolant can be bad), but if you do what you're supposed to we've seen very few issues.

@kemo, who cares what they have done in development, if it is not produced and marketed, what good is it to anyone?

@Dan
You wrote;
"why would you want a new diesel. in any form. they are very problamatic with all the emmision crap on them. i wouldnt buy any diesel pickup past model year 05. and that pushing it. just isnt worth it anymore"

................................................................................................................................................................................

Can you provide a link proving that diesels are more problematic? Have a link with a direct comparison between the two.

I think you'll find gas engines are more problematic. We use diesels almost exclusively up here in the Outback. Why? Because they are less problematic.

These diesels are all high output modern common rails as well.

Don't allow your confusion/bais for gas to be translated into 'untruths' about diesel. All you have to say is I prefer gas, not bring bull$hit logic into it. You only make a goose of yourself.

Why do you think large trucking companies use diesel, because they are problematic?

Dan has a point. The newer diesels with all of the new emissions requirements compare poorly to the earlier models.

Anecdotal for sure, but family's construction company has used nothing but Cummins Rams since they came out. The newest model is a 2007--and it is a complete POS that got abysmal MPG before doing a DPF delete--which the dealer threatened could have warranty implications when it was done. It has also flat out had more problems in general than its predecessors.

The 2001 5.9 HO with the 6-spd manual before it was a great pickup.

The new one has been so bad that my dad is considering switching over to Duramax GMs next go around.

@Dav
What are comparing? Read what you wrote.

How can you compare something no one has experienced yet?

I remember a similar situation back when pollution controls and unleaded fuel was brought in.

Power dropped, FE went down, but why?

Just like the diesels you describe the gas engine weren't designed to run the way regulated controls were forcing them to.

In other words the manufacturers haven't invested correctly into the product. The VM going into this Ram is technologically superior to any US designed diesel, except for the new Cummins 2.8 ISF that's going into the Titan.

The US lagged the world with diesel tech in the smaller diesels.

If what you are stating is true, ask yourself why can a European diesel with all of these measures outperform a US diesel?

..."We love the fact that the new Ram EcoDiesel will be the first vehicle to offer a dedicated real-time exhaust fluid readout alongside all the other important gauges."...Earth to Mark Williams, the current Ram HD Cummins has that already, you should know that since you tested one!

@Big Al from Oz Ther has been problems with US. Diesels since 2007, because of the Diesel Emissions. Here is a good info video.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KLsDTW5Y8Ao

This is what happens when the injector sticks on for the Diesel Particulate Filter.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FDyQZishJWw

Diesel ERG problems

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jcaV74zTJh0

ERG normally cost around $319 from Ford plus labor to repair at a shop if you can't, but on this site seems like a good discount.

http://www.fordiesels.com/egr501-egr-cooler/?gclid=CL-NtPiBxbgCFZKi4Aod7HoAdQ

You can delete these from diesel engines but then you pretty much can't legally drive the trucks on the road in most states as it won't pass Inspection.

The cost to replace if the diesel particulate filter on 2007-current GM/Ford/RAM and the new trucks 2011 Duramax / Powerstroke and now 2013 Ram Cummins with diesel exhaust fuel is around $10,000.00 or more.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qooYOae40rY

He starts talking bout the Exhaust System at 2:15, and he say the cost to replace at 5:47.

Emissions and the cost to repair the Emission Equipment is what's keeping a lot of people scare to buy a new diesel I think. I personally would love a Pre 2007 Diesel truck as I could filter used motor/transmission oil, and mix it in with diesel as a way of some free fuel with out the worry of killing the DPF or clogging up a EGR. I would buy a new Diesel if they had a cheaper way to lower Emissions with out the high repair cost, and less chance of frying the engine.

@Johnny Doe
We run DPF as well as the Euro vehicles. I do know we have had some issues and some guys are chipping and deleting as well.

Even my ute has DPF.

But I know the only guys at work who have had these issues are the guys who have chipped their engines or only drive very short distances everyday. Or don't drive the vehicles properly, ie, always revving the engines out.

Another cause is to not allowing the diesel to warm up prior to revving the engines.

So as you can see most of these DPF issues are 'self inflicted' by incorrect usage of a modern diesel.

Not sure why, but time after time on this site, there seems to be this mentality that everybody is hauling around 3/4 the max towing rating of a truck. As Hank pointed out, he (and I... and thousands of others) use our trucks primarily as a replacement for the car. A good 80-90% of the time, it's empty in the bed and lacking anything connected to the hitch. I can't speak for Hank, but his situation seems similar to mine, we buy trucks because we have things we need to occasionally haul with the hitch and occasionally need a bed to put things into (lumber, dirt, furniture, etc.).

I seriously wanted to wait for the new diesel 1500, but didn't want to wait almost a year for it, so I looked at all the 2013 trucks and the RAM 1500 won my hard earned dollars for fuel economy, ride, and what it offered.

The question for GM, who isn't out of the game yet, will be what plans do they have for that Colorado/Canyon? Seems that the truck has entered the realm of the 1500 size wise, and they have stated the power train will be different, so maybe they will put a diesel into that vehicle. If the RAM 1500 diesel is a hit (and I'm thinking it has a great shot at doing so), maybe GM will work faster to get the Colorado/Canyon out the door with a diesel option.

This guy on the video forgot to mention that the new ram has earned the "Prestigious," MOST RECALLS AWARD.



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