2017 Ram 2500 Diesel Proves Its Fuel-Economy Prowess

17ram_2500-diesel_so_ac_28jpg_32770426540_o

We know fuel economy is probably not a top priority when purchasing a heavy-duty pickup truck, but that doesn't mean the topic should be ignored entirely. At least that's what we discovered when testing current three-quarter-ton pickups in our 2017 Three-Quarter-Ton Premium Truck Challenge.

For that Challenge, manufacturers sent us their best-optioned diesel-equipped pickups and we put them through a battery of tests, including loaded and unloaded fuel-economy mileage drives.

As you might expect, the smallest diesel engine on the lightest truck did well on the unloaded fuel-economy drive, while the newest, most powerful engines struggled. That meant the 2017 Nissan Titan XD with the 5.0-liter V-8 Cummins engine got the highest empty number (19.3 mpg); however, the heavier (by almost 400 pounds) 2017 Ram 2500 with 6.7-liter inline-six-cylinder Cummins was just a tick behind at 19.2 mpg.

Further, for the loaded fuel-economy drive in which we towed a 10,000-pound trailer over the same route), the Ram was the clear winner over newer, more powerful haulers, achieving a winning 13.1 mpg.

If you average the loaded and unloaded numbers from our fuel-economy test, you'll find that the Ram 2500 with the aging, yet stout, Cummins motor did the best. Newer isn't always better.

Empty/Loaded Average for the Premium Truck Challenge

  • 2017 Chevrolet 2500 LTZ Midnight Edition (6.6-liter V-8 Duramax): 15.1 mpg
  • 2017 Ford F-250 Super Duty King Ranch (6.7-liter V-8 Power Stroke): 15.2 mpg
  • 2017 Nissan Titan XD Platinum Reserve (5.0-liter V-8 Cummins): 15.4 mpg
  • 2017 Ram 2500 Laramie Longhorn (6.7-liter inline-six-cylinder Cummins): 16.2 mpg

Cars.com photos by Angela Conners

 

17ram_2500-diesel_so_ac_54jpg_33111820256_oA

 

Comments

Diesel is not for everybody, but if I was buying a heavy duty rig today for towing the RAM would get my attention.

The RAM dealers are making some deals too.

One of my contractor friends bought a crew cab 2500 a couple of months ago and he's thrilled with the new truck. Got a killer deal too.

Traded his 11 year old F250 diesel for the new RAM and drove away with his RAM 2500 work truck for less than 35k out the door, net after the tradein.

Less power, better fuel economy, it takes fuel to make power

@water

You see to be forgetting something: Efficiency

"We know fuel economy is probably not a top priority when purchasing a heavy-duty pickup truck"

When you own a buisness and have a fleet of trucks and your paying the fuel bill your dam right you consider MPG.

CUMMINS! BULLETPROOF

Legendary cummins!

Less fuel makes less power? Wrong.
Six slugs vs. Eight !!! and it makes more torque. There is a Dyno video of all the Big 3. Its where you start to realize 1 head is better than 2. Longer crank with more main bearings is the way to go. The Cummins High Mileage Club proves it. ( you have to send them pics of your odometer)

Junk and only junk.

@70mopar, There is only one video that I know of that shows the Cummins making more torque than the other two. The only thing that can account for that anomaly is that they did not turn off the traction control on the Ford and the Chevy- causing them to cut fuel and apply the brakes. Torque (and therefore horsepower) is created by moving air through a pump. Two fewer cylinders means that the Cummins has 8 fewer valves to allow air in and out of the pump. Look at the top classes of diesel tractor pulling (Pro Stock, Unlimited Super Stock, Semi trucks), the move is to V8 engines because they move more air and therefore create more power.

I truly wonder how the new Ram's are for build quality. I have several friends with older versions and they all agree that the Cummins is great but the rest of the truck falls apart around the motor.

I have seen some of the newer ones rust around the wheel wells at about 5 years old but the owners claim they are the greatest thing since sliced bread, perhaps they are right??

Chingon I say you're crazy. A 6 cylinder diesel is the way to go bottom line. What do you think is under the hood of all of the on highway rigs? Ok I'll tell you a inline six, rather it's a Cummins, cat, Detroit, Mack, paccar!!! Oh I can keep going power stroke and Duramax are good engines but sorry Cummins is the way to go in the pickup trucks. The V8 Cummins is made light duty for heavy hauling and longevity the inline six is a beast.

Chingon I say you're crazy. A 6 cylinder diesel is the way to go bottom line. What do you think is under the hood of all of the on highway rigs? Ok I'll tell you a inline six, rather it's a Cummins, cat, Detroit, Mack, paccar!!! Oh I can keep going power stroke and Duramax are good engines but sorry Cummins is the way to go in the pickup trucks. The V8 Cummins is made light duty for heavy hauling and longevity the inline six is a beast.

So the Cummins has had really only four generations and two main engine configurations in the last 20+ years. For has had more than for major engine configurations in the last 10 maybe starting with the 7.3. The Cummins is dependable they still have a good number of first gen on the road soaking up the miles and my 13 6.7 uses some of the same parts as the first year 5.9. So those other companies can put out big numbers which rarely are actually seen on a Dyno as true, but I know reliability wise the Cummins is always going to be there. And rarely ever has a weak point

IF I were rich, I would get the Duramax because it is more thought out for the task at hand.

If I were poor, I would get the Cummins, because it is just a bullet proof engine and now with a good transmission in the one-ton.

I I were a bureaucracy(full of dumb and unaccountable people), I would get a Ford, because I would have a good excuse to buy a new vehicle every couple of years when they break down and charge the tax-payers for it.

Two fewer cylinders means that the Cummins has 8 fewer valves to allow air in and out Posted by: mark49

@Mark49

Two fewer cylinders also means less reciprocating mass (valve train, pistons, rods), which should be a GOOD thing, all others being equal.

If you're scratching your head about how the Ram does better than the trucks with V8 of about the same size, there are some things to consider:
The peak horsepower is irrelevant in this test, because the 3 domestic trucks are being run FAR below their capacity. All 3 trucks need about the same amount of power to the ground to get the job done.
The I6 engine has a slower power band- that means throughout its operating cycle, it runs slower, which allows for better thermal efficiency turning fuel into work.
Ford could have spec'd their truck with an available 3.31 Axle, which retains the same towing capacity in that particular truck. That might have turned the tables in their favor.

If I were rich, I would get a new Cummins RAM, then swap out the engine for an old 12v Cummins. The old 5.9L 12v doesn't have the high HP/Torque numbers that make middle-school boys squeal, but it pulls just fine, gets about 5mpg more than 6.7 Cummins, and no DEF, easy to tune, etc.

As to I6 vs V8....V8 is better for speed, I6 is better for towing, imho. The I6 is inherently better balanced, and the Cummins has some pretty solid hardware around the crank.

Ram is going to have a very big surprise when the next generation comes out

17% less horse power 9% better on fuel

Get ready for the big surprise.

Less sales.

We can now take any GM vehicle(diesel) out of the FE equation since they cheated on the emissions, I'm sure the FE numbers are cheats as well....

Less heat loss, from only having six cylinders.
Anyway, it is time for this engine to be retired: too long, too heavy.

We can now take any GM vehicle(diesel) out of the FE equation since they cheated on the emissions, I'm sure the FE numbers are cheats as well....
Posted by: Nitro | May 31, 2017 10:05:13 AM

Nitro you are a clown.

Just because some low life blood-sucking lawyers are suing GM, doesn't mean they cheated on emissions. The EPA hasn't charged them with anything. Anybody can file a lawsuit against someone, that doesn't mean the defendant is guilty. Ford will be next.

@Rusty, so sorry you guys have to continue to defend GM, look at the Chevy/GMC forums, countless complaints, the brand is taking a hit, which you will soon see, as people are not buying into the GM Sh*it they are trying to sell.

maybe GM will go out of business don't need that company around

people are not buying into the GM Sh*it they are trying to sell.

@Nitro

Millions of people bought GM trucks during the last ten years. They cannot all be that stupid, right. Maybe you should reconsider.

inlines are more thermally efficient than V engines. despite having same displacement than ford, ram's cylinder walls have less surface area for heat transfer

Give me the SuperDuty with the cummins engine. and an Allison tranny.

"gets about 5mpg more than 6.7 Cummins, and no DEF, easy to tune, etc."

Good luck keeping your transplanted truck out of an impound yard, let alone passing emissions.

smaller cylinders also fill with fuel/air mixture more efficiently.

Car batteries are the heart and soul of any car. Batteries, if they go out, may then hassle the car owners to no end. It is important to realise that taking good care of the batteries will ultimately enable good care of the car itself. Thus, you can follow our guide on the best car battery. To know more about this app please click here http://bestcarbatteriez.com/

fuel economy



Post a Comment

Please remember a few rules before posting comments:

  • Try to be civil to your fellow blog readers.
  • Stay on topic. We want to hear your opinions and thoughts, but please only comment about the specified topic in the blog post.
  • Your email will not be shown.

If you have a TypeKey or TypePad account, please Sign In

Home | Buy or Sell a Truck | News | Special Reports

Powered by Cars.com. By using this site, you agree to our terms of service | © 2017 Cars.com | Privacy Statement | Contact Us