Update 1: 2010 Dodge Ram 1500 Towing Rating Increases

2010 Dodge Ram 1500 Towing Rating Increases

Update #1 July-28-2009 19:27 PDT:
The 2010 Dodge Ram 1500 adds a new 3.21 rear axle option for all three cab configurations equipped with a 5.7-liter Hemi V-8 and two-wheel drive only. The taller (numerically lower) final drive ratio is similar to the rear axle size that GM and Ford offer in their XFE (3.08) and former SFE (3.15) fuel efficiency pickups.

Adding a new rear axle is a relatively easy way to help improve fuel economy however Dodge (for now) has restated last year's 14/20 mpg city/highway EPA gas mileage ratings for two-wheel drive 5.7-liter half-ton Rams. Could we see a slight fuel economy bump later in the year? Stay tuned.

A regular cab Ram 1500 with a 3.21 rear axle is rated to tow up to 6,100 pounds with 17-inch wheels or up to 5,900 pounds with 20-inch wheels. The Crew Cab can pull up to 5,700 pounds and a Quad Cab can tow up to 5,800 pounds. A 17-inch wheel is the only wheel option for the Quad Cab and Crew Cab configurations.

All Ram 1500 trucks with 3.21 axles have an 11,000 pound GCWR.


Following last year’s top-to-bottom redesign of the Dodge Ram 1500 pickup truck, the upgrades continue in 2010, including a significant bump in maximum trailer towing and a marginal increase in payload.

To achieve the higher numbers, Dodge has increased the half-ton Ram’s maximum gross combined weight rating by 1,500 pounds, to 15,500 pounds. GCWR is the maximum allowable weight, including cargo and passengers, that a pickup pulling a trailer can handle without risking damage.

The increased GCWR gives the Ram a new 10,450-pound maximum towing capacity for the regular cab, long-bed, two-wheel-drive model with a 5.7-liter Hemi V-8. It also requires a 3.92 rear axle and 17-inch wheels.

Last year’s Ram with an identical configuration was only rated to tow up to 9,100 pounds, a figure that drew some criticism from serious light-duty towers and smack talk from other manufactures because the new Ram had the lowest rating in the segment.

Chrysler’s response was that the Ram’s exclusive coil-spring rear suspension gave the Ram much improved ride quality versus the competition (something we wholeheartedly agree with), and that truck buyers who need to tow more than 10,000 pounds should look to the heavy-duty segment to find the right truck to meet their needs. At its introduction last year, Scott Kunselman, then Chrysler’s vice president of body-on-frame products, told PickupTrucks.com that Chrysler’s research during Ram 1500 development showed that 80 percent of light-duty owners towed trailers weighing less than 6,000 pounds. Chrysler didn’t see the need to chase seemingly endless increases in maximum towing figures in the half-ton segment.

Interestingly, Dodge achieved the towing increase without any hardware changes, such as the introduction of heavier-duty springs and shocks, or an upgraded transmission cooler. So, how did the rating change occur?

“When developing the all-new 2009 Dodge Ram, the goal was to match the previous-generation Dodge Ram tow capabilities. These goals were achieved and delivered on the all-new 2009 Dodge Ram 1500,” Dodge truck spokesman Roger Benvenuti told PickupTrucks.com. “For 2010, engineers determined the Dodge Ram was capable of towing much more than previously tested. Subsequently, the tow ratings were reassessed and the 2010 Dodge Ram increased its gross combined weight rating by 1,500 pounds without any component or calibration changes to the vehicle.”

Benvenuti also said Dodge truck engineers followed new testing protocols established by the Society of Automotive Engineers and a group of truck manufacturers to standardize tow testing, which we covered in late 2007.

“While all manufacturers use a slightly different tow-rating criteria when evaluating their vehicles, several common factors must be maintained by all when determining tow ratings,” Benvenuti said. “These include design requirements such as engine, transmission and axle cooling, while still ensuring a durable vehicle when towing. Our engineers performed both simulation and real-world tests to ensure that all of our internal targets and all the guidelines set by the new proposed SAE tow standard were achieved. The 2010 Dodge Ram 1500’s towing capability was re-rated without sacrificing performance, quality or reliability, and now exceeds both Ford and Chevy on comparably equipped vehicles.”

Dodge isn’t the first manufacturer to magically increase the tow rating of its half-ton pickup without changing hardware. Ford pulled a similar move when it upped the 2008 Ford F-150's max tow rating to 11,000 pounds from 9,900 pounds the year before, after the 2007 Toyota Tundra arrived with a 10,800-pound tow rating. The Ram’s new 10,450-pound rating is likely to wind up as a bragging point in Dodge’s 2010 marketing efforts.

In addition to the towing increase, the Ram’s maximum payload has increased by 50 pounds, to 1,900 pounds, for a regular cab two-wheel-drive truck when equipped with the standard 3.7-liter V-6.

Other welcome changes for 2010 include optional manual or power-folding trailer-towing mirrors – so you can tow that bigger trailer – an optional integrated trailer-brake controller, and an 18-mm (.7-inch) deepening of the front air dam to improve aerodynamics. An added fuel shutoff feature during deceleration should marginally improve fuel efficiency.

Smaller changes include a fuel-saver indicator light for the 3.7-liter V-6 model, iPod integration -- so the music player can be controlled through the stereo controls or steering-wheel buttons -- new passive head restraints, and new 22-inch wheels for the Ram R/T.


Hi Paul,

No, I have not had any experience like yours because I have a different truck than you. As previously stated, I have a 2003 Dodge Ram 1500 SLT Quad cab w/8ft bed. 5.7L Hemi dynos at 383hp and 404lb/ft. That is much more than Doge claims (345hp, 375lb/ft). Yes, your truck will settle down a bit when towing, but you should be fine. 2007 Hemi Quad cabs are rated for 8,700lbs for 8ft bed, and 8,500lbs for 6.5ft bed. You are at least 1,000lbs below the maximum. The 20inch Goodyear tires are street performance tires, not off road tires or tires good for snow. I had the same problem with the 17inch Goodyear Wrangler tires on my truck. I still have not found a better brand to use, but I keep on searching. What bed do you have on your truck? What different mods?

I just bought my 2010 Ram ST 4X2 Quad Cab Hemi and love it. I really don't see going up a hill taking forever with the power of the Hemi. With 390hp on tap in stock configuration, these trucks pull like freight trains and fly like airplanes. Add a cat back in combination with a Cold Air Intake and your hp and tq will be greatly improved. Expect Hp levels around 425-430.

Nice Bill! I am glad you love your truck. Though Dodge doesn't have the most powerful engine in the truck segment (GM's 6.2L 403hp V8 is top), it does have the highest top speed and best acceleration. I do not own a truck newer than 2003, but I have driven both the 2010 Dodge Ram 1500 Hemi and the GMC Sierra Denali 6.2. The GM is powerful, and has great sound, but it lags more than the Dodge when you push the pedal to the floor. The Hemi, IMO sounds better and looks better, and when you look at track ratings, there is no comparison. The Dodge is more aerodynamic than any other 1/2 ton truck, and the 390hp helps it get to 60 faster than any other truck (5.52 seconds for Qcabs and Ccabs, 5.35 seconds for Reg cabs, and 5.17 seconds for the R/T). I love my 2003 Ram Hemi, and to my memory, haven't lost a race yet. If you can, get some 0-60 times and some dyno #'s for your truck.


man you should know that toyota uses OverHeadCams
and those engine can rev higher which means engine will respond faster.

chevy was using their biggest gasser and not the 5.3
and ford was using 5.4

now DODGE RAM uses a hemi pushrod....which in my opinion it is a master piece. good fuel economy plenty of power and all of that backed by decades of hemi history.


I have a 2010 dodge 1500 with a crew cab.
Can any one help on installing this hitch, how it fastens to the frame.


What engine do you have on your truck? Is it a 4x4 or a 2wd? What axle ratio do you have? And lastly, what kind of hitch are you trying to install? I would guess it is the class IV receiver because you mentioned fastening it into the frame. How much do you plan to tow with it?

I just bought a 2010 Dodge Sport 1500 quad cab 4X4 after considering buying a Ford. (did test drive the Ford). Not being a Ford man I checked out the engines and was disappointed with the lack of HP and could tell on the test drive that it was not close to a hemi nor did it ride as comfortable. I then did all the reading I could and bought the dodge which has a tow rating of 9900 pounds according the the Dodge tow capacity sheet. It has the LT275/70R17C tires and 3.92 rear axle with limited slip. I will probably never tow anything over 6000 pounds but like having the extra capability to keep everything cool hopefully. I love the ride and the only fault is that I am going to be getting poor gas mileage as it is only rated at 13 and 18 and that means for me probably about 10 and 15 since I have a heavy foot. Of course I knew that I was going to get this type of gas mileage so I decided I would rather have more power for more use out of my truck than great gas mileage (if any truck actually has great gas mileage)

@ Hemi man:

I would have done the same thing. The only way you can get Ford's 11,300lbs of towing is to buy the 2wd reg cab long bed 5.4L V8, which is the work truck, and many people need 4x4 or a larger cab. If you don't get this configuration, you might as well go with Dodge, as it beats the F150 in every other category (except work truck payload and mpg). If you want a fast, powerful, hardworking truck, that can seat up to 6 w/ 4x4, get the dodge Quad or Crew 4x4 Hemi, and you won't be disappointed. If you want a truck that can tow 11,300lbs, 3030lbs of payload, with 2wd and seating for 2-3, get the F150 work truck, and you may be disappointed.

Hemi man, I hope you love your truck, as I do mine. 2003 Ram Hemi 4x4 Qcab 8ft bed= great hauler, extremely fast truck, and great family vehicle (minus the gas mileage). Please post some pics, and/or times for your truck asap.

Can the OEM integrated electronic trailer brake control be added on 2010 Big Horn Ram 1500 SLT models, if it's wired for trailer tow from factory

I have a 2010 Ram 1500. What is the towing capacity of the 1/2 ton 5.7 Hemi, quad cab, 355 gears?

@ Hemi Power:
Your statements are untrue. You can get the 11,300lb tow capacity on any cab/bed/drive F-150. As long as the truck has the Max Tow package, it is rated for 11,300lbs. Crewcab, extended cab, regular cab, any bed size, doesn't matter. My 09 FX4 Crewcab with the 6.5 bed is rated for 11,300lbs with the Max Tow package. The FX4 without the Max Tow is rated for 9,600lbs. I am averaging a little over 17.4mpg combined in over 20,000 miles, last time I checked the Dodge heavy duty tow package with the 3.92 axle doesn't even get that empty on the highway. I understand you feel inadequate about buying an inferior truck, but don't go spewing BS trying to convince other people that your mistake was still right.

Not true Mark.

You can only get 11,300lbs towing on the work truck. If the paperwork said otherwise, it is wrong. It is impossible because the larger cab, 4x4, etc all add extra weight, forcing the engine, trans, an suspension to do more work. Max tow package doesn't guarantee 11,300lbs. It just means you get the heavier duty equipment, like engine cooling, hitch, etc.

BTW, I just now double checked the ford website, and it confirmed my info, not yours.

Even if I am wrong (being the ford website is wrong), I would still go with the ram over the ford any day. Personal preference and also it suits my needs best. I would take 390hp and 20mpg over 310hp and 21mpg any day. Much more confidence in towing and racing (and everyday driving).

So I am glad you like your ford, It would be my 2nd or third choice after the ram. I would definetly buy it over the Titan or Tundra (or any other foreign vehicle). Go Dodge, Ford and GM (not Japan).

Can someone explain to me why a full size truck needs to hit 60 in under 6 sec. or even 8 sec. for that matter? Now i know theres people who think this is cool or whatever but to me its idiotic. And EVERY manufacturer is guilty of this except ford but with the 6.2 they'll be up there soon enough. Who are they trying to appeal with those kind of track numbers? I mean it's a work truck. How many middle aged men who need a work truck are going to buy one because of it's acceleration? And if it's 10000 lbs their really needing to pull, then the smart ones will opt out for a diesel because it will get better gas mileage and they know that.


Good question. I think it is almost impossible that a fullsize truck does not hit 60 in under 8 seconds.
#1- The truck needs a powerful engine to pull heavy loads (this is what trucks are made for), and a powerful engine = fast truck. Ford has a good engine, but the 5.4L is old, and while it does have the highest tow/payload ratings in the 1/2 ton segment, the engine is underpowered and doesn't deliver the reassuring power Dodge, GM and toyota have while towing.
#2- The truck has to be quick for freeway acceleration in passing and merging, even while towing a trailer. So while my 2003 Ram Hemi hits 60 in 9 seconds (just like my 2010 Grand Caravan) connected to a 5000lb trailer, it takes a lot less time to achieve 60 without a load (5.3 seconds).
#3- just because I have the ability to hit 60 in less than 6 seconds doesn't mean I do. I use the truck's nearly 400hp only when necessary, or if I just want the thrill of it every once in a while. Being able to go fast doesn't mean you have to, and with 10mpg city and 15hwy during average driving, you don't do it very much.
#4- Is it a crime to have a fast truck? You are acting as if the only good truck is the ford because it is slower than others. As they taught us in drivers education, it is twice as dangerous to go 5mph under the speed limit than over. Some people race their trucks, others tow, and still others just like having a truck. What they do with it is up to them, and for most, a faster truck it both safer and more enjoyable.

Can I put the OEM integrated electronic trailer brake control on my 2009 Dodge Ram 1500? If so how.

First I liked to say I love my new 2010 ram it's my first truck . With all the advancements in technology we all win as consumers all the big three have there pro's and con's .We love the plush ride and power to spare!!!!! We recently went on a road trip with a torrential downpour and limited visibility and boy did we ever feel safe!!!

@Dan, i own a 2010 1500 quad cab, and i pull a 7500 pound camper with it, for 5 miles straight, there is a 8% grade, and my truck pulls it like nothings on it

My 2007 Ram 1500 hemi got written of by a hit and run. I am looking at a 2010 crew cab but i have heard horror stories regarding the coil rear suspension. I tow a 26 foot trailer for about 4 week a year, weighting around 5000 lbs fully loaded.
My old 2007 towed really nice, it sagged a bit but it had leave suspension. any feedback on coils vs. leaves for towing?

Hi.. It nice to read that the Ram 1500 and the F150 can pull such heavy trailers. I have a 8400 lb 5th wheel. How does that configure in the towing specs seeing how the trailer weight is in the bed of the truck vs at the rear bumper frame. I have a F250 and it never passes a gas station it doesn't like! I would like something that gets better than 10 miles per gallon. Please tell me the V-8 1/2 ton can satisfy my needs.

I have a 2010 Dodge ram crew cab with coil springs. A 3.92 axel ratio. 20x9'' wheels. with the 5' 4'' bed I tow a 25 foot 5th wheel. app wieght loaded 7300 lbs. Iam looking to up grade to a 28 foot at app. total wieght of 9100. Can my Dodge haul this ?

I have a 2004 Dodge Ram with 5.7 HEMI, Quad cab 4x4.
with a 3.92 rear end and 5 speed auto. Will it pull a 10,000 pound trailer if I put on air bags and 10 ply tires. Would it help to add a K&N filter. Retired from Ford and driving a Ram. AND LOVING IT....

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