2015 Ram 1500 Rebel: First Drive Video

Ram Rebel 018 II

We had the chance to spend a good amount of time with the new 2015 Ram 1500 Rebel in the volcanic parts of northwestern Arizona. We did a little four-wheeling, climbed a few cinder cones and pushed the new offering hard. Here's what we liked and thought of the new package.

Cars.com photo by Mark Williams

Video produced by Matt Avery



I don't get what is so special about this ugly thing besides it's appearance. Just about everything on it can be had on a regular Ram. Slap a set of Bilstiens on a 4x4 Ram Bighorn with air bags and limited slip and you basically have the same thing here which is nothing special, and the regulations Ram would look a lot better than this ugly thing. If they would have put lockers on it and a special off road mode then you would have something special.

I like quad cabs myself. Could come close to duplicating the mechanicals of this truck on mine by installing the good shocks and tires and if the skid plates are different than mine I could buy the better one from Ram or aftermarket. Would have to use a mild lift kit to replace the air setup on the Rebel. By the way, if you have a 2011 Ram or newer, there are no lockers or limited slips available for your truck. Called Yukon Gear and Eaton and they make nothing for the newer Ram trucks with the metric axle. Mine is a 235 mm rear axle which is the same as the 9.25 axle in older trucks. If anyone knows a company that makes lockers or Torsen for the front of my Ram I would like to hear from you. I'm rollin snakeyes so far.

Everything I read about this truck makes me want it even more. This is exactly what I want. Plus I love the styling

Correction: This is not the first time Ram has done an offroad package. In the early 2000s there was an "Off Road" model that had a D44 front axle with trussing, heavier duty suspension, larger and more aggressive 275/70-17 tires, traction aides, etc. They were pretty popular around my area. You could get them in a regular cab short box configuration and they would literally go anywhere the Jeep Wrangler would go offroad. They actually had more capability than this new Rebel has, and on tight technical trails they will perform better than the current Raptor also.

Go on the 'build and price' on the ram website and you damn sure can get a limited slip rear dif for all trims except the SLT.

Hey TollRide go buy a Ridgeline it`s your style.

A parts bin reshuffle with a few interior tidbits thrown in for a increase in sales price.

No wonder Marchionne is trying to find a wealthy company to merge with FCA.

" This is not the first time Ram has done an offroad package."

That's funny. Dodge started the off road market in 1946 with the first available 4x4 truck. It's called Power Wagon. Their was a time not long ago where Chevy and Ford both used Chrysler transfer cases and manual transmissions to make their trucks 4x4. (NP)


Ford does the same. Most any company will value add.

As I have pointed out, you guys pay a premium for an off road capable vehicle. Even then the manufacturer don't make them ideal in some cases.

Look at that FX4. An off roader if you want to use it as a bulldozer. The front sits way to low, and to add to the poor approach angle the FX4 has poor ramp over.

And Ram can profit more than the other since it has started out at a lower price.

It's a positive for FCA, not like the negative intones you placed in your comment.

All FCA need to concentrate on is quality improvement and remove the Chief Grille Design Engineer;)

Too bad, ford doesn't have any of those parts in the bin. Ler me know, when ford find some 8 speed, multilink rear coil spring suspension and air ride in the bin.LOL.

You are incorrect as usual...... Approach and departure angles are better on a 2015 ford


Suspension fully extended, the Rebel has an approach angle of 25.3 degrees, easily beating the 17.9-degree number of the 2015 Chevrolet Silverado 4x4 but falling a cactus needle shy of the 2015 Ford F-150 4x4’s 25.5 degrees. Still, the Rebel is no rock climber, despite its graphics.

@ fredtheman, Try Auburn Gear.


Big Al from Oz - I've never denied that the current crop of "off-road" packages are glorified sticker kits.
Ram with the Rebel is spinning this as a superior "off-road" package to the competition. It adds nothing of value other than a better Toyo tire.

The fact that Ram ONLY let journalists play with this truck on a crushed volcanic rock surface tells me that any serious off-roading or any driving that would cycle the suspension would overwhelm the air ride.
One of the off-road magazines was able to overheat the air ride on the first Ram's to hit the market. The fact that Ram is avoiding a scenario such as that is telling. Similar issues have been documented for FCA SUV's equipped with air ride.

Rebel has much more room in the front of the front wheels than ford fx4, so even of better approach angle listed by magic ford department, Rebel will get places Fx4 won't without breaking front bumper and fenders.
Just imagine big rocks right in front of front tires.

Ford has better approach, departure and break over angle. The ram will smash the front, get high centered and smash it's exhaust closed on the rear bumper long before the ford which is better in measurable offroad characteristics. Argue all you want chica but you are on the wrong side of right in your statement.

" Ram is avoiding a scenario such as that is telling."

Posted by: Lou_BC | May 20, 2015 3:44:43 PM

It's very telling that the Ford did not even show up with a truck to test off road. What is ford avoiding?

HEMI V8 - it was a Ram sponsored event........... Why didn't Ram bring a Ford and Chevy for comparison?

@Lou Bc, Four wheel truck of the year if memory serves me correct. Which Ram won. They admitted to thrashing the truck off road and where able to over heat the suspension. Ford did not bother to offer a truck to test. So according to you what is Ford avoiding by not offering a truck to test against the Ram off road?

Numbers mean nothing. Specially ford numbers.
I just look at the picture and see that Fx4 is useless offroad.
Rebel will get places Fx4 can only dream of.

The last sentence of this paragraph is classic..... Nice place ram choose to have a press event on the offroad truck..... Home of Nissan sentra's..... lmao!!!!!
After a short jaunt on paved roads, we hit the kind of terrain owners are likely to encounter most frequently: muddy two-tracks. Again the Rebel persevered, slipping and sliding across the muck, but never out of control. When it began to snow, the fun factor increased exponentially. This is when we were nearly rear-ended by an overzealous driver in one of the Power Wagons. Thankfully, he chose the ditch over the large “RAM” target affixed to our tailgate. Now, we did see a Nissan Sentra artfully plying the same paths, but it’s likely the driver was a local, or maybe just huffing bath salts.

Cool story. Ford didn't make it there. Does it mean it's worse than Sentra?
I thought so.

Nope chica.... Ford chose to not show up at a maintained road event that Sentra can make it on that ram premiers there pickup at under the guise of offroad.. Ram showed up cause it's the only event that nobody really goes too but ram could get the lead spot at the event cause nobody else is there. Ford goes to Baja along with Toyota for there offroad trucks..... Ram goes to gravel roads to debut there offroad truck.... Lmao to even think in the 1500 market ram can even attempt to keep up with trd pro's offroad. Ram can't even match fx4 fords!

Is really stock fx4 going to Baja?
Do you really think that anybody who drives Fx4 could qualify at Baja?
Ford pr department is doing excellent job. Not for me.

Fx4 can go in Baja.... Just not going to do it fast.

Ram just proved a Nissan Sentra can go where not only a rebel can go but also a power wagon. Ram didn't even have the confidence in the rebel..... They had to send some power wagons on the rebel debut..... And a Nissan Sentra!!!!! Lmao!!!!

If fx4 can go to Baja , Sentra can make it too, just not going to do that fast.

Nope Nissan Sentra wouldn't go where a fx4 would in Baja..... That is why they don't show up.... They go to offroad events for ram rebels and power wagons though!!!!

You shouldn't believe what ever ford salesman tells you.
You would avoid to look like 6 years old at PUTC forum.

Here is what 4 wheeler said on it's test.

"The Ram Rebel may not be a factory Baja pre-runner, but it’s an impressively capable truck nonetheless. Ram has built a more aggressive and better branded off-road package for a half-ton pickup than any of its competitors. Doubters are welcome to try to keep up on the trail."

You shouldn't believe what ever ford salesman tells you.
You would avoid to look like 6 years old at PUTC forum.

Posted by: Cicka | May 20, 2015 5:34:00 PM

Likewise you shouldn't believe what ram or tells ya.... A Nissan Sentra playing where ram took there off-roader to test is very telling.

I have a raptor so not concerned with anything that the others put out in the 1/2 ton segment.... Nothing can compete

Scott - It is ironic that the Rambo types say numbers mean nothing. That explains why the 2 sheep fanboys want a Power Wagon......... 1,440 lb capacity and 9,700 lb towing in a 3/4 ton truck.
Most HD's can carry double that and tow at least 12k.

I see you are the Mall Queen then.
Sorry . I thought we discuss technical matter. Please don't forget to make notes in your calendar, when you use that locker switch.
That sentra driver was fx4 driver wife and she went to pull him out of the ditch.

Ford fanboys need not apply. The good old Eco boost can't handle any water or dampness on the intercooler or it stalls and goes into limp mode. Fords 5.0 is no match for the legendary hemi v8.


Ford Quality job none.

May 01, 2015 - Chattanooga, TN - Engine

Like shooting sheep in a barrel. Dumb and Dumber makes a comeback ;)

Legendary hemi?

Porsche copycat hemi. LOL

Came in 4th behind the 5.0 F150 in the PUTC shootout.


@Big AL

"Look at that FX4. An off roader if you want to use it as a bulldozer. The front sits way to low, and to add to the poor approach angle the FX4 has poor ramp over."

Do some research. At 25.5 degrees, the 2015 Ford FX4 actually has a greater approach angle than this Ram Rebels 25.3 degrees at full extension of the air suspension in "off road mode. The FX4 also has a greater breakover angle of 21 degrees while the Ram Rebel in "off road" mode is only 19.6 degrees. Lastly, the departure angle is also greater on the 2015 FX4 at 26 degrees than the 23 degrees of the Ram Rebel at fully extended "off road" mode.

"And Ram can profit more than the other since it has started out at a lower price."

Again, do some research and quit looking at just want you want to see just to fit the outcome you want to portray. They stated that the base price for the Ram Rebel will probably be around $45,000 which is lower than the . However, if you did your research then you would know that the base Ram Rebel is 2wd with a 305 hp and 269 lb -ft of torque base 3.6L and no limited slip differential since that is still an option. An equivalent 2015 F150 Lariat 2wd blacked out sports package(like the Rebel) with a 325 hp and 375 lb-ft of torque 2.7L Ecoboost and a locking differential is a little $45,500. So compare apples to apples and do some research before making statements like this.

Here is an FX4,


Here is a Raptor,


Ford's still got it!

Chica. Use it a lot.... Anytime offroad in mud or sand as a locked diff is far superior to any limit slip diff from any manufacture. But when I don't use the locker such as on road it still is a limited slip. Limited slip up front is far better as well then the open front diff of all other half tons. I have true 4wd chica and it's only a couple inches wider then a rebel as the beautification fender flares on the rebel make it wider then a stock ram and just a 1 inch or 2 narrower then a raptor!!!

But then this isn't the debate. The 1000 lb lighter fx4 has the any ram easily beat. Better approach, break over, and departure angles that don't change based on speed or what position your transfer case is in. Remember the offroad suspension setting is only available on the ram in low range and below 20 mph. The minute you go above that speed your truck lowers and if you are in high range or 2wd you can't even use the offroad mode. So essentially you have Chevy type clearance off-roader if you are in 2wd or 4wd high. You have to go into 4 lot to even get remotely close but still less then the ford on clearances. Lol!

Posted by: HEMI V8 | May 20, 2015 6:17:33 PM

Even starting to sound like a sheep.

You have no idea what you are talking about. Exactly like ford salesman.


The raptor with its mirrors fold out is the exact same distance as every other f150..... The raptor with mirrors folded out is narrower then a ram 1500 with its mirrors folded out. Fold the mirrors in and the raptor is still 1.7 inches wider then a ram is all...... don't see many people folding mirrors in off road and if you are your vehicle is beat as it is bouncing things on the side of the trail. I always get a kick out of people saying you can't off road a raptor cause its to wide.... You don't have a clue about off road if that is the case when it comes to full size pickups

Ram 1500 with mirrors fold out is 103.5"......
Ram 1500 with mirrors fold in is 84.6"

Ford raptor with mirrors fold out is 97"
Ford raptor with mirrors fold in is 86.3"

A regular f150 with mirrors out is 97"
A regular f150 with mirrors folded in is 83.5

Man I'll tell ya, I still can't get over that stupid grill. I guess one of the first mods would be to retrofit a regular stock Ram grill on it. Whoever signed off on that grill design needs to be fired. Trucks don't have to look ugly to be capable. Sheese.....

@ The Different Mike
I wish I drive behind you, so you see that grill in your mirrors all the time.
This will sell very well. Like New Jeep Cherokee.
People are sick of generic boring design.

Great truck but for a few details. Not so sure that I would want to deal with air suspension on off-road truck, how about 7-link coils instead with a nice set of shocks. Also not crazy about his grille, needs the cross-hair grille to look right. The RAM lettering on the back is better than the chrome that I saw on another model, but is still gaudy, have to say that I prefer the emblem on the rear to this. I do like the fact that they are allowing a decent bit of options on the power-train.

Let me know when ford Raptor can fold the fenders.

HEMI V8 is correct!
They are still having problems with the eco-boost when its raining or humid and when the turbo sucks water just one time its never the same after that. It only takes ONE time to cause additional engine damage.
The Ford mechanic fix is to simply flash the throttle response to restrict it at full throttle.
Go ahead and just try to floor it and see what happens next time.

That's why my F-150 has the 5.0 V8 (sure Hemi 5.7 can blow me off the road but I don't own it to race)

I see Lou_BC is doing his normal Ram bashing along with his little clique.

PUTC.com is by far the worst place to review pick ups. You are better off avoiding this sewer pit.

I would prefer the truck to have an option for excluding the air suspension. I would imagine that the ride is rough when 4X4 is engaged and the air bags are inflated for lift (assuming that's what happens). It's also one more item to deal with when the the miles are piled on and you hit the 10 year mark.

Sad Sack - the Ram Rebel is basically the equivalent of a FX4 or Z71.
I don't care for the air ride feature. Being able to lift the truck would be handy in 4x2 or 4hi.
Air ride does not deliver for anyone other than a casual pickup driver who doesn't carry anything in their truck.

Other than some aesthetic trim pieces and better Toyo tires what does this offer over the competition or even a Ram 1500 Outdoorsman?

Four wheeler tested the Eco Boost Fx4 2012,

"Although, during some spirited driving for photos we did heat the truck up enough that it apparently went into a limp mode. Surprisingly, there was no light to indicate this on the dash, but power was noticeably down."

Rebel offers a unique looking truck. Different than a RAM. Rebel offers two multiple award winning powertrains. V6 & V8
Rebel offers a better cargo system than the FX4. Rebel offers better tires with a smaller 17 inch Rebel wheel. Rebel offers better interior. Better warranty. Better ground clearance. Just to name a few. FX4 has a running board. lol

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