Best Pickup Truck of 2016 Preview: 2016 Ram 3500

Ram Limited 3500 II

We will hand out our Best Pickup Truck of 2016 Award during's Best of 2016 event Jan. 12 at the Fillmore Detroit. The awards presentation will cap two press days at the North American International Auto Show, which opens to the public Jan. 16 and runs through Jan. 24. There are six contenders for Best Pickup Truck of 2016, and we are providing a preview of each truck before the big reveal.

Our sixth and final preview focuses on the 2016 Ram 3500 Heavy Duty with the Cummins turbo-diesel.

We've been a huge fan of HD one-ton dualie turbo-diesel pickups for as long as we can remember, but we've never seen numbers like the ones from the new maximum-tow Ram 3500 Heavy Duty Cummins. Newly rated to deliver 900 pounds-feet of torque thanks to some mechanical changes in the turbocharger, injection system and exhaust, the Ram 3500 now has the biggest rear differential and rear axle in the segment.

The maximum payload for the Ram 3500 dualie is 7,390 pounds, and when it is equipped with the high-output Cummins engine tow package it can pull a 32,210-pound gooseneck trailer. This max-torque package is only available with the six-speed automatic Aisin transmission and hulking rear axle. It has the rest of the current-gen one-ton competitors scrambling back to their tech centers.

We had a chance to test the Ram 3500 with the Cummins turbo-diesel a few months ago and came away impressed; check out this video to see it in action.

Check back with us on Jan. 12 to see how the Ram 3500 turbo-diesel stacks up and who the big winner is.

Manufacturer image





*the truck weight & the max payload put it over 16k tho

Plymoth, there is a big difference in GVWR and GCWR. The vehicle weight all loaded up is 14000lbs. That is the GV or gross weight. GC or gross combined is the 40400. That is the absolute highest weight truck and trailer combined. So on a stripped down truck and one driver and one passenger you should be able to tow a trailer that is 31200lbs. Now add extra trim packages, extra people etc that needs to be subtracted from the Gross Combined. Also the Gross Vehicle weight.

*the truck weight & the max payload put it over 16k tho

Posted by: Plymouth PT 3500 | Jan 5, 2016 8:51:46 PM

Where are you seeing this info. It may help. On Ford website in payload, it shows GVWR as 14000. Class 3. Max payload of 5300 lbs. That brings the truck in at 8700 lbs.

Now the max payload truck is 7050lbs of cargo. But that truck is a 4x2 DRW and a GVWR of 13500 lbs.

@cummins the issue isn't the payload, but the truck weight of 9200Lbs,it's how much the F450 weights add 5300LBs payload even the lowest payload still puts it over 14,000GVWR by 500lbs

@LMAO Then it's not the same truck that can tow the 31,200lbs,unless they lowered the payload to 4,800lbs

2015 F450 Crew Cab 4WD

GVWR - 14,000 lbs

Base curb weight - 8,611 lbs

Payload - 5,300 lbs

13,911 lbs

Page 79 - Under "towing" the F450 gives a 40,400Lbs GCWR & a Towing of 31,200LBs. So I guess if it's still got a GVWR of 14,000Lbs then F450 that tows 31,200lbs only has a payload of 4,800lbs?

The point is 40,400Lbs GCWR minus 31,200LBs Towing = a remainder of 9,200Lbs which would be the truck weight.

Plymouth, I posted the curb weight of the F450 above at 8,611 lbs, not 9,200 lbs.

I don't think you understand how it works. The trailer tongue weight automatically takes away from the payload.

Take the Ram 3500 regular cab that is rated to tow 31,210 lbs. It has a GCWR of 39,100 lbs. If you minus the 31,210 from the the 39,100 then that will leave you with 7,890 lbs. The curb weight of that truck per Ram is 7,423 lbs which leaves you with 467 lbs. However, it does not work how you think it does.

Curb weight is 8611. Trailer tow capacity is 31200. 8611+31200=39811. 40400-39811=589Lbs of payload left over. Vehicle occupants, fuel load etc.. That is assuming you don't load you trailer to put to much weight to exceed the axle ratings.
Now if you really want to get into fuzz math look at the from and rear axle weight ratings. Ford f450 rawr is 9100 and the fawr is 5940. So if you add those up if you maxed those with weight you come out the 15040 lbs.

Same with ram.... A quick google I came up with the 2015 chart
On a 1 ton dually single cab 2wd ram had a gvwr of 14,000 just like the ford f450 crew cab dually. But the ram axle weight rating for there 2015 30k tow 3500 it has a rawr of 9750 and a fawr of 5500 so if you combine the axle weight ratings of this ram model you come up with a total weight capacity of 15,250 by going off of axle ratings of the front and rear axle combined

So the moral of the story is both ford and ram derate there payload capacities to get to the magic 14k number to fall into class 3. Payload capacity is a simple formula of gvwr(14k)-curb weight.... Not gcwr rating-tow capacity to eequsl truck weight

@scott & cummins GCWR "is the maximum allowable weight of the towing vehicle and the loaded trailer – including all cargo and passengers" Page 30

So the GCWR is the truck & trailer weight put together meaning with a GCWR of 40,400lbs & a towing of 31,200lbs the truck has no choice to be 9,200lbs,because that's the only way with a towing of 31,200 it can have a GCWR of 40,400lbs. & if the truck weighs 9,200lbs & really does have a 14,000 GVWR then it has only 4,800lbs of payload left.

Plymouth, remember part of that trailer weight is also goose neck weight on the hitch in the bed. So that's where guys that do towing a lot have their trucks weighed to see how much is the combined weight and how much left is on the rear axle for extra load. So they may be able to max out load and trailer weight because some of that trailer weight is tongue weight.


No, that is not how it works and I have told you once already. Reread what you posted. It stated the "maximum allowable weight of the towing vehicle" NOT the weight of the tow vehicle like you are assuming. Where does it say that it is the actual weight like you keep saying because I see "allowable weight" in what you posted.

I am actually glad you posted that link because it proves what we are saying if you keep on reading on that very same page about tongue weight and how it is taken out of the payload or GVWR like we have been saying.

What that means is that an 8,611 lb F450 with a GVWR of 14,000 and a GCWR of 40,400 is towing a 31,200 lbs trailer. The tongue weight of that trailer would be around 15% which comes out to be 4,860 lbs. So you would subtract the trucks weight (8,611 lbs) and the weight the tongue weight (4,860 lbs) from the 14,000 lbs GVWR and you are left with 529 lbs left for passengers and cargo in the truck if you are pulling that much weight. Again, read what you posted because it proves what we are saying is true.

Okay, let's turn this around on the Ram I stated above that has the max tow rating of 31,210. Going by how you are determining the F450s truck weight, lets do the same with the Ram.

GVWR 39,100
Max tlr 31,210
7,890 lbs

Ram says that truck has a curb weight of 7,423 ln here--->

So who is false here, you or Ram?

@Cummins there wouldn't any GCWR left over they must be off as well then. Because if u read the ford link right below where it says "GCWR" it says "Max loaded trailer" is
the highest possible weight of a fully loaded trailer the vehicle can tow, based on a minimum towing vehicle GVW. It assumes a towing vehicle with any mandatory options, no cargo, tongue load of 10-15% (conventional trailer) or king pin weight of 15-25% (5th-wheel trailer), and driver only (150 lbs.). So going by that there can't be any GCWR left if u can only have the driver & no cargo at all, isn't that right?

*wouldn't be

@cummins P.S that's a 2015 chart not 2016 as the GCWR is only 37,900 not 39,100lbs

*I see the error tho


"So going by that there can't be any GCWR left if u can only have the driver & no cargo at all, isn't that right?"

No, that isn't right and I stated why above. Yes it says "max loaded trailer" but it DOES NOT say the weight of the truck. It says "allowable weight" meaning the truck actually weighs less, but you have a little payload left for some passengers and cargo when towing at the "max trailer weight".

I don't know why you are arguing this? We posted the actual F450 truck weight and ratings above and DOT goes by that and not what you are assuming. So basically it is pointless since they can weight and verify that the truck weighs 8,611 and subtract that from its 14,000 GVWR to which will give you a payload of 5,389 lbs. THAT is how payload is derived and NOT by subtracting max tow rating from GCWR.

PS: look at that chart again. It clearly states that the only Ram truck that is rated to tow 31,210 lbs has a GCWR of 39,100 lbs. Regardless of if they changes it in 2016, THAT truck has a GCWR of 39,100 lbs so my example still applies. However, it is still the same in the 2016 chart here---> So either your lieing again z or you looked it up wrong.

I think that RAM compares their 3500 to F350 and GM 3500 twins when they claim best in class towing. They are also out-towing the F450 by 10lb, but that only in 2WD, short bed version, while Ford only offers 4WD, crew cab and long bed in their F450. In that configuration the RAM 3500 tows significantly less then the F450, but another important detail is that the RAM is much cheaper.

Many times I will check this site out when I am sitting on the toilet making a statue of Johnny Welfare.

The comments to this entry are closed.