2019 Ram 1500: Towing an Airstream Travel Trailer | Edmunds

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  • Published on:  8/16/2018
  • Our long-term 2019 Ram 1500 crew cab has the equipment necessary to do some serious towing, so Director of Vehicle Testing Dan Edmunds connected an Airstream Flying Cloud travel trailer and journeyed up into the mountains with his family to beat the heat.

    Q: How much can a 2019 Ram 1500 tow?
    A: Ram advertises a maximum of 12,750 pounds, but that's for a specific version of the quad-cab two-wheel-drive truck that appeals mainly to those who buy work trucks. The crew-cab trucks that are popular with most customers can tow around 11,000 to 11,500 pounds if they have the right equipment.

    Q: What options do you need to get your 2019 Ram 1500 crew cab set up for this kind of towing?
    A: You'll need the 5.7-liter Hemi V8, of course. The optional electric trailer brake controller is a must if your trailer has electric brakes, which most do except for boats; they usually have hydraulic surge brakes. But the key option is the 3.92 axle ratio, which only costs $95. With it, our particular Ram crew cab 4x4 can tow 11,240 pounds. Without this option, however, the standard 3.21 axle gearing would only be good for 8,140 pounds. That's right, 3,100 pounds extra towing capacity only costs $95.

    Q: Why don't all 2019 Ram 1500 trucks come with the axle gearing that enables maximum towing?
    A: It comes down to fuel economy when you're not towing, which for most of us is most of the time. The 3.21 gears will deliver something close to the rated fuel economy, but the 3.92 gears will make it worse. So you really have to ask yourself if you need the extra capacity. The option cost of $95 isn't much, but you will be paying more for fuel whenever you're not towing. How much? That's hard to know, but it is probably roughly proportional to the gearing difference. Manufacturers are not obligated to provide fuel economy ratings for optional axle ratios.

    Q: Tell us something about that Airstream trailer.
    A: It's an Airstream Flying Cloud, specifically a 25FB. The "FB" stands for front bedroom. The number 25 stands for 25 feet, but the spec sheet says it is 25 feet 11 inches long. It weighs about 5,503 pounds without water in the tanks or personal effects in the closets and cabinets, and the tongue weight is 837 pounds, which is 15 percent of the trailer's weight — a typical percentage for travel trailers.

    To find out more about the Airstream trailer, go to: https://www.airstream.com/travel-trai...

    Read more about the Ram 1500 here:
    https://www.edmunds.com/ram/1500/2019...

    Edmunds – we help you find your perfect car with unbiased and useful reviews, advice, pricing and tools. Visit us at https://www.edmunds.com/.
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