- A brand-new take on a plug-in hybrid from Ram.
- The Ramcharger combines a battery, a gas engine, and two electric motors for a very unique powertrain.
- More than 600 horsepower, a 690-mile claimed combined range, and 14,000 pounds of towing make this one intriguing pickup.
2025 Ram 1500 Ramcharger First Look: Wait, Ram Did What With Its Truck?
It's a pickup not quite like any we've seen before
According to Ram CEO Tim Kuniskis, electric trucks only make up about 8% of all pickup sales right now. Even though he expects EV representation to hockeystick upward in the future, he knows they won't be the answer to every new truck buyer's wants and needs. So instead of waiting for demand to catch up with its plans, the automaker has come up with a solution for the here and now. It's called the 2025 Ram 1500 Ramcharger, and it combines a gas engine that acts as a generator, a big battery pack, and two electric motors to make an electrified pickup like we've never seen before.
So what the heck is a Ramcharger?
While the Ramcharger name used to belong to a boxy SUV and was sold by Dodge, this iteration belongs to Ram (and it takes the charger portion of its name quite literally, but we'll come to that). From the outside, the Ramcharger looks a lot like the refreshed 2025 Ram 1500 with extra lighting details on the front and rear. Only the most eagle-eyed would spot the eight-lug wheel hubs and the cutout in the front fender for the charging port. Even on the inside, there are few hints that this is more than just another Ram — in fact, it looks pretty much identical to a top-trim 1500 Limited powered by the brand's new twin-turbo inline six-cylinder engine. It's what's under the skin that makes the biggest difference.
For starters, the Ramcharger is built on the new STLA Frame platform. That means it has the same bones as the Ram 1500 Rev (the automaker's upcoming fully electric pickup) that features a ladder frame 8 inches wider in the middle compared to the gas-powered Ram's. This is because the Ram 1500 Rev needs room to accommodate a massive battery pack — which ranges between 168 and 229 kWh. The Ramcharger's 92-kWh unit has less capacity but is still a sizable pack, and it feeds two electric motors, one at the front of the truck and one at the rear. Together they make 663 horsepower and 615 lb-ft of torque.
But the Ramcharger's party trick — the thing that sets it apart from the Rev — is the 3.6-liter gasoline V6 that sits under the hood. The V6 isn't connected to the wheels in any way and as such this isn't a conventional plug-in hybrid. Instead the V6 acts exclusively as a 130-kW onboard charger for that 92-kWh battery pack. (According to Ram, that 130 kW figure is its continuous output, with peak output reaching 190 kW.) It's a different take on an EV that Ram says will satisfy customers who need to travel long distances and live in places where charging infrastructure is scarce.
On a fully charged battery, the Ramcharger has a range of 145 miles. Once the V6 generator kicks in however, total range balloons to 690 miles. Once the 27-gallon gas tank is depleted and the battery dead (or near dead), you'll need to either plug it into a charger or find a gas station. The Ramcharger can DC fast-charge at up to 145 kW, adding up to 50 miles of range in just 10 minutes when connected to a charger with that electrical rate.
There are other neat tricks under the skin, too. The 1500's double-wishbone front suspension carries over, and the rear end is a fully independent multi-link setup. Adaptive dampers and air springs will come standard on the Ramcharger as well. The air suspension provides aerodynamic benefits (lowering the truck at higher speeds), allows you to compensate for the load of a trailer, or simply gives you the option to raise or lower to truck to make getting in or out easier. The Ramcharger can tow up to 14,000 pounds and has a max payload rating of just over 2,600 pounds.
The Ramcharger's interior looks almost identical to the one you'll find in the 2025 Ram 1500. You get the same large screens that dominate the interior (including the optional passenger display). Ram has said it's used more leather in the interior to make the top-spec Tungsten models feel even more premium.
Another benefit of the 1500 is its spacious interior, which should leave plenty of space for you, your passengers, and all their gear. Expect the Ramcharger to have just one body configuration — a crew cab with a 5.5-foot bed.
As with any modern truck there is a load of tech in the Ramcharger, most of which is shared with the updated Ram 1500. The middle screen measures 14.5 inches diagonally, and there's a fully digital instrument cluster, too. Two new drive modes give the driver the option to choose how the powertrain acts. One preserves the gas-engine generator until the battery is at a low enough state of charge that it becomes needed, and the other turns on the engine to charge the battery while you drive along. Ram has said the Ramcharger has been tuned to maximize range, especially when towing.
An EV, hybrid or something else?
While Ram will insist that this is the “ultimate electric truck,” the truth is it’s not that. It’s not an EV when there’s a gas burner tucked up under the hood. This is more like a trick plug-in hybrid system — think BMW i3 with a range extender or the old Chevy Volt. Even though the Ramcharger’s gas engine can’t physically drive the wheels, it’s a truck with a plug socket and a fuel door. That makes it a plug-in hybrid, regardless of what the marketing materials tell you. Even so, it’s one of the most interesting new cars to come out in a while, and we’re excited to get behind the wheel. You can expect pricing details in the middle of next year, while Ram has targeted an on-sale date sometime near the end of 2024.
Not what we expect from Ram for 2025, but the new Ramcharger is nothing if not immensely intriguing.