Bought this truck new in 96 and have been extremely happy with it. The only real problems I've had have been related to rust after spending 6 long winters in Upstate NY where they use lots of salt. I have quite a bit of rust under the doors and had a fuel line and brake line rust through--not a good feeling having a 7,000 lb vehicle going down the road and finding I had no brakes. Fortunately, the high compression diesel slows you down quite a bit, and having a manual transmission helped too. I bought the truck for towing, but haven't done much (never got my boat), but when I have towed its as if there is nothing behind me--gobs of torque!
Cummins Diesel is a great engine. Lots of torque, easy to work on, and I've averaged about 19 mpg over 125,000 miles which is pretty darn good for a 3- 1/2 ton 4x4. I plan on keeping this truck for another 10 years!
The doors should be assembled with putty filling the folds in the bottom of the doors. This would help prevent the rust. Also, the OEM Goodyear Wrangler tires were troublesome with side walls developing bulges. This happened on two sets.
This is the best pickup I have ever had. It still looks good. It has never missed a beat in all these years. It gets about 17 mpg solo and about 9-10 mpg towing my light weight trailer. Don't tow anymore, but it is rated to haul a 13,500 trailer. It has heavy duty trailer towing pkg from the factory and "D" rated tires. Presently equipped with a 5th wheel hitch and has a factory installed class three hitch as well.
Extended cab. 5 way adjustable driver's seat, good sound system, two color paint job, blue over silver, power - V10. Steering control is excellent, long wheel base makes a better ride.
4 doors. better radio reception, in-cab extendable mirrors, load levelers, pro-active proximity warning alarm, lighter tailgate, factory fog lights, four wheel disc brakes.
My 1996 Dodge RAM diesel pickup was an excellent choice for a full size, 4X4 vehicle. In 9 years (180,000 miles), I replaced a power steering pump (1 time), front brake pads (3 times), an alternator (1 time), a rear seal on the transfer case (1 time), a headlight housing (1 time), and 12 volt batteries twice (it takes two). It is a rugged truck that has required very few repairs over the years. Besides that, I have never paid for an oil change or lube job since I bought the truck in March of 1996. It came with a "Yellow Card" which includes oil changes plus labor (but not the cost of the oil filter).
My truck stands "tall" so it is a pleasure to drive on the highway. One can see. The visibility is so much better than driving a smaller car. Also, the mileage for such a large vehicle is excellent. My best mileage was 25 mpg, and my worst was 14mpg. The average has been 17 to 18 mpg.
An access port to the sender unit (fuel sender for diesel level in fuel tank) would be very helpful. Without a port thru the floorboard, one must drop the entire fuel tank to change the fuel sender.
This has been a fabulous vehicle. You
may hear me coming a mile away, but
that seems to keep pokies out of my
path! Heavy, strong, and durable.
I intend to keep this one for many
years to come.
My only problem is wearing out the
brakes -- she's so heavy, it takes a
lot of brake to slow her down.
I installed a 12 CD changer -- really
brought that Infinity system to life.