When this truck runs, it really does a super job of towing a GN horse trailer, loaded down. It's awesome in steep terrain and on dirt roads, in ice, snow and on slick roads. However, at 42,000 miles, the clutch went out and was a pricey repair. Now the transmission made a popping sound and wouldn't engage. I'll have it towed to the dealer tomorrow. These breakdowns are serious and frustrating. And, Dodge Motors has no interest in covering these breakdowns so it's become a costly truck to own.
The truck was great for the first 6 years. I had one minor air conditioning repair at around the 2nd year. Then everything started falling apart. The AC began spewing out stinky liquid so the heater core had to be replaced, then the car wouldn't shift out of 2nd without manipulating the gas pedal so the solenoids in the transmission had to be replaced. I pull a 8000lb horse trailer a dozen times a year and when the truck is behaving, she pulls great. I don't think she liked being a commute vehicle.. sitting in bay area traffic I'm sure contributed to the wear and tear. The next truck I get I'm buying will definitely be a 4x4!! I got her stuck more than once.
I bought this truck new in 2001. It is a daily driver and I've put over 205,000 miles on it so far. I have never had any major drivetrain issues except the replacement of the front hub bearing at 200,000 miles, tranny governor at 120,000 miles, and A/C stuff (evaporator and compressor replacement). I have driven the new Ram 2500 with the Hemi and I still love my truck better. If I could have any vehicle in the world it would be a brand new 2001 Ram 2500. If you maintain it properly it will give you a million miles; I'm counting on it....
The V-10 (488 CID) will out pull my 2000 Cummins. Its probably the best engine made. Only drawback is poor fuel economy. I have never had any problems with this vehicle in the 5 years I have owned it. The 5 speed manual is tops. Have only used the 4 wheel drive once, and it worked perfectly. Leather heated seats are a plus. I perform maintenance according to the owners manual.
My truck has been a great service to me. Fuel injector pump went out at 30000 miles and again at 200000 miles. Clutch went out at 130000 miles and again at 300000 miles. At 430000 miles we just had the front end all redone. Our only problem was with the brakes and tires wearing quickly. The front end takes a big hit from that heavy engine.