Used 2017 Ram 1500 Tradesman HFE Diesel Review
Edmunds Summary Review of the 2017 Ram 1500 Tradesman HFE Diesel
Pros & Cons
- Smooth-riding suspension provides plenty of comfort
- Excellent trio of engine choices
- Smooth and efficient eight-speed automatic transmission
- Cabin is quiet and attractive
- Maximum tow rating falls just shy of class leaders
- Diesel engine's up-front cost is significant
- Missing some of the latest driver safety aid technologies
Full Edmunds Review: 2017 Ram 1500 Diesel
Perhaps one of the most impressive elements of owning a Ram 1500 is the excellent ride quality. On the highway, it's smooth, quiet and relatively unfazed by even significant bumps. The adjustable air suspension makes the ride even better. It's a unique feature for this class that allows the truck to drop 2 inches to ease liftover and step-in heights when parked. Two off-road settings for the air suspension also allow increases of 1.2 inch and 2 inches above the standard height for extra clearance.
For power, the 5.7-liter V8 is likely the choice if you're towing consistently. It has the highest-rated towing capacity, but the diesel V6 is impressive too, and it offers much better fuel economy to boot. Although the diesel's acceleration numbers are on the slow side, we've found that it's just as capable as the other engines for normal commuting. That said, if you're not planning to do any towing, sticking with the base gasoline V6 engine will save you a bundle and give you a bit more speed with the pedal pinned to the floor.
Gear changes from the eight-speed automatic are smooth and practically imperceptible, so the transmission never feels busy, as you might expect with so many gears. It's also a benefit when towing, as there are more ratios available to achieve an ideal engine rpm, and it could even reduce your need to get a different axle ratio.
Regardless of trim level, the Ram 1500's interior is one of our favorites in the segment. Lower trim levels feel well built with quality materials, and upper trim levels are predictably very well executed, with available wood trim and premium leather upholstery that class things up quite a bit. Seat comfort is excellent, especially for long road trips, with soft padding and adequate support in the right places. If you go with the crew cab, there's plenty of legroom in the rear and matching seat comfort.
For infotainment controls, the Ram features two available Uconnect systems. The 5-inch center screen is decent, but our favorite is the upgrade 8.4-inch screen with its large virtual buttons, quick response times and logical menu layouts. As an added bonus, there are several physical buttons and knobs that duplicate those tasks for the more traditional owner. Seasoned truck owners might be thrown off at first by the rotary shift knob on the dashboard, but it quickly becomes second nature, and it frees up useful storage space compared to trucks with console-mounted shifters.
Leaving nothing out, the Ram 1500 also includes plenty of available modern convenience features such as keyless entry and ignition, remote start, power-adjustable pedals, Bluetooth, voice controls, smartphone integration and even Wi-Fi hot spot capability. If you have trouble finding a good driving position, be sure to check out the optional power-adjustable pedals because the Ram 1500 is exclusively equipped with a tilt-only steering wheel.
For storing items inside the cabin, the Ram provides plenty of standard and optional storage spaces. The extended cab has a clever fold-out flat floor space when you flip up the 60/40-split rear seats, while the crew cab features watertight storage compartments under the rear floor (i.e., coolers!) as well as shallow bins under the flip-up backseat. A unique Ram feature is the optional RamBox system, which places a pair of lockable compartments over the rear fenders inside the truck bed. With the right equipment levels, these compartments can even be locked and unlocked via remote.
Edmunds Insurance Estimator
The Edmunds TCO® estimated monthly insurance payment for a 2017 Ram 1500 in Virginia is:$68.42 per month*