Gary Barbera Has Rows and Rows of 3 Time in a Row Motortrend Truck of the Year Ram 1500


Philadelphia, PA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 12/11/2020 --It's a Three-peat, a Hat-Trick, back to back to back for Ram Trucks. This is an unprecedented accolade for Ram; I am not surprised… The 2021 Ram 1500 TRX is a beauty and a beast", said Charitable Minded Philly Car Guy Gary Barbera

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The 2021 Ram 1500 TRX is the 2021 MotorTrend Truck of the Year

It's a surprise hat trick for the Ram brand and its stellar pickup platform run riot.

Christian Seabaugh Author

Ram 1500 Full Overview
The least interesting thing about our 2021 MotorTrend Truck of the Year is that it's powered by a 702-hp supercharged V-8.

The 2021 Ram 1500 TRX is a truck that resets the standard of what's possible. It is a game-changer, both on- and off-road: a truck equally capable towing and hauling as it is ripping donuts in a field or whipping sports cars in drag races. The TRX is not just the 2021 MotorTrend Truck of the Year—the unprecedented third consecutive time Ram has won—but the new benchmark that all supertrucks must beat.

2021 MotorTrend Truck of the Year: RAM 1500 TRX

At its core, the Ram 1500 TRX is an engineering exercise, and a remarkably impressive one at that. Although the TRX shares its 1500 badge with our 2019 Truck of the Year, truthfully it's easier to point out the few similarities than the differences.

The extensive reimagining that the Ram team did to create the TRX started with its chassis. Although the TRX is nominally related to the 1500, Ram engineers modified 74 percent of the frame in order to meet the ambitious goal of making the TRX the ultimate go-anywhere performance vehicle. The TRX's frame is thicker, shaped differently, and boxed, and it uses more high-strength steel to ensure this Ram can avoid the fate that befell many early Ford F-150 Raptors—bent frames from off-road jumps.

The new frame also allowed the Ram team to modify the axles and suspension mounting points to support the TRX's street-legal trophy-truck mission. The front axle shifted forward to help fit massive 35-inch Goodyear Territory All-Terrain tires (custom specced for the Ram) on 18-inch wheels; the beefy Dana M250 rear axle is mounted to the chassis via new five-link rear suspension mounting points. Thanks to the new axles and tires, track width (and thus off-road stability) on the TRX increased by 6.0 inches versus the standard 1500.

The new frame and axles are all ostensibly designed around the Ram TRX's party piece: its Bilstein Black Hawk e2 adaptive dampers. Although it's easy to dismiss as just another nitrogen-charged remote reservoir shock system—albeit one with massive 2.5-inch pistons—there's more than meets the eye here.

These Bilstein shocks combine rigid aluminum construction for strength and heat dissipation with electronic valve damping that allows the Ram team to independently control compression and rebound damping. What that means in practical terms is that it gives Ram engineers the freedom to dial in different shock settings for daily driving, sporty driving, towing, dune running, rock crawling, and even for the occasional airborne flight. It's some seriously impressive tech.

How Much Power Does The Ram TRX Have?

Powering the 1500 TRX is FCA's infamous Hellcat engine—which, to be pedantic, is technically only called a Hellcat in Dodge products. Regardless, Ram's iteration of the Hellcat gets some changes not seen in the Dodge Challenger and Charger, or even the Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk. This 6.2-liter supercharged V-8 is actually the least powerful Hellcat variant yet, producing "just" 702 hp and 650 lb-ft of torque.

Is The Ram TRX Better Than The Ford Raptor?

But it's so much more than simple horsepower. The other major change to the Hellcat is at the bottom of the TRX's cast-iron block. A new deep-sump oil pan allows the engine to stay lubricated at extreme off-road angles. Farther back, a new exhaust manifold and X-pipe (exiting via 5-inch exhaust tips tucked up in the rear bumper) round out the engine changes. A new high-torque-capacity eight-speed automatic and full-time four-wheel-drive system with a 2.64:1 crawl ratio and electronically locking rear differential complete the TRX's engineering package.

How Much Can The Ram TRX Tow And Haul?

As you'd expect from a vehicle largely based on our 2019 Truck of the Year, the Ram 1500 TRX excels at "truck stuff," too. With 99 more horses on tap than the Freightliner Cascadia (the most popular 18-wheeler in the U.S. ), towing is a nonissue for the Ram TRX. The TRX is rated to haul 1,310 pounds in its bed or tow up to 8,100 pounds off its rear hitch (that's 110 pounds more in the bed and 100 pounds more off the bumper than the rival F-150 Raptor); we put it to the test with a 5,200-pound Airstream Flying Cloud.

Value and efficiency were the trickiest of our criteria for the Ram TRX to overcome. On the former front, there's no denying that at $71,690 to start, this Ram is expensive. Our loaded example stickered at $87,370. It's closest direct competitor, the outgoing 2020 F-150 Raptor SuperCrew, starts at $58,135, and comparably equipped, it's priced around $78,225. That nearly $9,000 price gap between the two trucks nets the TRX buyer a cabin that rivals the Audi RS and Mercedes-AMGs of the world in luxury, a truck that's better to drive on-road (not to mention likely more capable off of it), and 252 more horsepower and 140 more lb ft of torque. So the Ram 1500 TRX is expensive, yes, but also quite a lot of pickup for the money.

As for efficiency, well, there's no getting around this: The TRX's fuel economy is appallingly bad. Even allowing for the fact that supertrucks (like supercars) aren't necessarily held to the same moral efficiency standards that a "regular" pickup or car is, the TRX's 10/14/12 mpg city/highway/combined EPA rating is just plain awful.

In a time when its rival automakers and startups are coming up with novel new ideas to combat climate change—for instance, GMC's upcoming Hummer EV electric pickup—Ram's use of a 6.2-liter supercharged V-8 shows an outdated way of thinking. Ram no doubt knows this; the rest of the 1500 lineup features mild hybrid engines, and it has already announced that it's working on a full-electric pickup truck. But for now, the Ram 1500 TRX's inefficiency is a black mark on an otherwise stellar product.

That the TRX is being awarded Truck of the Year in spite of its inefficiency is a testament to how exceptionally well it does against our other five criteria, especially when compared to our other four Truck of the Year finalists this year.

Like the Ram HD in 2020 and the Ram 1500 in 2019, the 2021 Ram 1500 TRX raises the bar for the segment. Through clever engineering solutions and smart design, Ram has reset the standard as to what's possible in a pickup. This truck is as comfortable on the dragstrip as it is a good winding road—a vehicle equally at home towing horses or hauling lumber as it is scrabbling up slick rock in Moab or over dunes down in Baja. The Ram 1500 TRX is the world's first true go-anywhere, do-anything supertruck, and it's our 2021 Truck of the Year.

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About Barbera Cares Programs© and the Barbera Bear™
Gary Barbera's on the Boulevard is enhanced by our 3 Decades of Barbera Cares Programs of community service and philanthropy and our famous Barbera Bear. We are passionate about our Hometown Heroes who we feature on our Environmentally Friendly Green UP & Clean UP Solar Powered Recycling Kiosks- SRK's. Our PSA's focus on Distracted Driving Don't Text and Drive Displays and Keeping the Boulevard Safe Collaborations, Philabundance, AACR- American Association for Cancer Research, Roxborough and NE Family YMCA's. 1000's of Book Bags, Turkeys, Food Boxes, Laptops and Winter Coats have been hand delivered to underserved neighborhoods like Strawberry Mansion. Proud Inaugural partner of Governor Edward G. Rendell's Adopt-A-Highway state-wide clean up initiative from the ground up and we champion Philly's finest and our Veteran's for their service and sacrifice. The Barbera Bear is EVERYWHERE! Representing our Barbera Brands leading parades, bringing smiles for miles on the faces of children and entertaining while contributing to our communities.

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