Fullsize pickups may be load-hauling brutes on the outside, but inside they can delight and pamper with the best of the luxury sedans.
Nowhere is that more evident than with the ’19-model Ram from Fiat Chrysler Automobiles.
Chosen to be among this year’s Wards 10 Best Interiors is the top-of-the-line Ram 1500 Limited Crew Cab, which is the specific model we tested. Truth be told, almost any one of the six distinct offerings in the Ram pickup lineup might have made the cut, from the Tradesman, Big Horn and Laramie to the Rebel and Laramie Longhorn, because each one offers unique color schemes, hyper-focused attention to detail and clever branding touches throughout the cabin.
Stickered at $65,945, our Limited rendition featured a unique indigo/frost color treatment, with pinstriped genuine wood trim (FCA calls it Argento Wood) along the dash, doors, center console and steering wheel; stylistic accent stitching on doors, seats and center console; laser-etched metal switches (with different patterns depending on the model); artsy metal speaker grates for the 900-watt Harman Kardon sound system; and bold RAM badging front and center.
“Materials are befitting an $80,000 luxury car,” says one tester. “Attention to detail is phenomenal.”
The crowning feature is the Ram’s massive center touchscreen. Measuring 12 ins. (30 cm), the command center actually is two 6-in. (15-cm) screens stacked on top of each other. You wouldn’t know it, though, because a single piece of glass covers both and gives the appearance of one large unit.
It’s the type of iPad-like display seen before only in high-end luxury models, and functionally this might be one of the best we’ve experienced. Maps, infotainment, climate controls and other operations can be displayed full-screen or split-screen fashion. Controls appear at the lower edge of the display and can be changed according to preference. Menus are colorful and intuitive.
“The giant touchscreen is a game-changer,” notes one 10 Best Interiors judge.
There are a number of less-techy but clever touches throughout the cabin as well. Lift the rear floor mats and you’ll find extra storage bins. One comes complete with a 12-in. ruler stamped into the brim – handy for measuring your catch. A foldout gate under the rear seat helps hold grocery bags or other cargo in place.
The generously padded center console reveals a bin big enough to hold a laptop. Embossed on the underside of the center-console door is a ruler, metric conversion chart, protractor and formulas to assist in making those last-minute engineering calculations that come up at the job site.
The Ram 1500 Limited packs in all the modern-day connectivity requirements, including Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, five USB ports – including four USB-C connections for fast charging, plus a well-designed wireless phone charging slot. Three of the five USBs are fully functional, meaning content from any one can be accessed through the head unit. The SiriusXM satellite radio package includes special internet “channels” created exclusively for FCA.
The cabin has been extended by 4 ins. (102 mm) from the ’18 model for room in the back and to allow rear seats to slide slightly forward and recline. The rear floor is flat thanks to clever packaging that keeps entry height the same.
With colorful flavor and creative functionality designed for every taste and purpose, plus eye-popping attention to detail throughout, FCA not only covers all the bases with the new ’19 Ram pickup, it hits it out of the park.