I have driven the new 2019 Ram Power Wagon several times over the past year, and recently had the three-quarter ton, off-road beast for a week-long road test. It is a remarkable truck, able to conquer mountains, mud or asphalt with equal aplomb.
Power Wagon is one of a kind
Most reviews compare the test vehicle to the others in that class. The Ram Power Wagon has no class competition. Power Wagons stand alone. They are the only truck with a factory, standard equipment front winch, electronically disconnecting sway bars, and locking front and rear differentials. All Power wagons come with the 6.4-liter Hemi kicking out 410 horses and 429 pounds of torque to provide enough brute strength to climb, crawl or pull as needed to go wherever the job or fun is.
The new 2019 Power Wagon now features an 8-speed transmission that greatly improves both low-end acceleration and lowers the highway cruise rpm to improve the economy. The 2500 series truck is considered a Heavy Duty application and requires no EPA Fuel Economy rating, but I assume the 14.5 miles per gallon I averaged over a week would be a fair estimate of what to expect from the low geared, heavy and powerful truck.
Two ways to get Power Wagon capability
There are two options available if you want Power Wagon abilities. You can opt for the Power Wagon trim level, and fit that with upgrades for comfort and style, or you can start with the inexpensive Tradesman trim and add a Power Wagon package to it. Which way you go depends on your budget and the use to which you plan to put the highly able vehicle. Oil filed workers, ranchers in the high country, or rescue squads may want the raw functionality of the Wagon, while others may also want a little fluff with their power and go with the full-on Power Wagon trim level. You can get the Tradesman with the Power Wagon package and still be under 50 thousand, whereas the ultimate trim level starts at 52 Thousand and easily goes up from there with options you will want.
Options or standard equipment include; heated and cooled leather seating, a 12 inch 4C U-Connect that offers a split screen display, bird’s eye view cameras, front and rear park sensors, cross traffic alerts, blind spot monitors and much more. The upgraded Harman Kardon, 17 speaker sound system if $795 well-spent dollars. Outside of the truck, the options continue, offering Ram Box storage, cargo management, and a bed entry step.
There is only one engine and transmission for the , however it is the powerful 6.4-liter heavy-duty Hemi. The engine includes Ram’s MDS, managed displacement system, to improve fuel economy by varying the number of active cylinders under different load conditions. The 8-speed is the only transmission offered. Unfortunately, the Cummins diesel is not offered. All Wagons come with 4:11 final drive gears to ensure pulling power under all circumstances.
Strong on or off the pavement
The highway ride is firm, quiet, and sure. The Power Wagon’s acceleration is good, particularly for such a heavy truck. Things get a little tougher in congested areas as the big truck makes it tricky to park or negotiate tight traffic. The surround view camera helps a great deal at low speeds. A will equipped Wagon is a pleasure to drive, and you adapt quickly to the size.
No Power Wagon is meant to spend its life on the asphalt. Off-road it can go almost anyplace its large size will fit. A favorite demonstration of Ram is to park one Wagon atop a seemingly insurmountable bluff and have the journalist attempt to drive another up to it. Once the vehicle has gone as far as it can, and that is always farther than you think, the winch comes into play. The 90-foot long synthetic winch cable is spooled out and joined to the cable of the top truck, then with the brute strength of the 12 ton Warn winch the lower truck hauls itself up the bluff. Here the camera system becomes a good investment; the driver’s view is of the sky and clouds unless he watches the passing ground on the 12-inch center screen. It is an impressive demonstration of the trucks ability.
The truck is rated to haul a payload of 1520 pounds and towing more than 10,000 pounds.
Our test truck was a very well equipped, Flame Red version, and carried a sticker price of $66,260. Fun isn’t cheap but in this case a good value.
On air review of the 2019 Ram Power Wagon
The closed thing to a Power Wagon we reviewed is the 2019 Nissan Titan XD Pro 4X
Learn more about the Ram Power Wagon here