Which Regular Cab Ram 1500 Is For You?
The Ram 1500 is great in bad weather and can tow heavy loads, but which trim do you choose? Since they aren’t too far apart in price, it may be worth it to upgrade to a more expensive version. This comparison guide can help you decide which Ram 1500 is perfect for your driveway.
For this article, we’ll be taking a look at the 4×4 Regular Cab trims. There are a total of five trims for the 4×4 Ram 1500, but if you’re looking for something cheaper, you can choose one of the three 4×2 options.
The Tradesman is the cheapest option, with a starting MSRP of $30,995. The transmission comes standard with an electric shift-on-the-fly case and an auxiliary transmission and engine oil cooler. The interior also comes with a behind-the seat-storage bin, and a 40/20/40 split bench seat made of heavy duty vinyl to avoid rips and tears. The cabin comes equipped with a 12-volt auxiliary power outlet, an audio jack input, six total speakers, and a remote USB port.
The exterior of the Ram 1500 Tradesman is equipped with 17-inch steel wheels and all-season tires for maximum control. It also comes with a seven-pin wiring harness, a Class IV receiver hitch, and a trailer tow with four-pin connector wiring. The maximum towing for the Tradesman is rated up to 8,930 pounds when properly equipped, while you can have a maximum payload of 1,583 pounds.
The Tradesman will do everything you need it to do without much flair. It doesn’t contain any particularly cutting-edge safety features, though. Most of those are added when you upgrade to the Big Horn.
The Express has a starting MSRP of $32,395 and includes the auxiliary transmission and engine oil cooler from the Tradesman trim.
One of the main upgrades in the cabin is that you get carpet flooring with floor mats instead of black vinyl, like what you find in the Tradesman. On the exterior, the Express is equipped with 20-inch aluminum wheels rather than the steel wheels on the Tradesman. It also drops the Tradesman’s receiver hitch and bedliner. In return, you get fog lamps and body-color bumpers and grille. The payload decreases to 1,440 pounds, however. There’s also the option to add the Black RAM 1500 Express package, which includes cloth seats, remote keyless entry, and a year of Sirius XM radio.The packages are pretty different, but if you’re looking for utility you may want to stick with the Tradesman.
The Lone Star has a starting MSRP of $35,895, but you can see some significant upgrades from the Tradesman or the Express. The auxiliary engine and transmission oil cooler come standard along with an electronic shift-on-demand transfer case.
On the interior, the vinyl seats are upgraded to cloth seats with front center seat cushion storage. The driver’s seat also upgrades from manual adjustments to a 10-way power seat with lumbar adjust. It also comes standard with an 115-volt auxiliary power outlet, auto-dimming exterior and rear view mirror, overhead console with garage door opener, and power door locks and windows.
The features on the interior are also upgraded to include a seven-inch multi-view display and an 8.4-inch touchscreen display. The Lone Star comes with navigation capabilities with the inclusion of a GPS antenna input and SiriusXM radio, which is thanks to the addition of Uconnect 8.4.
The exterior has 20-inch aluminum chrome clad wheels and even comes with a full-size spare tire. The payload for the Lone Star increases to 1,562 pounds, which is still less than the Tradesman, but a significant jump from the Express.
The Big Horn sees a slight price hike to $37,895 and comes with everything the Lone Star has and more. While many of the features remain the same, you can see the biggest change with safety and security. It comes standard with a rear backup camera, a remote keyless entry, and a remote start system on the automatic transmission.
It also comes with ParkSense, which can help you park when you’re hauling a large trailer. This alone may be worth it for drivers that consistently carry large boats or other long trailers.
The Ram 1500 Sport is the most expensive of the regular-cab 4×4 options at $38,495. You’ll notice that this truck sacrifices strength for a boost in performance and features for comfort and ease. Of course, Dodge offers options to deck out the Sport to include everything the Big Horn has like the 20-inch tires and a full-size spare.
The Sport includes some comfort amenities you won’t find in the other trims – like heated seats and steering wheel, sun visors with illuminated vanity mirrors, LED bed lighting, power folding mirrors, and more. On the interior, the 12-volt outlet makes a return along with driver/passenger assist handles—which are lacking in the Big Horn and Lone Star. Premium speakers are also added to provide better sound than your average truck. You also get a remote, USB port, and an audio jack for mobile devices.
The Sport also has a full-length upgraded floor console, premium bezel instrument panel, and power adjustable pedals. The handles and bumpers on the Sport trim are the same color as the body, but the Sport comes with a special taillight design. It also has body-color handles and bumpers. For convenience, the power mirrors are also heated for particularly cold days.
As mentioned before, the Sport sacrifices a little strength with the maximum payload rated at 1,390 pounds. However, you can tow as much as 6,350 lbs., which is more than the Big Horn and Lone Star. The Sport also comes with all of the safety features from the Big Horn.