Sport R/T Torque Converter
According to Mr. Kunselman, an
R/T badged Ram will be available in Sport trim.
R/T will be a regular cab, short box 4x2 with a HEMI and 5-speed automatic.
It will feature a ‘looser’ torque converter with
a higher K factor rating than other HEMI equipped Rams and a 4.10 rear
axle, for better off the line accelerative performance. Dodge promises
the R/T will deliver best-in-class 0 to 60-mph performance in under 7
is the point where the torque converter’s turbine stalls
(slips before locking up) relative to engine RPMs and peak torque. The
turbine transfers power from the engine to the transmission. The higher
the K factor, the faster the engine can get into the upper portion of
the power band. But there’s likely to be a trade-off in slower
throttle response, while the engine revs to the new stall speed, and
lower fuel economy. We’ll know more after we spend some time driving
Ride Comfort Without Sacrificing Towing and Hauling
to innovative storage, Dodge is also thinking different about ride
quality. The 2009 Dodge Ram bucks tradition and chucks conventional
leaf springs for a new 5-link coil sprung solid axle suspension.
Why is this such a big deal? Because leaf springs are a time proven
and simple solution to manage the diverse range of payloads loaded into
the beds of pickups. Leafs also work well overloaded, which eventually
happens to every truck.
have been used in large body-on-frame SUVs and sport utility trucks,
like the Chevrolet Avalanche, but those trucks have very little likelihood
of ever seeing the same duty cycle as a half-ton pickup. It’s
going to take time for Chrysler to prove the Ram’s coil spring
suspension is durable.
From a build
perspective, coil springs are more complex and costly than leafs. The
advantages are that coils control not only vertical jounce, like leaf
springs, but also side-to-side motion. This should virtually eliminate
rear axle hop on rough roads and in-ride shake, particularly when the
truck is unloaded. It also weighs 40-lbs less than the old Ram’s
leaf spring suspension.
Kunselman, “There’s added cost by adding the links
and sway and track bars, but it’s the right thing to do for this
product. Everyone has done the most they can do with ride comfort on
a Hotchkiss suspension.”
Kunselman says that buyers won’t sacrifice any towing
or hauling capability with the new back suspension versus the outgoing
Ram’s capacities. The truck is capable of handling a payload of
up to an estimated 1,840 pounds and towing up to an estimated 9,100 pounds.
“We’re keeping payload up and enhancing comfort,” says
Aftermarket companies that sell air suspensions are also going to be pleased
with this feature, because their products will be much easier to install
with factory coils. No more bolting helper springs onto leaf springs.