The 2013 Ram 3500, 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cab Halo truck line is receiving an all-new interior, the latest infotainment technology and exclusive upfit solutions, according to a Chrysler announcement on Sept. 27. The new Chassis Cab also offers a powertrain warranty of 5 years/100,000 miles.
“Our efforts to simplify upfitting and reduce total cost of ownership have made Ram a popular choice for industrial, commercial and even personal applications,” said Fred Diaz, president and CEO, Ram Truck Brand and Chrysler de Mexico — Chrysler Group LLC. “We see an opportunity to grow our share in the Chassis Cab segment and Ram is offering best-in-class capabilities with class-exclusive features to get the job done and attract new customers."
The new 2013 Chassis Cab best-in-class capability ratings, according to Chrysler:
- Best-in-class Gross Combined Weight Rating (GCWR)
- Best-in-class towing
- Best-in-class front Gross Axle Weight rating (GAWR) on 4500 and 5500
Ram Chassis Cab engineers design trucks for upfits and develop features to ease installation of multiple systems and bodies without interference or difficult relocation of components, including:
- Industry standard frame lengths of 60-inch, 84-inch, 108-inch and 120-inch
- No components or lines above the rear frame rails
- Through-the-frame plumbing and electrical
- Removable/ movable exhaust and frame components
- DEF refill port is conveniently located at the rear of the cab on the driver’s side to ensure easy access at pump stations
According to Chrysler, the 2013 Ram Chassis Cab also holds class-leading features in:
- Extended maintenance cycle (15,000 mile oil change, fuel filter life)
- Brake life with advanced engine exhaust brake
- Upfit integration
Along with alterations in the suspension, Ram engineers improved the 2013 Chassis Cab steering, such as a repositioned drag link and a new steering damper with new valving.
The 2013 Ram Chassis Cab comes equipped with updated engine, transmission and body mounts for class-leading noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) characteristics.
Ram 3500, 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cab commercial trucks are available with an engineering-approved, upfitter-friendly solution for customers who require back panel removal on regular cab trucks. Because the instructions were created and approved by Ram commercial truck engineers, the cutaway design retains the structural integrity of the truck.
As the Ram Chassis Cab continues to offer more feature content, it created the need for a technology that allows more information to be electronically communicated within the truck. The new Powernet system allows both high- and low-speed data networks to be equipped with as many as 40 individual modules, all designed to improve vehicle performance and enhance the comfort and safety of driver and passengers.
A majority of the commercial truck customers need to tie into the electrical system and certain fleet customers require access to vehicle information. A new vehicle system interface module (VSIM) is capable of communicating between aftermarket modules and various Chassis Cab control modules. The class exclusive module acts as a secure gateway to the vehicles’ electrical systems and data bus architecture to enable safe, secure plug ‘n play connectivity for up-fitter use.
New for 2013, an optional dual 220-amp alternator system on the diesel-equipped Ram Chassis Cab provides electrical capability for the higher electrical loads required in select upfits such as emergency lighting and electric clutch pumps.
The 3500 chassis cab comes standard with the 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 gasoline engine. The engine produces 383 horsepower at 5,600 rpm and generates peak torque of 400 lb.-ft. at 3,950 rpm. Mated to the 66RFE six-speed automatic transmission, the HEMI features enhanced fuel efficiency and power output, thanks to the incorporation of variable valve-timing and a compression ratio of 10.5:1. Refinements and other applied technologies provide the latest-generation HEMI with performance and fuel economy improvements to rival multi-valve V-8 offerings.
Ram offers two engine variants based on the 6.7-liter Cummins:
- The first version features 320 horsepower at 2,800 rpm and 650 lb.-ft. of torque at 1,500 rpm — an increase of 15 horsepower and 40 lb.-ft. torque over the previous offering. The engine is paired with Ram’s segment-exclusive six-speed manual transmission, which features a wear-compensating clutch for consistent performance and a dual-trunion shift tower to accommodate a compact shift pattern.
- A second high-output diesel delivers 325 horsepower at 2,800 rpm and generates best-in-class torque of 750 lb.-ft. at 1,600 rpm. The engine is paired with a new Aisin six-speed automatic transmission (AS69RC) and marks the first time a high-output diesel is offered in Chassis Cab.
The new AS69RC transmission features more robust components and a new controller that improves shift performance, transmission efficiency and drivability when compared to the previous model. The new transmission is designed for higher engine ratings and enables a left-side PTO option, as well as allowing for a split shaft PTO configuration. Fire pumpers, dump beds, cranes and onboard compressor/generators are typical PTO based upfits.[PAGEBREAK]
For 2013, all Ram Chassis Cab diesels benefit from an all-new cooling system. A high-efficiency fan, dual radiators, dual transmission coolers and charge air cooler afford 25 percent more heat-rejection capacity to align with best-in-class GCWR.
New GCWR ratings also led to the development of the industry-exclusive Ram Active Air intake system, activated by new monitoring capabilities added to the engine controller. When the exclusive intake system senses extreme heat, it draws cooler air from the front of the vehicle — a function that also engages at high altitudes for superior throttle response in low oxygen environments. When conditions are wet from snow, ice or water fording, the system pulls air from an under-hood inlet, clear from snow packing and water ingestion.
The Cummins powerplants benefit from a larger exhaust-gas recirculation cooler, which complements the selective catalytic reduction (SCR). When needed, the diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) is injected into the exhaust to reduce NOx (Nitrogen Oxides) emissions coming out of the tail pipe.
Two new grille designs are available on the 2013 Ram Chassis Cab, and the quad headlamp design has improved light spread, pattern consistency and distance. An all-new premium headlamp is offered featuring bi-functional halogen projectors and new LEDs for park/turn and side markers.
An new back-up camera is available and delivered with factory wiring and multi-purpose mount for easy installation by the upfitter. The camera provides a view of the rear with upgraded resolution with higher definition and dynamic imaging in the available 8.4-inch radio display or 1.7 x 3-inch display in the rear-view mirror.
Exterior door and fender badges are located in a portrait style format providing usable real estate on the door for a commercial customer’s logos and graphics.
For 2013, Ram Chassis Cab offers 12 different colors with an additional 18 specialty paint options, including Midnight Blue, Case Construction Power Tan, Case IH Red, New Holland Construction Yellow, New Holland Agriculture Blue and Robin Egg Blue.
New Ram Chassis Cab features and technologies create an opportunity for a redesigned interior with material upgrades, improved fit and finish, new colors, HVAC controls and new multimedia systems.
In four-door models, rear-seat occupants enjoy the same quality, fit and finish as the driver. With points of contact a priority, new premium, durable materials are now on all four doors.
The 2013 Ram Chassis Cab features the next generation 8.4-inch Uconnect system.
The all-new HVAC controls include a redundant architecture allowing the operator to use either the 8.4-inch touchscreen or manual controls to alter the truck’s environment. Below the upgraded HVAC arrangement is a new switch bank with relocated controls for a number of features depending on vehicle models and options. The new console center stack includes one 115-volt and two 12-volt outlets on either side with an optional powered USB on the driver’s side.
All Ram Chassis Cab trucks continue to use a column shifter for the automatic transmission. Electronic Range Select (ERS) is now located on the face of the steering wheel, right side, allowing individual gear selection. Diesel models offer an exclusive manual six-speed transmission, the only manual transmission offering in the segment. On all models, the transfer case retains full capability with a rotary e-shift to control “4WD Auto,” “4WD Lock,” “4WD Low,” “2WD” and “Neutral”.
Chassis Cab trucks with bucket seats offer additional storage capacity in the center console. Six-passenger capability is available with the 40-20-40 bench seat.
Safety and Security
Ram Chassis Cab trucks offer more than 45 active and passive safety and security features, including standard front air bags and seat-mounted side pelvic-thorax air bags with Enhanced Accident Response System (EARS), knee bolsters, seat-belt pretensioners, BeltAlert and ParkView rear back-up camera system.
The 2013 Ram Chassis Cab models also include standard ESC, a segment exclusive on Class 3/4/5 chassis cabs over 10,000 lb. GVWR. ESC hosts a number of technologies including all-speed traction control, trailer-sway control, Hill-start Assist and anti-lock brake system (ABS).
The new 2013 Ram Chassis Cab now offers Keyless Enter ’n Go technology, which allows the doors to be unlocked and the truck to be started without having to touch the key fob. An available remote start feature allows a driver to start their truck from up to 300 feet away. Door controls, illuminated entry, engine immobilizer and panic alert are standard features with the Keyless Enter ’n Go system. Auto rain-sensing wipers and SmartBeam headlamps also are new offerings, adding to a long list of content.
Manufacturing and Warranty
Start of production of the 2013 Ram 3500, 4500 and 5500 Chassis Cab is scheduled for the first quarter of 2013 at the Saltillo Truck Assembly Plant in Coahuila, Mexico.
The 2013 Ram Chassis Cab is backed with 5-year/100,000-mile Powertrain Limited Warranty. The powertrain limited warranty covers the cost of all parts and labor needed to repair a covered powertrain component — engine, transmission and drive system.
Coverage also includes free towing to the nearest Ram Truck dealer, if necessary. The warranty is transferable allowing customers who sell their truck during the warranty period to pass the coverage on to the new owner. The standard 3-year/36,000-mile Basic Limited Warranty provides bumper-to-bumper coverage for the Ram Chassis Cab, from the body to the electrical system.
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