Which One Could I Afford? - 2014 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel Long-Term Road Test

Edmunds.comEdmunds.com Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 10,237
edited July 2015 in Ram
imageWhich One Could I Afford? - 2014 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel Long-Term Road Test

Our 2014 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel is a wonderful truck that hardly puts a foot wrong. But it comes at a price that puts it out of reach of many buyers. What other alternatives are there?

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Comments

  • reminderreminder Member Posts: 383
    50K is an incredible number for any vehicle.
    Can't justify such an expense unless it is absolutely necessary for your living.
    Working in the trades, farming, etc.
  • kirkhilles_kirkhilles_ Member Posts: 151
    Umm... How about you get either a used RAM or one as close to the $25k starting price and save the $25. $50k is an insane amount to spend on any vehicle. The only way I could justify that was if I ran my own construction business and not only needed every bit of the $50k truck, but could write off every bit of it as well. Its a truck, not a luxury vehicle. It's designed to be a workhorse. Buy an inexpensive one and push it hard. That's what its for.
  • schen72schen72 Member Posts: 433

    Umm... How about you get either a used RAM or one as close to the $25k starting price and save the $25. $50k is an insane amount to spend on any vehicle. The only way I could justify that was if I ran my own construction business and not only needed every bit of the $50k truck, but could write off every bit of it as well. Its a truck, not a luxury vehicle. It's designed to be a workhorse. Buy an inexpensive one and push it hard. That's what its for.

    Totally agree. If it was a "work" truck, or one used for hard play, like offroading or hauling, I'd get something used, already beat up, but mechanically sound. Then I won't care if it gets scratched or dinged. For $50k, there's no way I'd even want to get it dirty.
  • mcheathmcheath Member Posts: 13
    Oh please, people drop 50k on cars all day, plenty of which are more impractical than a luxury pickup. The lux car market is huge and growing, if you got the money then do whatever.

    Meanwhile, last year I pulled the trigger on the exact truck the writer briefly fantasized about, single cab Ram 1500 short bed Tradesman. 22.5k out the door. I've since dropped another grand and a half and added the 8.4" factory head unit, leather steering wheel with audio controls, backup camera as well as turn signal and front cameras, and the Laramie chrome grill. Sa-wheat ride.
  • quadricyclequadricycle Member Posts: 827
    Meh, 2015 Tundra Double Cab 4X2 with the sweet 5.7 V8 and SR5 package - under $33,000.

    The Double Cab isn't a limo, but there's room for 5. Plus you get the 6.5 ft bed standard.

    This applies to all brands. C'mon.
  • handbrakehandbrake Member Posts: 99
    You're approaching this the wrong way. A truck should be bought and used as a limited purpose vehicle. Expect to get scratches and dents, and buy accordingly. Don't go for luxury or comfort, as you should only be using the truck for hauling or going off road. When you do it that way, you get a truck that is closer to $30k. THEN, buy a GTI as your regular driver. No worries about whether you can park the beast, since you shouldn't be taking a truck to any parking lot that isn't designed for large vehicles (Home Depot, etc.).
  • mcheathmcheath Member Posts: 13
    Says who? Is this in the Constitution, this rule about how trucks should be a "limited purpose vehicle" and we all should be daily driving GTIs? Darn, wish I had a GTI so I wouldn't have to worry about how to park my "beast".

    Whatever.

    As for comparing the Tundra to the Ram, fair enough. You can get plenty of bang for the buck in the low 30 grandish range if you want four doors from all the brands. Personally I think such trucks are pretty boring, the truck world equivalent of the 90s mini van, but millions of people buy and enjoy them and that's okay.
  • handbrakehandbrake Member Posts: 99
    mcheath said:

    Says who? Is this in the Constitution, this rule about how trucks should be a "limited purpose vehicle" and we all should be daily driving GTIs? Darn, wish I had a GTI so I wouldn't have to worry about how to park my "beast"

    Yes, it's right next to the "dignity" clause of the Constitution.

    Did you read the story to which my comment was directed? The writer was bemoaning the cost and size of modern pickups. My response was a suggestion on how to deal with the issues.

    Lighten up, Francis.
  • mcheathmcheath Member Posts: 13
    That's Francouis' to you my compadre.

    Your "suggestion" was to impose your worldview about automobiles on the writer. If only he'd buy into how you see reality everything would be fine. Trouble is millions and millions of people don't think trucks are "limited purpose" vehicles, and aren't interested in GTIs. In fact it wasn't a suggestion at all, you used lots of nice absolute words like, "should", "expect", "Don't", "then" and a "shouldn't" to top it off. Sounds like marching orders to me.

    Also, where did the writer "bemoan" the size of modern pickups? Don't see it.

    Cost was the factor the writer wrestled with, and yes top of the line trucks cost a lot. We all make choices with our money, this writer is more inclined to spend 50k on a premium brand vehicle than a pickup, that's fine, whatever. You come in and tell him that your way is right, that trucks are still to be seen as old time hauling devices and nothing more. Sorry, that's not gospel, that's merely your opinion and you need to state it as such.


  • kirkhilles1kirkhilles1 Member Posts: 863
    mcheath said:

    Oh please, people drop 50k on cars all day, plenty of which are more impractical than a luxury pickup. The lux car market is huge and growing, if you got the money then do whatever.

    Meanwhile, last year I pulled the trigger on the exact truck the writer briefly fantasized about, single cab Ram 1500 short bed Tradesman. 22.5k out the door. I've since dropped another grand and a half and added the 8.4" factory head unit, leather steering wheel with audio controls, backup camera as well as turn signal and front cameras, and the Laramie chrome grill. Sa-wheat ride.

    Exactly, $22.5k. Less than half of the what the vehicle here is. I'd have no problem throwing $50k on a nice Audi or even $100k on a Model S (worth every penny), but $50k for a Ram? No thanks.
  • handbrakehandbrake Member Posts: 99
    edited July 2015
    mcheath said:

    That's Francouis' to you my compadre.

    ...

    Also, where did the writer "bemoan" the size of modern pickups? Don't see it.

    ...

    "Also have to bite on the rearview camera package. Nice to have on a truck of any size, and the Missus probably wouldn't drive the truck if it didn't have it. Add another $595."

    He wouldn't buy the vehicle without having a rear camera. Why? Cause...size.

    [non-permissible content removed]
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    Let's stick to talking about the price of trucks please.
  • mcheathmcheath Member Posts: 13
    edited July 2015
    Interesting.

    Anyways, to say that the authors comment about popping for the rear view camera option is "bemoaning" the size of modern trucks is reading into it. Cars were significantly larger for decades than they are now, larger than my truck in fact, and people drove them successfully in all our urban areas.

    No matter.

    As for the prices of modern trucks, I recently owned a 1972 F250, single cab long bed, which was fully loaded for the time. I also had the price sheet. The truck sold new for $5,838 dollars. Now converted into modern money, using the westegg inflation calculator, it was equivalent to $32,589 now. A new Ford F250 single cab long bed starts at $32,385. But that modern base level truck includes everything that cost extra on my 72', and is a far better truck.

    So I'd argue, using these facts, that modern trucks are roughly the same cost they have been for at least the last four decades, when adjusted for inflation. I'd also argue that the four door versions of modern trucks, which double as family car, are actually a bargain compared to the prices in the past when trucks were rougher tools and not family friendly. In 1972 you'd have to have a separate car for family duty, but not now. Seen with this historical perspective trucks are a good deal these days, for those who are into them.
  • carguydarylcarguydaryl Member Posts: 27
    The Ram dealer here and other places I've seen are always advertising the Quad Cab Express 4x4 with the Hemi and Dual Exhuast for $27k-28k which seems like a great bargain for mid-line equipment, good looks and that smooth ride the Rams have. That's probably the one I'd end up getting if I were in the market.
  • csubowtiecsubowtie Member Posts: 143
    Mcheath: While it doesn't seem like trucks have gotten more expensive when accounting for inflation, that doesn't take in to consideration the new requirements imposed upon us by those with concerns for our health. In '72, I could have my wife hold our 3 month old on her lap, slap my 3 year old anywhere (in the middle of the bench seat, the floorboard, the bed, who cares). A standard cab truck would have easily sufficed for a young family of four. Now I'm required to keep the kids in rear facing car seats for at least the first 2 years, continuing with forward facing car seats, booster sets, and so on until they get married and move out. Try fitting 2 rear facing car seats and 2 adults into anything less than a four door. And forget about the front bench seat. Those are practically special order items, if available on your desired trim level at all. In '72 you could order the big engine without having to get the coffee enema and hot stone massaging seats package. You probably have impeccable outward vision in that '72 as well. You want to see what's behind you, a quick look over your shoulder and you know. You look over your shoulder in said new quad cab truck and all you'll see is skyline and oversized airbag equipped pillars. The rear view camera becomes a necessity to avoid backing over small children, Prii, heck you'd be lucky to even see your '72 Ford.
  • mcheathmcheath Member Posts: 13
    Yes indeed, feature creep and governmental required equipment has changed a lot about automobiles. My 72' F250 was optioned with everything they could throw at it, but that still meant no power windows or locks, no bucket seats, no headrests, no three point belts, no tilt steering wheel and lots of bare steel inside the cab. Compared to even a base model truck of today it was woefully and totally stripped down.

    Yet it still cost the equivalent of a little over 32 grand when new. The AM/FM push button radio was worth $848 in our money. Ouch. And that 5.9L V-8 had 215 net horsepower, laughable in today's market.

    But, and here's the difference you speak of, if you were willing to forgo the option list in 72' you could walk out the door with a new base model pickup for around $16,000 in today's money. That can't be done today. Perhaps that's why people always seem to be bellyaching about how much new trucks cost, they recall the stripper base models of the past which were quite the bargain.

    To me it's remarkable that Ford can sell you the modern version of my 72' F250 for the same money, that's amazing given the huge advances in tech and design that the new truck is loaded with.

    And yes my 14' Ram has the bench seat, so I missed out on the coffee enema and hot stone massage option, which would have added only $13,232.87 to the overall price of the truck but also included automatic opening glove box doors and real leather stitching on the sunvisors.
  • jstrauch81jstrauch81 Member Posts: 64
    I will never buy a 2WD truck again in my entire life. To skimp on this feature (I realize it saves $, but compared to other options not really) is a fools errand in my opinion. Not only will you lose usability, but you will also lose a TON of buyers when resale time comes. I also used to RARELY use 4WD and my thought process was "why pay for it when I never use it?". Well that thought process came to an abrupt end when I was selling my Tacoma TRD prerunner a few years ago.
  • socal_ericsocal_eric SoCalMember Posts: 189
    The last truck I bought was a near base model standard cab, long bed '07 Ram 1500 ST 4x4 with the Hemi and towing package. Manual locks, windows, mirrors and vinyl floor covering. I think the Tradesman "work" truck was a little more stripped with no chrome bumpers or grille but my truck still managed to carry a sticker of about $32k.

    Not quite as expensive as the $40k, $50k or even $60k and up luxury trucks, but if you pay anywhere close to sticker for anything other than a limited production specialty model (e.g. Raptor) you're doing something wrong and not doing your job as a consumer. I ended up paying a tick over $19k for my truck which was about 33% off sticker. Granted this was a no-profit, advertising special at one of the largest dealers in the country but Chrysler was offering and has continued to offer substantial discounts in recent years.

    Same thing with GM and even Ford. After the last major refresh GM saw sales slide somewhat and I'd regularly see $7500+ in rebates on the hoods of their full size offerings. Ford with their new, in demand aluminum body and EcoBoost models probably won't have quite as extensive rebates but you could pick up the outgoing last-gen models for a ton of money off and even on their newest trucks I've seen some small incentives.

    If you're a one or two vehicle family then something like this EcoDiesel Ram might make a good choice if the overall ownership cost favors the diesel and your driving style and usage requirements. Even though they've been very popular here in SoCal, a few weeks ago I saw at a local dealer and saw some stripper crew cab EcoDiesels on sale for $28-30k for rear drive models. If I was in the market and could score a 4x4 for a couple grand more it would be very tempting as even the base model ones have decent equipment and interior for something designed to work and tow.

    Like most vehicles there are always deals to be had if you're flexible on trim levels, options and not in a hurry to buy. Sure, you could order a new truck and pay around sticker to get exactly what you want but a little smart shopping can save a massive amount on these overpriced trucks.
  • rod_rrod_r Member Posts: 8
    There are highly optioned 2015 2 wheel drive Laramies for sale locally (Austin, TX) for $39,450. No trailer brake controller but every other option I can think of wanting. I would rather have 4wd but since we don't have snow here I probably would never use it. I had a 2013 1500 without a rear view camera. Not good. The dealer told me they could retrofit one. Not true. I traded it in 6 months ago and they still could not do it. There is a Mopar part number for the kit but it has never actually been available. Crazy that this is still an option.
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    If you recently traded in a luxury vehicle for a truck, a reporter would like to speak with you. Please email [email protected] no later than Friday, July 24, 2015 with your daytime contact info and a few words about your decision.
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