2010 Dodge Ram Heavy Duty

2010 Dodge Ram Heavy Duty

Episode 2933
Lucas Oil "Keep That Engine Alive"Auto Value and Bumper to BumperTire Rack "The Way Tire Buying Should Be"

Last year we chose the Dodge Ram 1500 as our Driver’s Choice Best Pickup Truck of the Year. We found its overall design, especially the RamBox cargo system and the coil spring suspension, perfect for personal use buyers. But, what about the hoards of Ram faithful that need a pickup as a hard working tool? Well, they’ve not been forgotten. There is now a Ram Heavy Duty. And it’s a big reason why we, again this year, picked the Ram as our Best Pickup Truck. Now for the details.

When the Chrysler Group redesigned the light duty Ram 1500 for 2009, the aim was to build a personal use pickup focused on flexibility.  But now, for 2010, their attention swings back to the work truck faithful; those in need of serious haul and tow capabilities.  Enter the all-new Ram Heavy Duty 2500 and 3500 pickups.

Gross Weight Ratings and limits are up almost across the board, with a Max Tow Package GCWR elevated to 25,400 pounds. Touting familiar big-rig styling, the Heavy Duty models differentiate themselves from the Light Duty with unique grille, hood, and bumper designs. Like with the 1500, a true Crew Cab is now available. It slots between Regular and Mega Cab.  Two bed lengths - 6-feet-four-inches and 8 feet - both remain.

Under the hood, is a choice of two carryover, yet seriously Heavy Duty engines.  The standard 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 delivers 383 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque at 4000 rpm. Optional is the 6.7-liter Cummins Turbo Diesel producing 350 horses and a stout 650 pound-feet of torque at just 1500 rpm.  This engine meets 50-state emission standards, without Urea injection, and includes a class-only, big-rig style exhaust brake.

The RAM HD offers a choice of three transmissions. For the HEMI, a five-speed automatic. The big diesel gets a pair of six-speeds: either a standard manual with ultra-low tow-friendly first gear, or an optional automatic.  Ram 4x4s utilize a traditional, part-time two-speed transfer case.

In a straight line on pavement, our HEMI 4x4 Crew Cab tester surprised us with its swiftness.  The big truck hit 60 in just 7.2 seconds - that’s a second and a half faster than when we last tested the HD back in ‘04.  Our truck barreled through the quarter mile in an impressive 15.4 seconds at 95 miles per hour.

With its hydro-formed, fully boxed frame, HDs utilize coil springs up front, and again, a traditional multi-leaf spring geometry in the rear. Still, both ride and handling are improved thanks to a thorough re-tuning, as well as a new C-pillar structure with fluid-filled hydromounts.

Through the slalom, our 2500 felt big, but not to the extent we were expecting. Turn-ins were quick, and the truck felt amazingly flat.  Steering was responsive, though somewhat heavy.  Overall, what you have here is a very solid full size pickup that moves in a confident, almost nimble manner. While on normal roads, the HD feels plusher and smoother than before. 

In terms of top-end capability, the Ram Heavy Duty 3500 has a max trailer tow limit of 17,600 pounds and a max payload of 5,150.  How’s that for a work truck? And to bring this monster to a halt are four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes.  Stops averaged 145 feet from 60 to zero.  For something this hefty, we were impressed with a sub-150 number.

The Ram HD also gets a handsomely redesigned interior, similar to that of the Ram 1500, complete with upper and lower gloveboxes. The truck-like cabin of the past now gives way to more style and better materials throughout.

Ram HD also can be outfitted with plenty of luxury with heated and ventilated front, and heated rear seats. The Crew Cab’s rear seats also offer lots of room for up to three well-fed adults. And for weekends, new in-floor storage bins double as coolers.

But size usually translates to thirst, and our HEMI Ram HD was thirsty.  We managed 16.4 miles per gallon on regular gas in real-world driving. Still, a lot of light duty pickups do no better. Add the Cummins diesel and mileage approaches 20. 

Base prices for the new Ram HD range from $28,165 to a lofty $51,595.  And that’s before adding options. The 2010 Ram Heavy-Duty 2500 and 3500 are tough-looking platforms that are more capable than ever, but can also be jammed full of creature comforts. With new entries from both Ford and GM, the HD truck arena is really heating up. But for our buck, the Ram Heavy Duty is the way to work!


  • Engine: 5.7-Liter Hemi V-8
  • Horsepower: 383
  • Torque: 400 Lb Feet
  • 0-60 MPH: 7.2 Seconds
  • 1/4 Mile: 15.4 Seconds @ 95 MPH
  • 60-0 MPH: 145 Feet
  • Mixed Loop: 16.4 MPG
2024 Mazda CX-90 Front Quarter 1

2024 Mazda CX-90

A Force To Be Reckoned With

Episode 4238
Lucas Oil "Keep That Engine Alive"Auto Value and Bumper to BumperTire Rack "The Way Tire Buying Should Be"

If you’ve been following Mazda lately, you’ll know they’ve been fielding some serious new designs; you could even say, they’re latest efforts are 10-times better than before. After all, the CX-3 became the CX-30, then CX-5 became the CX-50, and now it’s the CX-9’s turn. So, let’s find out if this all-new CX-90, their largest SUV yet, is a real multiplier or if it’s all just a numbers game.

Don’t think of this 2024 Mazda CX-90 so much as an updated version of the CX-9, as it’s more of a complete rethink of their 3-row crossover, the first built on an all-new, large vehicle platform for the brand. And this platform carries a host of surprises. Not only does it make the CX-90 bigger by every dimension, but it’s a rear-drive architecture, and features all-new powertrains, including the brand’s first plug-in hybrid, and even an inline-6 engine.

Why an inline-6 to replace the CX-9’s turbo-4? Well, in general terms, I6s are better balanced, run smoother, and can deliver more torque at lower RPM. Just ask the BMW faithful, or any of the truckers you see going down the road hauling more than 20-tons of cargo with their inline-6s.

There are 2-versions of the longitudinally mounted 6, both assisted by turbocharging and a 48-volt mild hybrid system. Output for the base Turbo is 280-horsepower and 332 lb-ft. of torque; this Turbo S cranks it up to 340-horsepower and 369 lb-ft. The PHEV, on the other hand, is based on a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter I4, working with a 100-kW electric motor to deliver 323-horsepower and 369 lb-ft. of torque. A 17.8-kWh battery delivers 26-miles of EV driving.

2024 Mazda CX-90 3
2024 Mazda CX-90 Side Profile
2024 Mazda CX-90 Quarter Rear
2024 Mazda CX-90 Twin-Turbo I-6 Engine Cover
2024 Mazda CX-90 Twin-Turbo I-6 Engine
2024 Mazda CX-90 32024 Mazda CX-90 Side Profile2024 Mazda CX-90 Quarter Rear2024 Mazda CX-90 Twin-Turbo I-6 Engine Cover2024 Mazda CX-90 Twin-Turbo I-6 Engine

It’s not the prettiest SUV, but it does have very smooth body work; plus, the longer hood and 7½-inches of wheelbase stretch over the CX-9, give it more stately proportions. All CX-90s come with i-Activ all-wheel drive and the brand’s first 8-speed automatic transmission; the longer wheelbase allows tow ratings to step up from 3,500-lbs. to 5,000.

At the test track, our Turbo S launched effortlessly with good grip on the way to a 6.4-second 0-60. The smooth vibes continued throughout the ¼-mile, with refined power delivery, seamless shifts, and a noticeably more solid and stable feel at speed than the CX-9. Our best time was 14.7-seconds at 98 miles-per-hour.

Through the cones, it still behaves like a Mazda, with very good steering feel and a solid presence in corners at low to moderate speeds. Some understeer and body roll will show up when pushed hard, but Mazda’s Kinematic Posture Control uses subtle selective braking to help the vehicle rotate, and safety systems will step in well-before it gets out of sorts.

There’s a nice firm feel to the brake pedal, delivering good stopping results of 118-feet from 60 miles-per-hour. You can feel a lot of weight transfer, but nosedive was well contained.

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Another unique element the CX-90 brings is seating arrangements for 6,7, or 8. It’s the 8-seater that’s standard with 3-across bench seating for 2nd and 3rd rows. 7-seaters get either captain’s chairs in the 2nd row, or more contoured seats for the 3rd; 6-seaters sport 2nd row captains and the contoured 3rd row. Cargo capacity varies with seating, but is at best 15.9 cubic-ft. behind the 3rd row, 40.1 behind the 2nd, and 75.2 with all seats folded.

As far as what it’s like to actually live with, the CX-90’s cabin is a clear step up, including on some trims suede-like materials, intricate stitching, and real wood, all consistent with what we’ve seen from the brand lately. A 10-inch dashtop touchscreen is standard for infotainment, with upper trims getting a larger 12.3-incher. We applaud Mazda’s inclusion of plenty of old-school manual controls for radio and climate, which keeps menu diving limited to secondary functions. PHEVs get a few unique controls and readouts to monitor drive modes and battery level.

Overall, the CX-90 is highly functional, entertainingly sporty to drive, and will be more competitive in the ever growing 3-row family crossover segment; and its posh interior may even attract luxury buyers on a budget.

Government Fuel Economy Ratings for the Turbo S are 23-City, 28-Highway, and 25-Combined. We averaged a good 26.5 miles-per-gallon of Regular.

Pricing begins with the base Turbo at Select trim for $40,970, PHEVs are available in Preferred trim and above starting at $48,820, and the Turbo S starts at $53,125.

Force multiplier is a military term for when strategic elements come together to produce results greater than would have been possible without them. Well, no high-level math skills are necessary here to see that the 2024 Mazda CX-90 is clearly more than just a much better CX-9; it’s now a force to be reckoned with in the 3-row family crossover segment.


  • Engine: 3.3-liter I-6
  • Horsepower: 340
  • 0-60 mph: 6.4 seconds
  • 60-0 Braking: 118 feet (avg)
  • MW Fuel Economy: 26.5 MPG (Regular)
  • Transmission: 8-speed automatic
  • Torque: 369 lb-ft.
  • 1/4 Mile: 14.7-seconds at 98 mph
  • EPA: 23 City / 28 Highway / 25 Combined
  • Starting Price: $40,970