One of the biggest concerns from Ram Truck enthusiasts about the 5th generation Ram 1500, has been how the truck doesn’t have as an aggressive “big-rig” styling as the outgoing Ram 1500s have. That is about to change with the introduction of the new 2020 Ram Heavy Duty models. These trucks will retain their big-rig looks, that is very popular with Heavy Duty owners.
5thGenRams have been looking over the constant stream of spy photos of the new Heavy Duty, communicating with our inside sources and trying to stay on top of the latest information dropped by suppliers.
While many people expect the 2020 Ram Heavy Duty to be a tougher version of the all-new 2019 Ram 1500, we believe that the 2020 Ram Heavy Duty will in fact be completely reworked versions of the current trucks. Here are our reasons why…
In most of the new spy photos of the 2020 Ram Heavy Duty, FCA uses stickers like other manufacturers on the windows of the test vehicles with letters and numbers depicting which new vehicle is. For example, the all-new 2019 Ram 1500 had stickers on most of the prototypes, saying “DT” (which is the platform code for the vehicle) followed by four or so numbers. The platform code for the current Ram Heavy Duty models are as follows…
- Ram 2500 Pickups (2010 to Present) – DJ
- Ram 3500 Pickups (2010 to Present) – D2
- Ram 3500 Chassis Cab (2010 to Present) – DD
- Ram 4500/5500 Chassis Cab (2010 to Present) – DP
… most of the spy photos we have shown you of the upcoming Ram Heavy Dutys carry stickers stating the platform codes. These platform codes would be different, if the platform was different. This doesn’t mean the truck won’t receive vast platform upgrades, but the platform will be the same architecture.
When the all-new 2019 Ram 1500 made it’s debut at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in January, one of the highlights of the truck was the much roomier Crew Cab models. Thanks to loop holes in emissions regulations, by making the truck longer and increasing the cab size of the trucks, it allowed the truck to have a bigger carbon footprint. Heavy Duty models don’t follow the same regulations as their half-ton siblings.
But the new Ram 1500 Crew Cab featured as rear seat that could recline (similar to the Mega Cab Heavy Duty models). But if that is the case, what is the need for a Mega Cab model? Let’s look at the dimensions of the 2019 Ram 1500 Crew Cab Rear and the 2018 Ram 2500 Mega Cab Rear…
- Reclining Angle: 8-degrees (2019 Ram 1500 Crew Cab) vs 22-degrees (2018 Ram 2500 Mega Cab)
- Legroom: 45.2-inches (2019 Ram 1500 Crew Cab) vs 43.3-inches (2018 Ram 2500 Mega Cab)
If this is the case, is there a need for the Mega Cab if the trucks shared the new styled Ram cabs?
After examining the new trucks in spy photos, we have noticed several things. Yes, the trucks are carrying the same styled dash as the 2019 Ram 1500. However, interior grab handles for the driver and front passenger are completely different than the 2019 Ram 1500.
Our friend’s at Real Fast Fotography, shot pictures of the rear door open on this 2020 Ram 3500 Crew Cab Tradesman prototype. The interior of the door panel is highly camouflaged, however we can see that the new Heavy Duty has the same interior rear door trim as the current Heavy Duty models around the windows as well as the same rear assist grab handle.
We have also notice from spy photos, that the new 2020 Ram Heavy Duty models do not have a dual-pane panoramic sunroof like the 2019 Ram 1500 models. All of the current prototypes with sunroofs have the same type of sunroof as the current models.
Thanks to our friend’s at Real Fast Fotography we have put together two images of test vehicles caught from the same exact angle. Both are trucks are 3500 DRW models. However, the camouflaged one is a 2020 Ram 3500 Mega Cab DRW Laramie Longhorn Prototype, while the other is a 2019 Ram 3500 Crew Cab DRW Laramie Longhorn.
If you look at the small details of the fender shapes, you can see the wheelbase is pretty much the same, which it would be on the current Crew Cab vs Mega Cab DRW models. Wheel flare shapes look very similar, as do the body lines of the DRW box. But if you look closely in front of the DRW flares on the 2020 Ram, you will notice it has the same body line as the current trucks do going into the cab.
But if the boxes are the same, how can it fit the tail lamps which can be seen through the white mesh of the camouflage from the 2019 Ram 1500 models? Well Real Fast Fotography also caught the same 2020 Ram 3500 Mega Cab DRW model on the highway, with its camouflage peeling back and exposing the new tail lamps.
These Heavy Duty tail lamps which share the similar styling are completely different from the ones on the 2019 Ram 1500. These tail lights have bulges on the top and bottom of the lamp housing. Also, they seem to have a different outside shape compared to the 2019 Ram 1500 ones, which makes us think these will go into the current box design.
Also if you notice the surface space between the tail lamp and the bumper, the surface space is much different on the new Heavy Duty model. Telling us, this is not the same box. The all-new 2019 Ram 1500 box is 1-inch taller than the current box design.
Need more proof?
This shot of the 2020 Ram 2500 Power Wagon Crew Cab 4×4, shows the truck equipped with RamBox option. However, if you look closely at the lids of the RamBox you will clearly notice that the lid design is the same from the current model and not the same lids from the RamBox on the 2019 Ram 1500 model.
Even up front the new 2020 Ram Heavy Duty has some design elements that closely match the current truck. If you notice, unlike the 2019 Ram 1500 the front bumper sticks out from the camouflage in a very similar shape to the current Heavy Duty bumper. Admittedly it does look like there could be some foam padding behind the camo to throw us off. The Ram 1500 has a tucked in front bumper that makes the front look more squared.
We do know, the styling up front will be different. The grille’s overall shape look more rounded, while the headlamps will be very different from the 2019 Ram 1500.
For those who were looking forward to the new Ram Heavy Duty models to be a bigger clone of the 2019 Ram 1500, don’t be upset. This truck is virtually new underneath, carrying the same dash, upgraded powertrain and even more technology than before.
For those who loved the Ram big-rig styling from the 4th generation trucks, you can rejoice. The 2020 Ram Heavy Duty blends the things you loved about the 4th generation Rams with the technology of the 5th generation.
There is still plenty of time for things on this truck to change. But we have been studying these new trucks relentlessly for the past several months. So while we could be proven wrong, it seems like thus far our predictions are looking more correct.
Only time will tell.
Here is a compilation of 2020 Ram HD spy video, pay particular attention around the 1:50 mark, you can see that the (ring) under the camo that makes the grille look the same as the current Ram HD is just to fool people, you can see the light from the headlight come through that.
2019 Ram Heavy Duty Mega Gallery: