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2019 1500 Classic

Though Ram introduced a brand-new at the 2018 Detroit auto show, it will continue building the last-generation truck to satisfy demand from buyers seeking a truck that's cheaper and more basic. The model adopts the name 1500 Classic.


It takes a well-trained eye to tell the Classic apart from a standard 1500. Squint and you might notice designers added a "Classic" emblem right below the Ram 1500 script on both doors. It's the same story inside, where everything carries over without major changes -- including the previous-generation infotainment system. Updates cost money, even small visual ones, and this is a budget-focused truck so keeping costs in check was a key part of the project.

The bigger difference is that Ram has pared down the trim level line-up. The 1500 Classic is offered in Tradesman, Express, Big Horn/Lone Star, and SSV (Special Services Vehicle; for fleet buyers only). Buyers who want high-zoot models like the Laramie or the Rebel will need to step up to the newer version of the truck.

Configure it your way

The 1500 Classic catalog includes three cabs and three bed lengths. Buyers can choose between a regular cab with either an eight-foot or a 6.4-foot bed, a quad cab with a 6.4-foot bed, or a crew cab with a 5.7-foot or a 6.4-foot bed.

The 1500 Classic comes standard with the tried-and-true 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 engine. It makes 305 horsepower and 269 pound-feet of torque.

Ram's 5.7-liter Hemi V8 is found on the list of extra-cost options. Selecting the eight-cylinder boosts horsepower and torque to 395 and 410, respectively.

Rear-wheel drive and an eight-speed automatic transmission come standard. Four-wheel drive joins the V8 on the list of options.

Key competitors

As a budget-focused half-ton truck, Ram's 1500 Classic is in a class of one. Buyers can also look at it entry-level variants of the newer 1500 or well-equipped versions of smaller trucks like the Chevrolet Colorado.