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Old 11-11-2019, 09:00 AM   #1
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2019 Ram 2500 6.4L MPG vs 1500 5.7?

I have a 3.82 geared Ram 5.7 4x4 right now and I am thinking about swapping it to a 2019 Ram 6.4 Hemi with 3.73 gears to use for pulling my camper. It would still be a crew cab with decent interior options, so it will be our "family car" and work commute vehicle for me. I typically run around 16-17 mpg with my 5.7L Hemi and find that towing or not, it has PLENTY of power for pulling up to 10,000 lb trailers. I typically see 7-8 mpg towing with the 5.7L Hemi and 3.92 gears. I am considering the swap due to the crazy low payload rating on my beloved 1500 Ram Rebel. I do not have plans for cross country trailering, just camping a couple weekends a month, typically within about 2 hours of the home town.

I'm trying to convince myself that getting back into a 2500 truck is what I want to do. I've had Cummins and PowerStroke trucks in the past, and I really do not want to get back into the diesel game. Been there done that.

I've actually seen folks claiming to get 10 and 11 mpg towing with the 6.4L, that sounds vert tempting to me. That is a huge gain over 7.5 average MPG that I see.... like a 30% gain.... if it is true. I have my doubts, but what if?

My Ram is my fair weather daily driver, family go to dinner vehicle and my tow vehicle. It tracks towing miles different from the odometer, so I know that I am about 1/3 towing miles, but much of that is moving a 4500LB jeep on a 2600 lb hauler or a 4000lb tractor on a 1750 lb trailer. I do not typically tow "heavy", my camper at around 7500 lbs is about the limit (generally speaking, I do borrow a large dump trailer once in a great while) so the actual trailer weight is normally always well within half tom territory. The camper tongue weight per the CAT scale is putting 1600 pounds on my half ton that has a 1075 payload. There is the problem. With my Equalizer WDH pushed to it's limits (10,000 lb rated spring bars) I can bring the tongue weight down to 920 lbs.

I could go looking for a unicorn half ton truck that has around 1800 payload... that is an option.

I hate spending money when I LOVE my Ram Rebel! Dang payload rating!
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Old 11-11-2019, 10:03 AM   #2
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Anecdotally speaking, I think you will be getting 12-13 mpg empty with a Ram 2500 gasser.
Is getting 5 mpg less than your Ram 1500 Rebel worth the switch for better payload?
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Old 11-11-2019, 10:08 AM   #3
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I had a 2016 6.4 Hemi CC/LB/4x4.. It had 3:73 gears and the 6 speed auto. The 2019 has the 8 speed.

My 2016 I felt like got fantastic MPG's with the 6.4, I could more than once cruise down the interstate getting over 20 MPG. Around town stop and go and country road mix usually was in the 12-14. I feel the 6 speed auto in these kinda made it drink gasa bit more in stop and go. I felt you had to give it a bit more gas to get up to speed. Semmes the 4:10 equipped trucks got better MPGS around town for that reason.
The 8 speed thats in them now supposedly has a lower first and second gear so that should help.
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Old 11-11-2019, 03:43 PM   #4
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Sounds like what you have fits the bill so why change? Have you weighed and are WAY over GVWR?
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Old 11-11-2019, 04:03 PM   #5
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Sounds like what you have fits the bill so why change? Have you weighed and are WAY over GVWR?
I'm way over the 1,075 rated payload. Maxed out WDH gets it to 920, without me, the wife, 2 kids, 2 dogs or a bed full of wood. I'd imagine 600 lbs of humans, 120 lbs of dog and 500 lbs of wood. I'm way outside of the theoretical payload limit. But I'm inside of the axle gross limits.....

I do love my Rebel 1500. But I don't want to find myself in a legal/insurance issue over the trucks rated abilities.

The 2500 I'm looking at has almost 3000 lbs of rated payload. That puts me in a really safe place if your going by the numbers.Click image for larger version

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2017 Ram Rebel 1500 5.7L / 8 Speed, Max Tow 10,160 lb / 1,075 lb payload rating.
2019 F-150 King Ranch 3.5 Eco-Boost 10-speed, 12,800 lb / 1,546 payload.
2020 FR Coachmen Apex Ultra Lite 289TBSS
2019 Quality Trailers 16'x7' 7K GVWR Utility Trailer
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2019 Kawasaki Mule Pro DX W/EPS and Yanmar Diesel 2,000 LB towing and 1,000 payload.
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Old 11-11-2019, 06:11 PM   #6
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It sounds like payload is more important than mpg, let us know how you like the new truck.
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Old 11-11-2019, 06:24 PM   #7
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He is way over his weight so that's why he wants a 2500. I have a 2018 6.4 with 3:73 gear and did a 2400 mile trip this year towing at 62 and got 10.5 mpg over the entire trip. My camper is a little over 9000# . I installed GY Endurance tires on the camper and put Michelin tires on the truck. GR made a difference on TT rolling easier and gave me about 1/2 gal more per mile on fuel. I'm happy with the way it handles and tows and yes the new 2500 has the 8 speed which also will help mileage. Only draw back would be the 4x4 set up. Also get rid of the Firestone tires that come on truck be lucky to get 25000 miles out of them. Later RJD
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Old 11-12-2019, 02:52 PM   #8
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2019 Ram 2500 6.4L MPG vs 1500 5.7?

Hello;

I have actually done what you are thinking! Went from a 2018 5.7 1500 Ram to a 2018 2500 Ram 9900 GVW, 1500 only had 1520 payload and was over about 300 to 500# pulling a 8000# travel trailer. While pulling on a flat interstate at about 60 mph, i get around 10 to 11 mpg with 3.73 gears. total different towing experience!, would never go back to a 1500
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Old 11-12-2019, 03:13 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by upflying View Post
Anecdotally speaking, I think you will be getting 12-13 mpg empty with a Ram 2500 gasser.
Is getting 5 mpg less than your Ram 1500 Rebel worth the switch for better payload?
IMHO, the real question is this...is it worth risking the safety of yourself, your family, your truck, your camper and other people and their vehicles to save the mpg while being overloaded? Overloading a truck will eventually cause failure somewhere. If you can, trade up to a truck that has the payload capacities you need.
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Old 11-12-2019, 03:48 PM   #10
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2018 Ram 2500 6.4, 4.10 CC LB 4x4 owner here.
I tow a 9500 lb TT. After a 3200 mile trip from Oregon up through WA, ID, WY, UT, NV and CA I got 8.9 on the EVIC's lie O meter dash readout.
Around town I get 11 or less. On the hwy cruising at 70 mph I can barely squeak out 15-16. Anyone that says they get over 18 mpg cruising on the interstate is full of it. Only way I can get near 18 mpg is driving 55 mph on flat land. Who does that?
Plain and simple the Ram 6.4 regardless of rear gears is a gas hog.
I always figure 8 mpg for towing when calculating how far to the next gas station.
On our long month long trip I rarely passed a gas station after driving 100 miles. Out in the west gas stations are spread out a lot more.
Better safe than sorry.
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Old 11-12-2019, 03:56 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Bobh62 View Post
IMHO, the real question is this...is it worth risking the safety of yourself, your family, your truck, your camper and other people and their vehicles to save the mpg while being overloaded? Overloading a truck will eventually cause failure somewhere. If you can, trade up to a truck that has the payload capacities you need.
I'm with ya.

Using the right tool for the job will outweigh (no pun intended) the potential loss of MPG.
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Old 11-12-2019, 04:07 PM   #12
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I'm going to get the paperwork going this evening.
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Old 11-12-2019, 04:41 PM   #13
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I get 8-10 (mostly toward the lower range) towing with my 2017 6.4 with 4.10 gears, depending on terrain and wind. I would consider looking for a 4.10 if you’re going to be towing; from what I’ve read on other forums there is a noticeable difference in the gearing.

I have the tradesman with 3200 lbs of payload. Great truck for towing a TT.
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Old 11-12-2019, 05:11 PM   #14
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I get 8-10 (mostly toward the lower range) towing with my 2017 6.4 with 4.10 gears, depending on terrain and wind. I would consider looking for a 4.10 if youíre going to be towing; from what Iíve read on other forums there is a noticeable difference in the gearing.

I have the tradesman with 3200 lbs of payload. Great truck for towing a TT.
The 2019/2020 have the new ZF sourced 8 speed with tighter gear jumps. From what I've read on the ram truck forum, folks are saying that the 3.73 gear and 8 speed work amazingly well together and unless your pulling over 12K lbs. The 4.10 ratio isn't really needed.
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2019 Quality Trailers 16'x7' 7K GVWR Utility Trailer
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Old 11-12-2019, 06:25 PM   #15
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Truck change

The 2500 will be a better towing experience, heavier vehicle, better brakes and the room to upgrade trailer in the future. This is even more so as you are towing a variety of trailers. You will give up several MPG. I moved from 1/2 ton to 1 ton and would not consider going back. Pulling 8k trailer over 8k in the last 3 months thru mountains. Mine gets 3 mpg better towing and 2 less in town. Big improvement when towing ,especially on the highway w/ high wind.
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Old 11-12-2019, 10:13 PM   #16
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I like others upgraded from a 2016 RAM 1500 tradesman to a RAM 2018 2500 Tradesman W/ 3.73 gears. We tow a Montana High Country 325RL 5th Wheel 12Klbs. Huge improvement, Great upgrade. Currently at 23K miles. MPG is 14- 16 city, 19-21 Highway when not towing. When towing MPG is 10-11 MPG.

Suggest you get the new truck you want.
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Old 11-13-2019, 12:14 AM   #17
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Larry0071 , you will love the new Ram 2500. We moved from a 2011 2500 5.7 to a 2018 Ram 2500 with the 6.4L engine. Some people thought we were nuts to trade in a very nice, low mileage 2011. I can tell you the difference in towing is amazing and the gas mileage is better with the 2018. No regrets here. And ours is that pearl white too. Sharp truck!
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Old 11-13-2019, 06:53 AM   #18
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2018 Ram 4x4 3.73 gears. In town 13 mph pulling 6500lb trailer 10 mpg. Hiway unloaded at 70 about 18. Much nicer puller than my 1500 Ram 1500.
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Old 11-13-2019, 08:35 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by goduc View Post
2018 Ram 2500 6.4, 4.10 CC LB 4x4 owner here.
I tow a 9500 lb TT. After a 3200 mile trip from Oregon up through WA, ID, WY, UT, NV and CA I got 8.9 on the EVIC's lie O meter dash readout.
Around town I get 11 or less. On the hwy cruising at 70 mph I can barely squeak out 15-16. Anyone that says they get over 18 mpg cruising on the interstate is full of it. Only way I can get near 18 mpg is driving 55 mph on flat land. Who does that?
Plain and simple the Ram 6.4 regardless of rear gears is a gas hog.
I always figure 8 mpg for towing when calculating how far to the next gas station.
On our long month long trip I rarely passed a gas station after driving 100 miles. Out in the west gas stations are spread out a lot more.
Better safe than sorry.

I barely squeak out 15-16 on the interstate where I live and I own a F150 eco boost 6cyl. People ignore that it takes a lot to get these things to move.
I typically drive 77mph though, at around 70 I might be able to get 17mpg, at 55 I can get up to 19-20.
My last Ram truck was 5.7 and it got the same mileage as this one. Going back to Ram on the next one for multitude of reasons.
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Old 11-13-2019, 09:53 AM   #20
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I barely squeak out 15-16 on the interstate where I live and I own a F150 eco boost 6cyl. People ignore that it takes a lot to get these things to move.
I typically drive 77mph though, at around 70 I might be able to get 17mpg, at 55 I can get up to 19-20.
My last Ram truck was 5.7 and it got the same mileage as this one. Going back to Ram on the next one for multitude of reasons.
With your trim truck, I'll assume it has the option, do you ever put it into "eco mode"? I was disappointed with the fuel mileage on my ecoboost just driving around. We would get 14 in town and 19 on the highway. But in eco mode we would see 27 on the highway (65-70 mph range). Eco mode felt a little bit more "sluggish", but it did show a dramatic improvement in daily mpg. The other thing that plays a role with regard to the ecoboost is which gears you have. The 3.31 will get significantly better mpg than the 3.55 which will get significantly better mpg than the 3.73 I only mention it because it never occurred to me to use eco mode until someone else pointed it out to me.

But in order to not completely hijack the thread, back to the OPs question, I just went from 1/2 ton to 3/4 ton, different manufacturer than the OP is discussing, and I'm not trying to turn this into "my truck is better than yours", so I will generally say that what he has described sounds like he would be more comfortable in the 3/4 ton. That Rebel payload is shockingly low.
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