Aug 17, 2020 at 12:13 PM
  1. TDRAdmin4 Staff Member

    TRX frt.jpg In an online presentation that consumed superlatives like the truck will gasoline, Ram announced in mid-August the spiritual successor to the Lil Red Express and SRT-10 pickup: the 1500 TRX. We’ll leave the smack-talk to others and let you mull over why they felt the need to include “1500”...

    Ram’s swipe at the Raptor comes with a supercharged hemi, more than a foot of suspension travel, 35-inch tires and a functional hood scoop nestling clearance lights required by the 88-inch width. To paraphrase Henry Ford, you can get any configuration you want as long as it’s a Crew Cab short bed.

    Three-quarters of the frame is changed for rigidity, widening the front track six inches and moving the wheels forward 20 mm. The hood and tailgate are aluminum, the flow-through front fenders composite, the seats unique with inch-deeper bolsters and the steering wheel flat-bottom with…shift paddles.

    The Hellcat hemi loses a few horses for this application—the exhaust pipes are longer than any other 6.2-liter FCA product—for 702 horsepower at 6100 revs and torque of 650, all shoveled through the same 8HP90 ZF eight-speed automatic in the Trackhawk. By my reckoning that’s a 200-hp and 140 lb-ft advantage over any other half-ton…hell, it’s more power than the 3.5 twin-turbo in Ford’s GT supercar. Lest you have to ask, EPA ratings aren’t out yet but based on some other relevant comparisons I’ll wager anything better than 11/17 on 91-octane will bring grins at Ram engineering.

    intake air comes through the grille (but not the cooling stack) and the hood, both blessed with 8x12-inch filter elements, while the exhaust runs dual three-inch pipes with X-pipe and five-inch tips. There’s also a deep sump pan and the alternator’s mounted higher, Ram quoting a development goal of 32-inch fording depth.

    With big tires and more mass, the Hellcat here claims 0-60 in 4.5 seconds and 100 in 10.5, but it takes an additional 2.4 seconds to overcome aero drag and add eight mph for the quarter-mile (12.9 @ 108 mph). Top speed is 118mph, electronically limited to keep the 325/65R18T Wrangler Territory tires on their 18x9 wheels (beadlocks available).

    A TRX—which Ram pronounces “T-rex” for obvious reasons, sits 2.5 inches higher than a regular 1500 and sports rear springs nearly two feet long unloaded. The basic architecture remains but the steering gear and front control arms have been upgraded, the rear track bar is forged, bump stops are progressive and front brakes 15-inch inverted hat rotors with twin-piston monoblock calipers. Transfer-case internals such as the chain, bearings and clutches have been upgraded and the rear axle’s a full-floating, electric-locking Dana 60 (3.55:1 gears) with an axle-hop damper. Controlling all the movements are continuously-variable bilstein Blackhawk E2 dampers with 60mm pistons and reservoirs mounted low and horizontal up front. Ram says shock damping rate ranges from 22 to 2,000 pounds of force, and it’s all tied together by eight-mode Terrain Dynamics drive software.

    Ram claims 13 inches of travel up front, 14 in back, and a ramp travel index of 605—for comparison a Power Wagon goes 538 with the front bar disconnected. The angle on their ramp is “about 20 degrees” which sounds like our old Four Wheeler ramp, where the only things I ever witnessed more than 600 were the all-leaf Ramcharger and the all-coil Range Rovers: The only IFS trucks that came close were the twin-traction beam Bronco and F-150.

    As any HD owner knows, making it bigger and stronger makes it heavier too: around 6350 pounds curb weight the TRX gains 600 pounds on a Big Horn 1500 of the same layout. Fortunately GVWR is up to 7800, yielding a rated payload of 1310 pounds, while tow rating is 8,100 pounds. The TRX has been through all the standard Ram development/durability tests and the SRT rounds.

    Every TRX will come with a tow hook at each corner, unique grille and two-tone paint, while the 702 Launch Edition trucks will wear “bodyside graphics” and exclusive Anvil grey paint

    Beyond the unique seats and steering wheel (which keeps radio controls despite the paddles), TRX will come standard with the 12-inch Uconnect, console shifter and expanded drive system switching and launch control where the rotary shifter normally sits. “Launch” was not defined, so for now assume that is for acceleration and not flight, and the portrait screen includes things like SRT performance pages, graphic display of wheel articulation and a forward-facing camera with guidelines.

    Options—unique to TRX until enough Ram drivers complain, post or otherwise let Ram know they want them—include a three-mode (one configurable) head-up display, digital rearview mirror that offers twice the field of view free of things like cargo, rear passengers, door pillars and headrests (the camera is in the CHMSL), and trailer reverse steering control that does not require stickers on the trailer nor manual calibration.

    Ram will build a TRX at the Sterling Heights plant for anyone that wants to buy one, starting from $71,690. TR1 trim will add leather and suede, heated steering wheel and seats, etc., and TR2 brings seat ventilation, wireless charging and some of the new electronic options above. The launch edition, also available in Canada for you Mopar Nerds, comes properly loaded for nearly $90,000 in the US (Canadian pricing not yet announced) and the configurator is scheduled to go live August 17 at 7 PM eastern time.

    Don’t crash the site or the truck.

    TRX frt.jpg TRX dash.jpg TRX int.jpg TRX launch ed.jpg TRX rr.jpg TRX tralr steer ctrl.jpg
     
    TDRAdmin4 , Aug 17, 2020
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