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Nuts & Bolts: 2010 Dodge Ram 2500

Sunday, January 10, 2010; F01

Complaints: It's a bumpy ride over any imperfect road. It will wear you out on a round-trip run of 600 miles.

Ride, acceleration and handling: Enough said.

Head-turning quotient: The Ram 2500 looks tough and mean, especially in TRX4 trim. It is.

Body style/layout: The 2010 Ram 2500 TRX4 Crew Cab is a front-engine, full-size pickup truck with four side doors and a short cargo bed. Construction is body-on-frame. It is available with rear-wheel drive or four-wheel drive (part-time four-wheel drive with high-low gear selection).

Standard engine/transmission: It is equipped with a 5.7-liter, 16-valve, gasoline-fueled V-8 engine that develops 383 horsepower at 5,600 revolutions per minute and 400 foot-pounds of torque at 4,000 rpm. The engine is mated to a five-speed automatic transmission.

Capacities: There are seats for six people. Maximum payload, the weight of what can be carried onboard, is 2,460 pounds. Maximum towing capacity is 12,650 pounds. The fuel tank holds 34 gallons of recommended regular gasoline.

Mileage: Mileage depends on the style and equipment package, payload, trailer weight, driving conditions and personal driving style. In other words, you don't get much. Taking in all of those conditions and possibilities, my wife, Mary Anne, and I averaged 15 miles per gallon in the city and barely 21 mpg on the highway.

Safety: We were disappointed. Electronic stability and traction control were not available at this writing -- in a truck this big! Head air bags were installed, but not side air bags. Note to Fiat: This is where you can start making Dodge trucks much better.

Price: The base price on the tested 2010 four-wheel-drive Ram 2500 Crew Cab is $38,480. Dealer's invoice price on that model is $35,405. Price as tested including options (largely cosmetic TRX quick-order package 26T, onboard navigation, electronic backup assistance, on/off-road tires, premium sound system with iPod connectivity, satellite radio, and other items) is $44,420. Dealer's price as tested is $40,597. Rebates totaling $1,000 were available at this writing. Prices were sourced from Dodge, Edmunds.com, and Cars.com, an affiliate of The Washington Post.

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