1997 Dodge Ram Pickup 3.9 Gasoline


Most reliable truck I've ever had


PVC Valve clogged at about 120,000 miles.

General Comments:

My Ram 1500 has been a wonderful vehicle. I bought it new and have had almost no maintenance costs. This vehicle has taken me over 139,000 miles on the original engine and transmission. I still drive it daily. This truck has never failed me in 3 years.

I have moved cross country towing a trailer behind it, and only then did I wish it had more power. In most other instances, it does fine though it is only a 6 cylinder engine. I often haul heavy loads, go off-road, and launch boats with it. Despite my habits, I have not seen the transmission issues that I so often hear about these trucks.

My truck has been the most reliable I have had. It still has the factory starter, alternator, fuel pump, etc. These are items that I expect to replace relatively often, but have not had to on the Ram.

My issues with the truck are few. I have had a hard time finding air filters for it. It seems to fall out of alignment fast than most, and pulls a little one way or the other when you hit the brakes hard. Lastly, there could be alittle more room behind the seat.

All in all a great vehicle.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 25th July, 2001

20th Sep 2001, 21:36

Mine too. 5.X automatic. It hauls butt and runs great. O2 sensors are bad now and the trany is leaking fluid, but I think that's on account of the place I took it for a transmission tune up. It's leaking at the pan gasket. No biggie.

1997 Dodge Ram Pickup Conqueror 3.9 gasoline


A low performance gem


Grille is falling off.

Signal light broke on its own.

Serpentine belt showed wear at 12,000 km.

Cigarette lighter surges and fails to work. I changed the fuse 3 times but it just keeps blowing up.

Windows are incredibly hard to roll up or down.

Seat fails to flip forward when it is pulled on.

Clutch groans and squeaks.

Radio cuts out when I touch any of the heater controls, and I have to knock on those controls repeatedly to get the radio to come back on.

General Comments:

This truck has absolutely no power in the high end. I can get this truck moving very quickly but the truck fails to perform in the high-speed circuit.

I have to rev the truck up very high just to get it going in low gear.

This truck idles erratic, but stalls out only when starting off in low gear.

The truck whines when moving in reverse.

Truck won't do 100 km/h when fighting a wind. I have to use 4th gear just to keep the truck moving at a steady speed.

The truck rides nice and looks very good, as I keep it highly polished. The chrome rims get noticed quite well and the pin stripes do wonders for this trucks image.

This truck basically takes me from place to place without impressing me, since there is no power. I suggest a bigger motor and different gear train would do this truck some good.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 8th July, 2001

1997 Dodge Ram Pickup 1500 Ext Cab 5.9L


Transmission or Differential made slight noise at 30,000 miles.

Transmission blew at 53,000 miles doing major damage.

General Comments:

After the truck made the first transmission/differential noise I was told it was the differential and to put an additive into it. I did and the noise went away for about a year and a half. Last week at 53,000 miles I started the truck and drove into the driveway to hook up my boat. As I left the driveway there was a loud mechanical noise. I started to back up and there was no reverse. I had the truck towed to the local Dodge dealer. After it was evaluated, he told me the transmission had broken and dumped metal particles into the cooler and all the lines. Estimated bill is around $4000. I am truly amazed that a heavy half ton extended cab truck can have such a major problem. I have had several Chevrolet and Ford trucks with nothing ever going wrong with them. In fact the 1970 Chevy truck had an 11 1/2 long cabover camper on it for over 10 years with no problems. The Dodge was only driven on the highway empty for over 50,000 miles. I have been a part time mechanic for years and this amazes me. I also have been reading a lot of internet sites and it sounds like Dodge has a real problem.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 25th June, 2001

27th Jun 2001, 22:52

This comment is from me, Dick Jones who wrote the initial statement. I had the pickup towed from the Dodge dealer to AAMCO and I stayed to see them take the transmission apart. We found the four pins which hold in the gears had never been installed causing everything to move around and then fail. A factory defect. I called the consumer hot line and they didn't care. It was out of warrenty (36,000 miles) therefore as far as they were concerned, too bad. More to come. Dick Jones.