My parents bought the truck in 2006 for me to drive. The truck that lived next door since new. My neighbor just filled the tank, and was going up hill on Atlantic Blvd when the engine just died out. Won't restart. Towed home. He was looking at new Dodge trucks, and ended up buying a new Dodge Ram 1500. So we bought it from him.
Me and my dad start working on it, and found that the gas pump had died. We replaced the entire gas sending module, and the truck fired right up.
We then found out that the entire steering linkage system was worn out. There was a quarter of a turn of free play in the steering wheel. We rebuilt the entire steering assembly and have had no problems since.
There is a small tear in the Driver's door seat facing top side seam about 2-3 inches in length. Other than than upholstery is near perfect, except the previous (original) owner smoked a lot. We replace the carpet and head liner, and scrubbed the entire interior.
Original radiator upper driver side front side seal went at like 149,000 miles. Also replaced the original radiator hoses. Also replaced the original thermostat.
Original water pump went at like 150,000 miles.
AC started to leak at 156,000 miles.
Original transmission no problems. Original engine never rebuilt. Still going strong.
At like 146,000 miles, I noticed a rattle in exhaust, probably a baffle plate in the muffler. Not worried.
Noticed the original belt tensioner was sticking a little, replaced at 147,000 miles, but the belt was not slipping.
So far nothing else has had to be done. We paid $1000.00 for the truck and have about $1600.00 in parts in it, if that. So $2600.00 for a 97 Dodge Ram 1500, that's not bad.
Original front and rear shocks replaced at 156,500 miles.
If you step down on the gas, you get pinned to your seat. Floor it and the truck does 45mph in first gear before a forced shift in the transmission. 75mph in second gear, 90mph in third. Not sure when it shifts to 4th.
This truck handles better than Corvettes and other high speed sports cars.
Lots of power; haven't found anything I can't tow. Only wish is that it was 4x4.
Accelerates with ease. All you have to do is lightly push down on the pedal and you will accelerate without the truck down shifting.
With it being a truck and having a stiff suspension for payload, the ride is a little bit rough, but not like teeth shattering vibrations or jaw breaking jolts. But you feel some of the bumps on the road; enough to make small ripples in a bottle of water.
Love the fold up rear bench seat.
Seats are very comfortable. Everything on the truck is functional, everything works perfectly.