1997 Dodge Ram Pickup SLT Laramie, 2WD 5.9L V8 (360) from North America

Summary:

This has been a VERY reliable, great truck that still has another 200,000+ miles in it

Faults:

The lower ball joints had to be replaced.

I replaced the front shocks. The originals were fine, but I was bored and decided that I'd try out some new Monroe's.

General Comments:

This truck has provided me excellent service. It has been maintained as it should be.

The only thing that has been replaced on it was the lower ball joints, one time, because they were wearing out. One other thing that was replaced that wasn't required, it was more of a choice, was the front shocks.

Everything works perfectly. The engine and transmission operate as they did from day one, smoothly and very tight, no noises or leaks.

The seats could have been designed to be a little more comfortable, nothing too big, it doesn't bother me to ride in it for a long time.

The 5.9L V8 has plenty of power, torque, and acceleration. I don't know a trailer that this truck couldn't pull, regardless of the weight. It is 2WD. It shifts smoothly and very precisely. The engine has a great sound, especially the intake with a CAI, around 4-5 grand (rpm's).

This truck is very quick and it looks very sharp. I've received more compliments on this truck than any other vehicle I've owned.

The air conditioner blows ice cubes, probably because of Chrysler's good choice in a Sanden compressor. I'm also fond of the Denso starter and alternator, also a good choice of Chrysler, very reliable parts used to build this truck. I believe it is one of the best vehicles Chrysler/Dodge has made.

I've read many complaints about the transmission. I've perfectly maintained my truck, where I change the transmission fluid and filter when it needs to be changed, and use Mopar ATF+4 which is a requirement or you will ruin your transmission regardless of what others may say.

To be a heavy truck, it seems to handle well, as well as corner well. It takes bumps and potholes like a champ.

I've only replaced the rotors once that I can remember, it does well on brake pads, a few years on one set.

The back seat is a roomy seat that is comfortable but there is not much leg room at all back there, guess I can't expect to much in the back seat of a truck.

Overall I love this truck, and I wouldn't give it up for anything.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 5th April, 2008

1997 Dodge Ram Pickup Ram 1500 4x4 SLT Laramie 5.2 from North America

Summary:

Poor quality, but cheaper to fix than replace

Faults:

20000 miles transmission replaced under warranty.

75000 miles first water pump failed.

80000 miles intake manifold gasket failed (sucks oil out of the engine with no indications, luckily I check oil at the gas station)

95000 miles replaced rear end and entire steering assembly, paint on front fenders started to peel off.

112000 miles second water pump failed, ABS system needed replaced and ignition control problems.

119000 speed sensor on transmission works intermittently.

119100 miles all brake lines replaced due to multiple leaks occurring within a week.

119500 miles third water pump replaced (not using OEM parts this time)

120000 miles transmission starting to slip.

General Comments:

I love the interior layout on the truck, all the controls are in the right place and there is plenty of storage for a regular cab.

I have never exceeded recommended limits for towing, hauling, or loading, but reliability is poor. If I abused the truck I would understand, but it was supposedly built for this work and isn't standing up.

I got the truck new in 96.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 7th March, 2008

19th Apr 2009, 21:53

I own a 1996 Dodge Ram 1500 Larmie SLT with 206814 miles on it. The only thing I've had to replace was the radiator, transmission and a brake line. I've had some problems with it, but to me my Dodge has nice power and is a pleasure to own.

10th Jun 2009, 14:09

That's the point. a few hoses, plugs, wires are OK. having to replace the transmission (which is supposed to be a workhorse) doesn't sound like reliability to me.

14th Aug 2011, 01:00

But to be fair, if you research any mid 90's to newer full size truck, they all have tranny issues of some sort. Dodge and GM seem to be more frequent is all...