The 2018 RAM 2500 has 27 distinct trim levels, which can be broken down into the following main trim level subsets:
- Power Wagon
These subsets are further divided into 2x4s and 4x4s. There are “crew cabs” and “mega cabs.” Arguably the most important part of any pickup, though, is the engine. Unfortunately, upgrading this truck to levels where you get the RAM 2500 diesel can become surprisingly expensive. Consider the trim levels in more detail to see where the new RAM 2500 adds value and where it falls short.
2018 RAM 2500 Trim Levels: Performance
If you have the money to throw at an optional diesel engine, this pickup will be a workhorse for you. If you’re going to get the 2018 RAM, it’s probably worth upgrading for this purpose alone. The base engine doesn’t have the power you might expect from a classic American pickup truck. Upgrading from the Tradesman to the SLT doesn’t do you any favors, either. You might get 4WD for that amount of additional spending, but Dodge still holds out on an upgraded engine or transmission.
2018 RAM 2500 Trim Levels: Technology
This is a soft spot for the RAM truck. It lacks the technological sophistication of its peers. You have to upgrade a couple trim sections to the Laramie before you start seeing all the features that might come standard in a more refined pickup. The mid-level Laramie with a few optional comfort features like a cargo view camera is already up over $50,000. The bottom line here is that Dodge knows what kind of technology drivers want, and is willing to provide it… at a cost. Don’t expect much from a base level RAM 2500, you’re going to have to pay to play as far as Dodge is concerned.
2018 RAM 2500 Trim Levels: Exterior
The RAM 2500 base model starts with 30 different exterior options. Whatever your opinion of this truck’s exterior design, at least you get to choose your colors. As you upgrade trim levels, fewer colors are available. An extra version of gray and an extra version of white become available once you’re about $10,000 above the base price, but then color options get slashed by about 20 from the Laramie trim onward.
2018 RAM 2500 Trim Levels: Key Differences
There’s no denying that the newest RAM offers a wide variety of options. The price range starts at just over $30,000 for the base model, and ends a hair under $60,000. The top trim level is almost twice the cost of the base model, but it’s still a better deal—the base model is missing too many key features.
The 27 different specific trim levels in this range are a function of Dodge being great at charging you for every additional feature. You won’t get anything you didn’t pay for, but at least you can see how your costs are itemized. The best value is right around the middle of the Laramie subset, where you can expect to pay roughly $50,000.
2018 RAM 2500: Other Options
Perhaps the stingy nature of these different trim levels has contributed to the poor reception of this truck. The RAM get manhandled in head to head reviews against every other American manufacturer. Chevy even beats it twice— see the following two comparisons about how Chevrolet trucks outperform the RAM 2500:
1. 2018 Chevy Silverado
2. 2018 Chevy Colorado
Nobody likes to lose, but only one pickup truck can be the best. It’s one thing when the RAM 2500 gets overpowered by another full-sized truck in the form of a Chevrolet Silverado. The Silverado is synonymous with powerful workmanship.
It’s somewhat more concerning when the full-sized RAM 2500 loses out to the mid-sized Chevrolet Colorado. Don’t get us wrong, the 2018 Colorado is a feat of American engineering, but it still seems wrong to spend more money on a bigger truck that doesn’t work as hard. We recommend that anyone considering the 2018 RAM 2500 truck look at all their options before making a purchase.