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2020 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel Is the Cheapest Light-Duty Diesel You Can Buy

Josh Jacquot

From Car and Driver

  • Ram undercuts Ford and Chevy by offering its 3.0-liter diesel in every cab, bed, and drive configuration, including (for the first time) the Ram Rebel.
  • Starting at $38,585, the Ram Tradesman Quad Cab is the least expensive diesel half-ton pickup.
  • Ram's EcoDiesel is a $4995 option over the base 3.6-liter V-6 fitted with Ram's eTorque motor/generator.

Ram is the first of the Big Three to offer its light-duty diesel engine in every configuration of its 1500-series pickup, and now it's the cheapest as well. The 260-hp, 480-lb-ft 3.0-liter V-6, which is fully redesigned for 2020, is a $4995 option over the eTorque-equipped 3.6-liter V-6 base engine in the 1500. Depending on trim, the diesel engine costs between $3000 and $3300 more than Ram's range-topping 5.7-liter V-8 equipped with the eTorque motor-generator.

By making the diesel engine available with every cab, bed, and drive configuration it sells, Ram's cheapest light-duty diesel, the workaday $38,585 Tradesman Quad Cab 2WD, falls well beneath the price of Chevy's least expensive diesel-equipped Silverado 1500, the 2WD double cab, which costs $45,200. It's also markedly less expensive than Ford's cheapest half-ton diesel, the $46,255 F-150 XLT 2WD Supercab equipped with a 6.5-foot bed.

Both Chevy and Ford require their light-duty diesels to be equipped with mid-level option packages that drive up their prices and preclude them from being stripper work trucks, which is ironic given the labor-intensive duty cycle that motivates many diesel purchases.

Photo credit: FCA US LLC - Car and Driver



Ram's EcoDiesel is virtually all new for 2020 (its third generation), and it beats its Ford and Chevy counterparts in both torque output and maximum towing capacity (12,560 pounds). EPA fuel-economy numbers are not yet available. Look for our first drive of the EcoDiesel shortly.

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