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Raptor Killer? – The New RAM TRX Debuts

The wait is over. RAM has debuted its answer to the Ford F-150 Raptor in the RAM TRX, a HEMI Powered monster intended to be the apex predator of the segment. Here’s all the details.

Building a Bigger Dinosaur

As part of RAM’s promotional video leading into their online release of the TRX, there’s a little snippet of film that encapsulates the current fight atop the pickup truck food chain. The clip in question pulls from the climactic battle in Jurassic Park between the Velociraptors and the T-Rex, which was, if you’ll recall, a rather one-sided affair. You might be inclined to think such imagery is just there to appeal to the inner 13-year old boy in all truck buyers (and it is), but its aptness goes beyond superficial naming conventions or razzing the competition.

2021 RAM TRX - ramtrucks.com
2021 RAM TRX - ramtrucks.com

That’s because RAM has done their best to make the TRX the true pinnacle of pickups, a beast on and off-road that looks every bit as monstrous as its namesake dino. Below we’ll dig into what makes this new RAM so exciting.

Looking the Part

Immediately, you notice that the new RAM TRX is a new breed of 1500. It’s a full 8 inches wider than the regular 1500, accommodating a wider wheelbase and muscular fender flairs. The gaping maw of a grille is now adorned with RAM lettering, cut through to allow for maximum air flow. You’ll also notice the hood sports a large hood scoop, complete with three amber accent lights. RAM says this hood scoop is not only legit (unlike so may of today’s fake vents and scoops) but actually accounts for 50% of the total air intake.

The Heart of a Tyrannosaur

2021 RAM TRX 6.2L supercharged HEMI V8 - media.fcanorthamerica.com
2021 RAM TRX 6.2L supercharged HEMI V8 - media.fcanorthamerica.com

All that air gets sucked into a truly monstrous engine, a 6.2-liter supercharged HEMI V8 making 702hp and 650lb.-ft. of torque paired with an 8-speed high torque capacity automatic transmission. (For reference, the Ford Raptor’s 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6 makes just 450hp and 520lb.-ft. of torque.) RAM says the new TRX will be capable of a 4.5 second 0 to 60 time, a 12.9 second quarter mile, and a top speed of 118 mph. Not only should that TRX be fast, it’ll retain good (if not RAM 1500’s top) towing and payload capacities. Properly equipped, the TRX will haul up to 1,310lbs. in its 5’7” bed and tow up to 8,100lbs.

Baja Beware

2021 RAM TRX - media.fcanorthamerica.com
2021 RAM TRX - media.fcanorthamerica.com

You probably aren’t surprised by RAM’s choice of engines, in going after the Ford Raptor, you knew they’d be bringing out the big guns. The suspension on the other hand does offer some intrigue. Rather than the air-suspension set up on normal RAM 1500s, the TRX gets 2.5-inch Bilstein shocks and huge 23.5-inch coil springs. The TRX will come standard with unique 35-inch tires and front suspension travel will be 13 inches and rear travel will be 14 inches.

2021 RAM TRX - ramtrucks.com
2021 RAM TRX - ramtrucks.com

The TRX aims to compete with the Raptor off-road and, given the numbers, it looks to give the Ford a real run for its money. Ground clearance is 11.8 inches, the approach angle is 30.2°, departure 23.5°, and break over is 21.9°. Fording depth for the TRX is up to 32 inches in calm water. The TRX will also offer your choice of an open differential, limited-slip diff, or an electronic locking diff, along with standard skid plates.

Lounge Lizards Dinosaurs

Part of what’s made the RAM 1500 a reviewer’s favorite has been the stellar interior and technology features. Given its price-point and capability, the RAM has been a key culprit in pushing modern trucks further and further into luxury vehicle territory, and the TRX is another specimen along this line of evolution.

The interior of the TRX offers an array of unique features to distinguish itself from your run-of-the-mill 1500. You’ll find paddle shifters on either side of a new flat-bottomed steering wheel complete with accent stitching that extends throughout the rest of the cabin. There’s also a standard 12-inch infotainment touchscreen housing drive mode selection and performance pages (the latter of which are fully downloadable, too).

Cue the Triumphant T-Rex Bellow

2021 RAM TRX Launch Edition - media.fcanorthamerica.com
2021 RAM TRX Launch Edition - media.fcanorthamerica.com

What would a decent vehicle reveal be without a special launch edition to help entice the hardcore fans (with deep pockets) to reserve their “part of automotive history”. The RAM TRX Launch Edition will be limited to 702 copies, matching the thundering horsepower rating of the new truck. The Launch Edition will feature special exterior badging, an exclusive Anvil Gray paintjob (which looks totally boss), and a generous dose of carbon fiber accenting to round things out.

2021 RAM TRX - media.fcanorthamerica.com
2021 RAM TRX - media.fcanorthamerica.com

The RAM TRX does not disappoint. In an era of endless, and often empty hype, the TRX delivers on nearly every metric. It’s got power, it’s got style, it’s got prowess. It’s even got an estimated price tag that scales with all those T-Rex allusions, likely starting around the $70,000 mark. That does sound like a lot for an American pickup, even in the 21st century. But once you start looking at what you get for that money and compare it to other luxury vehicles of a similar price, you find the TRX might be a bargain.

2021 RAM TRX - ramtrucks.com
2021 RAM TRX - ramtrucks.com

That clip from Jurassic Park functions as a sort of mission statement for the TRX. RAM set out to make the truck; one so big and mean and formidable that it makes everybody forget about those pesky little Raptors. And they just might have done it.

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Chris Kaiser

With two decades of writing experience and five years of creating advertising materials for car dealerships across the U.S., Chris Kaiser explores and documents the car world’s latest innovations, unique subcultures, and era-defining classics. Armed with a Master's Degree in English from the University of South Dakota, Chris left an academic career to return to writing full-time. He is passionate about covering all aspects of the continuing evolution of personal transportation, but he specializes in automotive history, industry news, and car buying advice.

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  1. car photo editing September 8, 2020

    Really amazing car,Thanks for sharing!!!

    1. Carsforsale.com Team September 8, 2020

      Thanks for visiting our blog!

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