2013 Ram 1500 Frame Suspension: Deep Dive

Posted on 12. Apr, 2012 by in Auto News

With fuel efficiency is a high priority – if not the highest priority – the Ram's engineers knew that they were doing something special with the establishment of the 2013 truck. Not only do they want to try a couple of weight-saving techniques, they need to revise the setup to accommodate the new segment-first air suspension.

Stronger steel

The optional air suspension is a modified version of the same system used on the Chrysler Jeep Grand Cherokee, but it's become a bit stronger, the greater payload and towing capacity needs to adapt.

The new frame is much stiffer and more efficiently through the generous use of high-strength steel provides the platform for stability and precise handling, while at the same time to increase decrease noise, vibration and harshness (NVH). In particular, the front rails of their elastic limit increased by 20 percent, and the high-strength steel saves about 30 pounds.

Precise to keep the remaining parts of the frame, hydroformed necessary force where necessary and unnecessary welding hot spots could lead to weakening to remove. As a result, hydro-forming ends up saving weight as well. For NVH, new, larger body mount to be improved on the front frame rails and to the C-pillar. These are not the same kind of liquid-filled mounts in the Ram HD.

Eliminate new box bottom girders in bed £ 7, and the front bumper has been redesigned in order to save four pounds more. Another major weight-saver is the use of aluminum upper and lower control arm in the front independent suspension. By this time-and labor-intensive construction, the new Ram 1500 saved a total of 26 pounds.

On the subject of weight reduction, it is worth noting that save the new Pentastar V-6 and TorqueFlite 8 transmission of about 76 pounds over the previous year engine and four-speed. Overall, the eight-speed saves the new truck about 30 pounds.

Riding on Air

The 2013 Ram will also continue to use its class-exclusive multi-link coil spring and rear axle, and it will remain the default option on most trim packages. However, new Rams soon be a whole new airbag suspension on the half-ton lineup. The system uses a small compressor and two storage tanks to produce and keep the air and lift up to four inches.

The new system offers a class-leading 21-inch step-height, giving the truck a different best-in-class ground clearance of 10.7 cm at full stretch and offer best-in-class departure and breakover angles of 27.8 and 24.2 are. (We assume the Ford F-150 SVT Raptor is the undisputed best angle of approach.)

Another advantage of the new air suspension load-leveling feature that automatically detects the load on the rear axle – of payload or a trailer – and automatically increases air pressure on the rear pockets to the clearance level. One of our favorite features of the system is that the owner can use the key fob, drain the air in the bag to reduce the entire truck or easy entry for easier trailer hookup.

The five-setting air-ride system operates automatically, or can be controlled manually via the console or key fob. The settings below:

  • Normal Ride Height: Provides nearly nine inches clearance (Ram tells us it is measured from the doorway as the rear differential – so somewhere around six centimeters ground clearance figure). This is the default load level is ground clearance.
  • Aero-mode: This is an automatic adjustment, the vehicle height of a inch cuts in order to improve the aerodynamics and fuel consumption by one percent, said Ram us. The mode is activated by the vehicle speed.
  • Off-road 1: Lifts the truck about an inch – if selected manually in 4WD Lock, car or 4WD Low – offer a little more ground clearance.
  • Off-road 2: Also must be manually selected and will only intervene if. In 4WD Low The suspension rises two inches above the normal ride height.
  • Park Mode: This setting lowers the vehicle nearly two inches below normal ground clearance. This makes it easier to enter and exit, and it makes it easier to load or unload cargo.

Most of the ride height can be manually selected using either the two are "truck up" and "truck-down" button at the bottom of the center console, next to the trailer brake controller. No word yet how expensive the air suspension option package will be, but we guess it will be packed like the Grand Cherokee – that is, it could get expensive. Moreover, we do not know anything about the payload weight rating, or drag reviews of the new frame and airbag suspension or when the various ratings change for the standard coil spring suspensions. We will have more on these numbers, such as the information is released.