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2017 Ram 1500 Review

The 2017 Ram 1500 ranks in the middle of a competitive class. It boasts a roomy interior, strong engine options, and refined handling. However, the Ram 1500 has below-average safety scores.

Pros & Cons

  • Smooth, comfortable ride
  • Potent V6 and V8 engines
  • Quality interior materials
  • Few advanced safety features
  • Lower towing capacity than rivals




Critics' Rating: 9.5
Performance: 8.9
Interior: 8.7
Total Cost of Ownership: 8.3
Safety: 8.3
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2017 Ram 1500 Overview

Is the 2017 Ram 1500 a Good Used Truck?

The Ram 1500 is a fine choice if you’re shopping for a used full-size pickup truck. The Ram offers muscular engines, great fuel economy with its available diesel V6, and class-leading driving dynamics. Its suspension sops up bumps and dips nicely, and it feels quite agile around turns for such a big truck. Factor in the Ram’s upscale cabin, roomy seating space, and user-friendly features, and you have a vehicle that’s just as capable as a work truck as it is hauling the family. Still, there are compelling alternatives in this class like the 2017 Ford F-150 and 2017 Chevrolet Silverado, which offer more advanced safety features, higher towing capacities, and lower projected ownership costs.

Why You Can Trust Us

We’ve researched 78 Ram 1500 reviews, as well as hard data points like reliability scores and cost of ownership estimates, to help you make the best car-buying decision possible.

U.S. News Best Cars has been ranking and reviewing vehicles since 2007, and our team has decades of experience in the auto industry. Though we’re passionate about cars, we’re even more committed to providing helpful consumer advice. To maintain objectivity, we don’t accept expensive gifts or trips from car companies.

How Much Is the 2017 Ram 1500?

You can expect to pay between $22,900 and $41,000 for a used 2017 Ram. These figures are based on 4,400 listings for the 2017 Ram 1500 on our site. The average price is $30,600. Prices vary depending on the vehicle's condition, mileage, features, and location.

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How Much Does the 2017 Ram 1500 Cost to Own?

The Ram’s five-year costs for gas, insurance, repairs, and maintenance are projected to be $30,600 – or about $6,100 per year. That’s higher than average for the full-size truck class.

Is It Better to Buy a Used or New Ram?

The fully redesigned 2019 Ram 1500 tops the 2017 model in nearly every way. This new fifth-generation Ram truck boasts an even higher-quality interior, better tech features like a huge 12-inch touch screen, and far more advanced safety features – a major shortcoming of older models. New features include forward collision warning, blind spot monitoring, adaptive pivoting headlights, and more. Most notably, the new 2019 Ram has higher maximum towing and payload capacities by roughly 20 percent. It’s a more refined and capable truck overall, but it’s more expensive too. Pricing starts at $31,695 and can exceed $58,000 in top trims.

Read about the new Ram 1500 »

There are several new full-size pickup trucks with lower starting prices than the 2017 Ram 1500’s average price. The compact 2018 Chevrolet Colorado starts at just $20,200. It provides a refined ride, a handsome interior, and muscular engine options – including a four-cylinder diesel that nets an impressive 22 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on the highway. The 2018 Toyota Tacoma starts at $25,400, and it comes packed with many standard active safety features.

See the Best New Car Deals »

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Which Model Year of the Ram 1500 Is Best?

The fourth-generation Ram 1500 spans the 2009 through 2018 model years. All of these models share the same coil-spring rear suspension. As a result, each can provide the smooth and refined ride quality that the Ram 1500 has become known for.

Beyond that however, there are a few key things to consider. Stick with a 2014 Ram 1500 or a newer model if you want the EcoDiesel V6 engine, as it wasn’t available with earlier models. If you want the Ram’s optional air suspension, limit your search to 2013-and-newer models.

Another big consideration is infotainment. The 2018 Ram 1500 gained Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration. If those popular features are important to you, you’ll have to go with a 2018-or-newer model.

Compare the 2016, 2017, and 2018 Ram »

How Reliable Is the 2017 Ram 1500?

The Ram 1500 has an above average predicted reliability rating of 3.5 out of five from J.D. Power.

Read more about Ram reliability »

2017 Ram 1500 Recalls

At the time of this writing, there are four recalls for the 2017 Ram 1500. Ram has found an issue with the truck’s cruise control system, which may fail to disengage even when manually cancelled. Another recall concerns a fault with the transmission, which may shift out of park without pressing the brake pedal. Additional recalls cover issues with the gas tank and rear differential. Before buying a used Ram truck, make sure these recalls have been addressed.

See more information on Ram 1500 safety recalls »

Which Used Ram 1500 Model Is Right for Me?

The 2017 Ram 1500 is available in three body styles (Regular Cab, Quad Cab, and Crew Cab) and three bed lengths (8-foot, 6-foot-4-inch, and 5-foot-7-inch). There are also eight trim levels: Tradesman, Express, Big Horn, Sport, Rebel, Laramie, Laramie Longhorn, and Limited.

If you want a barebones work truck, stick with the Tradesman. It has all the necessities and is available with every cab, bed, and engine option. On the other hand, if you’re looking for tech features and amenities, you’ll be much happier with the well-equipped Big Horn (or an even higher trim).

The Ram 1500 Tradesman comes standard with an AM/FM radio, a USB port, air conditioning, vinyl upholstery, bench seats, and steel wheels. The Express trim adds fog lights and alloy wheels. The Big Horn trim adds an 8.4-inch touch screen, a rearview camera, Bluetooth, satellite radio, remote keyless entry, remote start, power windows, dual-zone automatic climate control, cloth seats, and parking sensors. The Sport trim adds heated front bucket seats.

The Rebel trim adds a restyled grille, Bilstein off-road shocks, and a four-corner air suspension (optional on all other models). The Laramie trim adds leather upholstery and ventilated front seats. Lastly, the Laramie Longhorn and Limited models add a navigation system, proximity keyless entry, heated rear seats, and rain-sensing windshield wipers.

See 2017 Ram 1500 trims and specs »

What Does Ram's Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Cover?

Ram offers a certified pre-owned program for vehicles five years old or less and with fewer than 75,000 miles. Eligibility is determined by the vehicle’s initial sale date. For its certified pre-owned vehicles, Ram extends the original new-car powertrain warranty to seven years from the original sale date or 100,000 miles. CPO vehicles also get a three-month/3,000-mile Maximum Coverage Care warranty. Additional benefits are available, including a 90-day SiriusXM satellite radio trial subscription, a CarFax vehicle history report, 24-hour towing and roadside assistance, and a car rental allowance. There are mileage and model restrictions, so read the Ram warranty page carefully.

Ram’s CPO program is below average for an affordable carmaker, according to our analysis. Ford, Chevrolet, and Honda all have better programs.

See the best CPO programs »

How Safe Is the Ram?

The 2017 Ram 1500 trails its competitors both in safety scores and safety features. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the Ram a perfect five-star rating for side impact safety and four stars for overall, front, and rollover safety. However, four-wheel-drive models get just three stars in rollover testing. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the Ram the highest rating of Good in the side, seat, and moderate overlap front tests However, the truck received the second-lowest rating of Marginal in the roof strength and small overlap front crash tests.

The Ram 1500 is available with only a rearview camera and parking sensors. By comparison, many class rivals offer forward collision warning, blind spot monitoring, and lane keep assist.

See Ram safety scores »

2017 Ram 1500 Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: 2017 Ram 1500 or 2017 Chevrolet Silverado 1500?

The 2017 Chevy Silverado 1500 is an all-around better truck than the Ram 1500. The Silverado tops the Ram with a higher predicted reliability rating, superior towing and payload capacities, higher crash safety ratings, and more advanced safety features like forward collision warning. It also supports the popular Apple CarPlay and Android Auto systems, which make it easy to access many of your smartphone’s most popular apps with the truck’s touch screen.

Which Is Better: 2017 Ram 1500 or 2017 Ford F-150?

The 2017 Ford F-150 outshines the Ram. It’s a better workhorse – capable of towing up to 12,200 pounds and carrying a hefty 3,270-pound payload. It also tops the Ram with higher safety scores and more advanced safety features, including blind spot monitoring and hands-free park assist. That said, both trucks offer efficient and potent engine options, helpful infotainment systems, and spacious cabins.

Compare the Ram 1500, Silverado 1500, and F-150 »

2017 Ram Performance

How Does the 2017 Ram 1500 Drive?

The Ram 1500 has three engine choices: a 3.6-liter V6 with 305 horsepower, a 5.7-liter V8 with 395 horsepower, and a 3.0-liter turbodiesel EcoDiesel V6 with 240 horsepower. An eight-speed automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive are standard; four-wheel drive is available.

The base V6 provides the Ram with ample muscle for everyday tasks, and it hauls the truck up to speed briskly. The refined eight-speed automatic deserves some of this credit. It changes gears smoothly, and it downshifts promptly when needed. For heavier-duty work however, you’ll want to consider the brawnier Hemi V8 or diesel V6. Both give the Ram extra punch at highway speeds and when hauling heavy loads.

What truly sets the Ram 1500 apart from its rivals is its carlike driving dynamics. The Ram utilizes a coil-spring rear suspension, while all other full-size pickups use a conventional leaf spring setup. Its benefits are evident with the Ram’s best-in-class ride quality. The Ram 1500 soaks up rough pavement without fuss, and it feels surefooted and stable when rounding corners. An available air suspension further improves this ride quality, and it also allows drivers to adjust the suspension when carrying heavy loads or raise the truck’s ride height when driving off-road. The one drawback to this setup is that it lowers the Ram’s maximum towing capacity.

Does the 2017 Ram 1500 Get Good Gas Mileage?

The Ram 1500 leads the full-size truck class in fuel economy when equipped with its EcoDiesel V6 engine, which can deliver 20 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway (4WD: 19/27 mpg). The gas V6 earns a respectable 17/25 mpg (4WD: 16/23 mpg), though the V8 manages a lower 15/22 mpg (4WD: 15/21 mpg).

2017 Ram 1500 Towing Capacity

The Ram 1500 is rated to tow between 4,210 and 10,620 pounds, depending on trim level. While that’s more than adequate for light duty work, the Ram does have a lower maximum tow rating than what many class rivals offer. The Ram’s payload ratings range from 1,250 to 1,880 pounds, depending on model.

Read more about Ram performance »

2017 Ram Interior

How Many People Does the 2017 Ram Seat?

The Ram 1500 seats up to three in Regular Cab models, or up to six in the four-door Quad Cab and Crew Cab models. The front seats are comfortable and provide a nice driving position with good forward visibility. Front head- and legroom are generous, no matter the cab style. The Quad and Crew Cabs offer roomy rear seats, though the Crew Cab’s back seat is a better fit for adults, thanks to its extra 5.6 inches of legroom.

Vinyl seats are standard; cloth, leather, heated and ventilated seats are available. The Ram’s cabin is quiet and – despite an aging appearance – fitted with quality materials, even in lower trim levels.

How Many Car Seats Fit in the 2017 Ram 1500?

The Ram 1500 Quad and Crew cab models have two full sets of LATCH connectors for securing child car seats. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave this LATCH system the second-lowest rating of Marginal for ease of use. The upper tether anchors are hard to find and can be confused with other hardware.

2017 Ram 1500 Features

All Ram 1500 models come standard with an AM/FM radio and USB input. The higher trims offer more tech features, including Bluetooth, satellite radio, a navigation system, and Ram’s excellent 5- and 8.4-inch Uconnect touch-screen infotainment systems. Both of these systems have user-friendly interfaces with large virtual buttons and a simple menu structure. You don’t have to rely on the touch screen for every function though. The redundant controls below the screen make it easy to adjust climate and audio settings on the go as well.

See 2017 Ram 1500 specs »

Read more about Ram interior »

2017 Ram 1500 Dimensions

Ram 1500 Cargo Space

Ram offers its 1500 pickup with 8-foot, 6-foot-4-inch, and 5-foot-7-inch bed lengths. Both of the shorter beds can be equipped with the RamBox lockable storage bins, which offer additional cargo space within the truck’s bedsides.

2017 Ram Length and Weight

The Ram 1500 has an overall length of between 17.4 and 19.8 feet, depending on body style. Its curb weight ranges from 4,523 to 5,695 pounds.

Where Was the 2017 Ram 1500 Built?

The 2017 Ram 1500 was built at factories in Mexico and Michigan.

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