RAM TRX Driving, Engines & Performance | Top Gear
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Monday 20th March


What is it like to drive?

Nothing that weighs 2,880kg and is nearly six metres long wearing 35-inch tyres should logically handle this well on or off the road. Despite the ever-willing presence of the Hellcrate motor, it’s the fine tuning of the steering, suspension and tyres which is the really impressive bit. On normal roads, it turns in, holds a line and can be powered out of a corner surprisingly neatly.

And it doesn’t go to pieces as the speed rises. If you ignore the modest bodyroll and just let it settle into the corners before really leaning into the throttle, you can warp through mountain passes filling the rear view mirrors of unexpecting sportscars. Top speed is 118 mph, which the TRX can hit in one seamless surge from zero. 0-60mph takes just 4.5 secs.

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All while sitting extremely comfortably in the TRX’s hushed cabin. The supercharger is the main soundtrack at all speeds – there is virtually no tyre slap from the new Goodyears – reminding you that the truck is always awake and ready for action. But even that fades into the breeze at higher, steady state cruising speeds leaving you to count the miles rolling by in peace.

But where the TRX shines, where it’s really in its element, is off-road. Dial in one of the off-road modes, such as Baja – wonder where they got that idea from? – and the civilised road truck becomes a bona fide off-road thug. We tested it at an off-road race track, which might seem like a brave choice in a production truck, but it handled easily everything we threw at it.

It scrabbled keenly around a three-mile rock and rut strewn dustbowl trail, tip-toed up a near-vertical rock climb with just a few light dings to the belly pan. And then it jumped like no other production truck available today. With 650lb of torque available, it was possible to accumulate massive speed quickly which allowed the TRX to hit the jump 20mph faster than you might expect.

This translated into huge air which normally would equal a rough landing. But not in the TRX. It touched down perfectly every time, rear wheels first and then the fronts. The front engine protector kissed the deck on the fastest landing but no damage was done. The suspension just took it all in its stride, again and again and again. All very impressive.

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