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Discussion Starter #1
I'm taking a drive in a Ram 1500 EcoDiesel tomorrow at a special event and there will be a factory rep to answer questions. What do you want me to ask? The tougher questions the better! :p:

My local dealer said that they will be taking preorders tomorrow with expected delivery in January or early February. We'll see. :rolleyes:
 

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Is there a tow/haul mode where the transmission will hold a gear even at Wide Open Throttle, say at 2000 RPMs when you're towing.

What weight oil and what is the oil change interval?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Is there a tow/haul mode where the transmission will hold a gear even at Wide Open Throttle, say at 2000 RPMs when you're towing.

What weight oil and what is the oil change interval?
Thanks but I need questions that are not answered in the owner's manual.
 

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I live in Canada. When will we be able to order the Eco-diesel and how long after ordering can we expect to take delivery?
 

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I would also like to know the price over the cost of hemi in canada. Date they will accept Canadian orders would be great too. My dealer already has my order and they are waiting to submit it.
 

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Anything else??? Engine? Air suspension? Other?
Too late for another question? What rear axle ratio does he recommend for towing and maximum performance. I have a 2013 Mercedes-Benz GL350 with 3.0L diesel. It is geared to run at 1700 rpm at 100 km/hr, which is the same rpm and speed as the Ram I tested with 8 speed and 3.92 rear axle ratio. I assume I should order the ED with the 3.92 but would like a professional opinion.
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Re: questions answered

I spent an informative couple of hours with a pre-series build EcoDiesel and a Regional Rep or Advocate as Ram calls them--a knowledgeable and personable fellow. To answer your questions...

choochooman74: Yes, Tow/Haul Mode is standard.

BShann101: This was a special event during a 2-week tour by the rep during which he is driving from Arizona to stops in Oregon, Washington and Idaho. California is its own region and he does not know what they are doing. This particular event is associated with a rodeo series that Ram sponsors and they will be there tomorrow if you want to fly up. ;)

Ron4969 and Fireboy: It does not make sense to me but the rep said that Canada may already have some EcoDiesels although he does not know how they distribute them. Prices in Canada tend to be higher than in the U.S. with fewer incentives. He expects that U.S. orders will start in early December for select models--most likely the Big Horn and Laramie. Production will start in early January although a few vehicles may be built in December before the holidays.

Ron4969: 3.21 is standard and that is what was on the EcoDiesel I drove. The rep has driven a 3.92 Hemi extensively. His take on gear ratio choice is that the EcoDiesel is designed for the 3.21 which will be adequate for occasional heavy towing. For frequent heavy towing the 3.92 will provide a better experience at the cost of poorer fuel economy, unloaded driving and crisp shifting; in that case a Heavy-Duty Ram would be better suited to the job.

More later.

EcoDiesel füll view.jpg
EcoDiesel badge.jpg
 

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Too late for another question? What rear axle ratio does he recommend for towing and maximum performance. I have a 2013 Mercedes-Benz GL350 with 3.0L diesel. It is geared to run at 1700 rpm at 100 km/hr, which is the same rpm and speed as the Ram I tested with 8 speed and 3.92 rear axle ratio. I assume I should order the ED with the 3.92 but would like a professional opinion.
The Ram I was looking at and pricing online had a 3.55 gearing. At first, I was a little disappointed, until I did a chart. I recently formatted my computer and need to reinstall MS Office, but I can somehow work on it if you want to see the chart. I did a comparison between the 1500 and my Liberty CRD, all the way down to the different size tires. Took me about an hour with a lot of calculations.
 

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Thanks for the info Bigfoot. Everyone I talk to gives different info. I can't believe the dealers are not given a estimate time for pre orders to start. I can't even get a answer for production start date. A dealer told me production started at Warren Michigan plant last week. I am fine waiting a couple months for delivery. I just want my order to be put thru. I guess we weight. Also heard that ecodiesel is going to be a $5700 option in canada. That's over price of gas v6. Ouch.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks for the info Bigfoot. Everyone I talk to gives different info. I can't believe the dealers are not given a estimate time for pre orders to start. I can't even get a answer for production start date. A dealer told me production started at Warren Michigan plant last week. I am fine waiting a couple months for delivery. I just want my order to be put thru. I guess we weight. Also heard that ecodiesel is going to be a $5700 option in canada. That's over price of gas v6. Ouch.
You're welcome. Reliable info is hard to come by and even the Ram Advocate I quizzed alluded to the politics and difficult communications within a large company. For example, bringing the EcoDiesel to this event happened after it just showed up at Ram's regional center; the event in Oregon was planned but they didn't know a pre-production EcoDiesel would be available. My local dealer does the best they can but is often clueless as to what Ram is doing, too. At least I have purchased a couple of previous cars (not Rams) from them and have some degree of trust.

I heard that prices in Canada are higher. Sorry about that!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Is this 3.0L diesel able to run on off road (farm) diesel?
To quote the User Guide:

Federal law requires that you must fuel this vehicle with Ultra Low Sulfur Highway Diesel fuel (15 ppm Sulfur maximum) and prohibits the use of Low Sulfur Highway Diesel fuel (500 ppm Sulfur maximum) to avoid damage to the emissions control system. For most year-round service, No. 2 diesel fuel meeting ASTM specification D-975 Grade S15 will provide good performance. We recommend you use a blend of up to 5% biodiesel, meeting ASTM specification D-975 with your diesel engine.

If the vehicle is exposed to extreme cold (below 20°F or -7°C), or is required to operate at colder-than-normal conditions for prolonged periods, use climatized No. 2 diesel fuel or dilute the No. 2 diesel fuel with 50% No. 1 diesel fuel. This will provide better protection from fuel gelling or wax-plugging of the fuel filter. This vehicle is compatible with biodiesel blends greater than 5% but no greater than 20% biodiesel meeting ASTM specification D-7467 provided the shortened maintenance intervals are followed as directed.

So, if the off-road diesel meets the requirements (it probably does) it should be okay from a functional standpoint. However, as I understand it off-road diesel is not taxed like on-road diesel, so we are not allowed to put it in vehicles licensed for highway use. If we got caught with untaxed fuel in a licensed vehicle we could receive a big fine and other penalties--not worth the risk IMO. How about an emergency? Well, that's up to each of us to do what seems right.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thanks for the info! So what did you think of the truck? Did you get to drive it?
What did I think? Well, I put down a deposit for one. ;) Yes, I took it for a short test drive including highway and dirt. I previously took longer drives in a Hemi 1500. The short summary is that inside I didn't even notice it was a diesel, and outside it has a different sound than the Hemi but if anything it is slightly quieter. Acceleration seemed quick and smooth. The Ram rep said that he notices the heavier front end on sweeping highway curves although the feeling does not affect the handling.
 

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Wow... I hope I can wait for the diesel .I also hope I can afford it. I keep thinking about the Hemi because of the fuel cost difference and the fact that the dealer will actually deal a bit on the hemi truck. It may end up $6-7k less. Tough call...
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Wow... I hope I can wait for the diesel .I also hope I can afford it. I keep thinking about the Hemi because of the fuel cost difference and the fact that the dealer will actually deal a bit on the hemi truck. It may end up $6-7k less. Tough call...
Ponying up the cost of a new truck is hard in this economy. The diesel has a premium attached to it so a lot will depend on what you can afford up front and how long you keep it. Over 3+ years the diesel should show an overall cost advantage including depreciation. And the diesel is better suited to a truck than the Hemi if it's not just a car replacement. Looking at fuel cost per mile traveled there is not much difference between them although the diesel will use significantly less. Most buyers will opt for the Hemi because of initial cost, availability and unfamiliarity with small diesels.
 

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