By on April 9, 2014

2014 Ram Power Wagon

 

Dodge is set to revive the Power Wagon as a high end heavy-duty truck option for Ram buyers.

Based on a Ram 2500, the Power Wagon packs a 6.4L V8 making 410 horsepower and 429 lb-ft. Power is put to the ground via a 6-speed automatic.

Additional features include  a reworked suspension with an additional two inches of lift, locking differentials and a 12,000-pound winch. New for 2014 (and standard for all Ram HD trucks) is a front axle disconnect system for an additional 1 mpg of fuel economy.

Bilstein shocks are featured at all four corners, and a sway bar disconnect system can be engaged in four-wheel drive at speeds below 18 mph. At the rear, the 2500 adopts the Ram 1500’s coil-spring suspension.

While the Raptor is more of a single-purpose truck (meant for driving around off-road, specifically in sand) the Power Wagon looks to revive the heavy-duty/off-road capable truck that has been the traditional positioning of the Power Wagon. The adoption of the coil-spring suspension will likely prove controversial for many truck die-hards.

 

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104 Comments on “2014 Ram Power Wagon Looks To Make The Raptor Extinct...”


  • avatar

    The way I see it, no one is “racing” a truck. The days of the “SRT-10″ are long gone. A person doing work in a truck needs torque to move loads and I feel it makes more sense to have diesels and turbodiesels which can run on biodiesel – until TESLA figures out a way to build an affordable truck (call it: the Model T).

    6.2-Liter and 6.4-L engines just don’t make sense when you could get so much more fuel economy and power out of a diesel.

    • 0 avatar
      Hummer

      Diesels don’t make any sense when it costs twice as much to keep running over 300k miles.

      • 0 avatar
        PonchoIndian

        Diesels make even less sense in an off-road focused truck where it puts so much more weight over the front end than the Hemi.

        • 0 avatar
          Zykotec

          Diesels actually make sense for offroading, both for torque, and for going through water.

          • 0 avatar
            stuki

            ????

            Wouldn’t logic dictate that off road, on lose surfaces, tire traction would limit forward momentum, before the “limited” torque of a modern 6.4 liter V8 gasser?

            As for going through water, old school mechanical diesels may have had a meaningful advantage. But not the engines being put in road legal trucks today.

          • 0 avatar
            RobertRyan

            Correct. Diesels vastly better Off Road

      • 0 avatar
        Compaq Deskpro

        I have heard this a lot. Could you elaborate on what exactly needs to be serviced on diesel engines?

        • 0 avatar
          Hummer

          Injectors
          Higher oil costs
          Higher fuel costs
          DPF has been a problem that no one has been able to solve and can easily be a several thousand dollar problem
          DEF costs
          Turbos will eventually need rebuilding
          Fuel filters/ water accumulators replaced every 10k
          New diesels are extremely affected by fuel quality whereas old diesels would darn near eat anything thrown at it.
          Diesels w/o emmisions make a ton of sense, but emissions adds too much complexity and cost to make sense.

          • 0 avatar
            matador

            A 1999 Ford 7.3 uses between 12-15 quarts of oil. A 1999 Ford 5.4 uses 6 qts. As does the Triton V-10.

            Hummer did forget one thing that makes diesels so expensive- the cost to purchase one in the first place.

            Diesels may be nicer, but give me my big block. For the little use I give it, it’s cheaper overall.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Much of that is self-inflicted by gov’t and industry.

      • 0 avatar
        daver277

        If we are talking ‘sense’, 95% of the time it doesn’t make any sense to drag around 6,000 of truck just to plug a gap in self-esteem.

    • 0 avatar
      Carlson Fan

      You buy a diesel for the pulling power to tow, not to save money. If run your PU like an OTR trucker it might save you money. But for most it’s about pulling big heavy loads with lots of wind resistance comfortably, not saving money.

    • 0 avatar
      tuffjuff

      This surprises me coming from you, BTS.

  • avatar
    thegamper

    When it comes to trucks, I feel that most truck buyers dont really want this sort of capability in their trucks since the standard versions of most pickup trucks are already overkill for their needs by several orders of magnitude. So something like this will really bring out the D’bags in droves, the folks who just want something massive, offensive and totally unnecessary. Something that they can use to take up several parking spots at Home Depot and tailgate other motorists to the extent that the grill of the pickup takes up the lead driver’s entire rear view mirror. Basically a tool that a tool can use to act like a tool.

    That being said, the Ford Raptor is effing awesome and this doesnt even come close to matching its desirablility in my view.

    • 0 avatar
      Hummer

      This simply makes more sense than the raptor while being more capable and better looking.
      I bet these frames don’t bend anywhere near as easily, nor do I need two trucks for play and work.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        @Hummer – this Power Wagon takes drop in cargo capacity over the last Power Wagon. IIRC this new one can carry 1,490 lb. The 2013 PW was around 1,800lb.
        In reality, this is just as much a play toy as the Raptor.

        I live in Northern BC Canada and I rarely see these trucks used for work. Even the police, fire/rescue, Conservation Officers etc. do not use them.

    • 0 avatar
      Joe McKinney

      This will appeal to the guy who simply cannot be seen taking his kids to ball pratice in a minivan.

    • 0 avatar
      stuki

      The Raptor is kickass for what it does, but it one heck of a one trick pony. This one is a bit more rounded. Particularly if Ram could get around to sell an 8ft bed version, to fit a reasonably sized camper. And offer an extended gas tank as well.

  • avatar
    MJW82

    Hopefully this helps lead to a revival of Simon and Simon in American Culture.

  • avatar
    BunkerMan

    How can it “make the Raptor extinct?” This isn’t even the same class of truck. I don’t think too many miners or oilfield workers are using a Raptor for work, or hauling heavy equipment with it.

    Is it because of the stickers?

    For that matter, how many HD truck buyers are going to want coil springs on the rear of their truck? I’ve seen 1500 versions of the coil-sprung Ram sagging in the back with a moderate load from Home Depot.

    I agree with the previous comments. This will be another factory Bro-dozer.

  • avatar
    IHateCars

    “This simply makes more sense than the raptor while being more capable and better looking.
    I bet these frames don’t bend anywhere near as easily, nor do I need two trucks for play and work.”

    Yes, because a Hummer is soooo much more practical. Please.

    I like the Power Wagon, and I drive a Raptor….two different animals. The Raptor was never designed/built to be a work truck, yet Ford sells every Raptor they make. The Power Wagon appeals to a truck buyer who may use it more for work and a little play on the weekends. I’m sure that Dodge/Ram…whatever, will do well with it. But again, two different missions.

    However, IMO Dodge should’ve revived the old Power Wagon graphics from the ’70s/’80s, that would’ve looked awesome!

    As far as the Raptor frame bending meme that the Chev guys like to trot out, when you have people that modify rear springs/shocks on a Raptor for more travel without addressing the bump stops, then run them over three foot woops at 100 MPH….yeah, sh!t’s gonna bend/break!

    • 0 avatar
      Carlson Fan

      I can’t believe how many Raptors I see in MN. I’m not sure why as there aren’t any sand dunes here or places to drive them offroad unless it is on your own land.

      • 0 avatar
        IHateCars

        Sand dunes are fun (there’s a few sand pits around here that we hit once in a while), but there’s also lots of fire roads and trails as well. A buddy of mine has a dirtbike/ATV track that he built on his farm so we’ll run that as well, him in his Jeep. I wouldn’t want to take a truck this big on tight trails or rock crawling.

        But yeah, I would love to take a drive down to Nevada or Arizona and do some real desert pre-running. One day…

      • 0 avatar
        daver277

        My guess is that in MN there ate lots of people with good credit ratings AND low self-esteem.

        • 0 avatar
          lost1

          I just don’t get it with the”low self esteem” WTF does that have to do with any purchase of any vehicle!! If you like it and can pay for it, buy it, and enjoy it.

          • 0 avatar
            thelaine

            Lost 1, I think it is a defensive reaction by people who are frightened and intimidated by pickup trucks and some of their drivers.

  • avatar
    imag

    I hope your tongue was buried in your cheek when you wrote that headline, Derek. I think even the TTAC logo is embarrassed.

  • avatar
    Kyree S. Williams

    And here we see the next oversized pickup truck that will tailgate me for two miles in the passing lane even though I’m already going 15 MPH more than the cars in the slow lane.

    Still, I agree with other commenters that the Raptor and the Power Wagon aren’t likely to impact one-another. The Power Wagon will surely cost a lot less than the Raptor, too…

    • 0 avatar
      srogers

      And hopefully you’ll move the right lane and let it pass since the left is the ‘passing lane’. Unless you are the “I’ll choose the correct level of speeding” guy.

      • 0 avatar
        Kyree S. Williams

        Sometimes I will, but other times it’s a hassle. I’ll have to slow down significantly to get into the slower lane if it’s crowded up (which it usually is), and then I’ll not be able to get back into the passing lane. If I feel that there’s real danger, I’ll move over, but I usually refuse to be inconvenienced by some agressive nut. Some people should just take a chill-pill.

        • 0 avatar
          LectroByte

          And some people should Keep Right Except To Pass. It’s not just a good idea, it’s the law.

          • 0 avatar
            Kyree S. Williams

            First of all, that isn’t a law in all municipalities. Second of all, if I’m using the left lane to go faster than the center and right lanes (which are bumper-to-bumper for two miles ahead, because tons of people are using those lanes to merge onto a different highway during rush-hour), then I’m passing. Third, the person at the front of the passing lane absolutely does get to set the speed limit, just by the natural order of things. Only a true a**hole would see the front-most passing at a reasonable but brisk speed as “*trying* to choose the correct level of speeding (for everyone else)”

            Bottom line: if some jerk rear ends me in this scenario, I doubt I’ll get a ticket or a claim on *my* insurance just because I was doing 80 versus 65 in the slower lanes, but said tailgating jerk wanted to do 87.

  • avatar
    PonchoIndian

    These are cool trucks. I like the size and more subtle approach of the 2005 Power Wagon better, but it is still nice to see Dodge making what is essentially the Rubicon version of the pickup truck.

    The Raptor and the Power Wagon both have their place and I would think their own group of enthusiast. Just depends on what you’re looking to do with your ride.

    I don’t think this is really a Bro-truck. It is a little loud in the looks department, but it doesn’t have 22 inch chrome wheels and can actually do work, unlike the typical bro-rider wants.

    • 0 avatar
      IHateCars

      “The Raptor and the Power Wagon both have their place and I would think their own group of enthusiast. Just depends on what you’re looking to do with your ride.”

      Agreed.

      Viva la choice!

    • 0 avatar
      stuki

      They just need to offer an 8ft bed version to fit a full size camper; and I’ll be there, assuming the rest hold up and the range isn’t too hopeless. I know it’s sacrilige to HD truckers, but I’d honestly prefer the beefed up HD frame and Power Wagon parts fitted with the sweet V6/8speed combo from the 1500. Hauling a fullsize 4wheels camper and a bike or two on a lift out back, is too much for a 1500, but the range of the big V8s tend to leave a lot to be desired. And the V6/8speed shifts and revs so smooth that I’d happily put up with needing higher rpms up the steepest freeway grades, in order to get the fuel savings.

  • avatar
    danio3834

    I like it. This will be perfect for my wife’s trips to Costco.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      Yes this truck is great for when your off-road experience consists of being asked to park in the grass at the local outdoor concert venue.

    • 0 avatar
      davefromcalgary

      Serious question, will FCA pushing axle disconnect technology onto Cherokees, 200s and Power Wagons be any cause for a reliability concern?

      Because its important when your wife gets home from Costco, that she be able to engage the low range for the wet leaves on the driveway.

      • 0 avatar
        azmtbkr81

        It’s a sway bar disconnect which should allow for better suspension articulation over speed bumps at Target…or Bass Pro Shop depending on your choice of vehicle.

        I don’t know exactly how the disconnect mechanisms works but it does strike me as a fragile and unnecessary gew-gaw.

        • 0 avatar
          LALoser

          LOL! Those speed bumps can be a challenge.

        • 0 avatar
          danio3834

          Dave is talking about the active clutch that disconnects the front driveshaft while driving to reduce driveline losses and save fuel. It’s one more thing to fail, so statistically, vehicle lines with the feature versus the same vehicles without it will have higher warranty expense, even if slightly. Should the average individual vehicle owner be concerned? Probably no moreso than any other AWD vehicle that uses on demand clutches to send power to the secondary drive axle.

          • 0 avatar
            azmtbkr81

            Interesting, that would make sense in an AWD system, I guess I am surprised that the Ram doesn’t have a traditional transfer case and locking hubs to achieve the same result.

          • 0 avatar
            gtemnykh

            I wonder how different this is from A.D.D.s (automatic differential disconnect) that many SUVs/trucks have had since the 90s? Both my 1998 MPV and my 1996 4Runner have them. Disconnects the front axles to prevent to front differential to constantly be spinning and causing drag when not in use. Disconnecting the axles from the hubs is even better, my brother picked up an easy 2 mpg mixed/highway after installing manual hubs on his Grand Vitara instead of the ‘dummy’ connectors that made a solid connection to the axles all the time. Likewise many trucks and SUVs had auto-locking hubs.

        • 0 avatar
          matador

          Okay- it’ll go through Costco and speed bumps. Any 4×4 truck can do that.

          Will this have a locking differential? Our bank has an entrance with a curb you have to climb. It’s pretty tricky to get over.

          I need to know if I can power my up this curb to withdraw more money from my account to do manly stuff with the truck.

          If you’ll excuse me, I’m off to torment a Honda Civic by tailgating extremely close. Wish me luck!

    • 0 avatar

      Humm, hard to gauge if this was ironic. Thinking, thinking, nope, can’t come to a conclusion.

  • avatar
    alsorl

    Sick truck. Makes a Toyoda tundra look like grandpa’s ride to Church. But wish they would stop putting decals on hoods. They fade and crack up in a year or so. Would be nice if there was an option for no stickers on the hood.

  • avatar
    Drzhivago138

    Not quite on the same topic, but is anyone else a little bit bummed that they never made a Quad Cab model of the new HD’s? A Quad Cab/8′ bed 2500 would be totally sicknasty, Power Wagon or not.

  • avatar
    Carlson Fan

    I like it, but the first thing that needs to be done to it when you get it home is grab the heat gun and remove all that tape off the box and tailgate. They’ll have no problem moving these off dealer lots. Even a GM truck guy like me immediately recognizes the words “Power Wagon”.

  • avatar
    Felis Concolor

    A heavy duty truck with coil springs is controversial?

    [looks out the window at Pinzgauer 710K]
    [rereads last sentence]

    HAAAHAHAHAHAHAAAHHH!!!

  • avatar
    Mandalorian

    I love trucks in general, and especially off-road ones. I like the Power Wagon a lot, but it seems like it would do much better as a 1500.

    • 0 avatar
      Hummer

      Raptor is too weak w/ half ton frame, no need to go that same route. Plus the 3/4 has a solid front end.

      • 0 avatar
        Carlson Fan

        Have you ever watched a you-tube video of a stock Raptor off-roading and jumping? Looks to me like the frame and the rest of the chassis is plenty strong.

        • 0 avatar
          Hummer

          Outliers predict possible future flaws, putting it to the test and not accounting for outliers is a recipe for disaster. There should be fuses, whether that be ballpoints suspension design or what not, the frame shouldn’t be the first break point.

          The raptor is over 80inches wide and weighs every bit of it, you can’t tell me a 1/2 frame is sufficient for offroading if its going to buckle near the center. That says the front and rear are well built but the frame isn’t up to task. Ford should have seen this and upgraded the center section that quite frankly should be an obvious weak point.
          Honestly it wouldn’t have been a big deal if Ford had just fixed the flaw to begin with, rather than deny its existence.


          Besides this thread and the threat the power wagon makes is null simply because Ford is discontinuing the raptor anyhow.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            Pickup frames are always weakest between the cab and bed. Not that the frame itself is weaker there, but cab and bed reinforce the the frame, fore and aft. You could even say they’re designed to flex there, if not bend or yield in an accident.

            The Raptor won’t return in ’15, but who knows after that? It outsells the Corvette and has to be straight profit.

          • 0 avatar
            PonchoIndian

            I thought they did upgrade the gauge of steel used in the frame after the few owners (who modified their trucks and then jumped them 10 feet in the air) bent their frames.

          • 0 avatar
            Hummer

            Yes normal pickups don’t need the reinforcement in the center, but if significant strain in that area is likely in the future it should be one of the first things to be beefed up. Which is why I never understood why Ford would let that happen, to me it just makes sense, you wouldn’t put a half ton rear axle on a 3/4 chassis and expect it to last.

            Maybe they did finally upgrade the steel used, however based on an article here a while back that frames would no longer be made with one grade, but rather have the tow package with bigger gauge, I have little trust in Ford saying they fixed the problem, the trucks too big to have ever been on a halfton frame to begin with. Like Dodges 1500 megacab, Ram used the 3/4 frame but the truck is considered a 1/2.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            If the Raptor frame was too weak, you’d think it would bend upward, not downward. What happened when idiots took out leaves in the spring pack, to control rebound, the FOX shocks were no longer a match for the weaker springs. The mount points for the shocks, both canted forward, took most or all the impact, rotating the frame downward. Raptors have more than enough frame for normal hard use or abuse.

  • avatar
    05lgt

    When I win the lottery I will have a Raptor and a Power Wagon. They’re not different versions of the same thing. Baja and Rubicon aren’t the same road. These “aspire” to those routes without giving up the real use, posing in town.

  • avatar
    67dodgeman

    Inside picture – two seats, three cup holders. If God is my co-pilot, he may not have room to sit but he damn sure has a place to set his beer.

    Traction control – will Ram finally make it so you can completely turn off traction control? Right now all you can do is turn it down a notch, but it’s still always on.

    Bed – remove the graphics and give a 8′ bed option.

    Back seat – the folding floor thingie isn’t all that great (I have a 2013 model 1500). The Ford I tested had much more rear seat room with a flat floor option and no folding plastic gimicks.

    I’ve yet to ever drive anywhere (in more than 30 years of truck ownership) where I needed anything more than 2WD. Hunting, fishing, camping, always within reach of a regular half-ton. So I’m probably not a potential customer unless they come out with the Simon and Simon tribute edition, complete with real bullet holes.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      Puts me in mind of the Holland & Holland Range Rover, with built-in gun cases. And scotch.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      “Traction control – will Ram finally make it so you can completely turn off traction control? Right now all you can do is turn it down a notch, but it’s still always on.”

      The traction control can be turned completely off, however the *stability control* can only be turned down. Via the button, anyway.

      How this translates to real life is:

      Deep mud or snow going straight? Spin away to your heart’s content.
      360s on the spot? Lot’s of flashing lights in the IC and attempts to cut power with possible brake activation.

      • 0 avatar
        67dodgeman

        Danio – I must be missing something, cause even with the traction control button “off” there’s still some computer control over-riding my throttle foot. And that’s on standard straight line drag racing type takeoffs. The Dodge forums are full of advice on how to cheat the system, such as disconnecting wires to the front wheel sensors and such. But everything I’ve read indicates that some level of traction control always stays on. This matches my driving experience.

        I’d love to be wrong, so please let me where you’re getting that info from.

        • 0 avatar
          danio3834

          Different vehicles have different thresholds of ESC intervention, but in general, modern Chrysler vehicles will allow straight line wheel spin on takeoff with the TC/Stability button “OFF”. If the vehicle is moving fast enough forward or there is lateral movement along with wheel spin, the stability control might still kick in. That could be what you’re experiencing.

          So in that sense, traction control is never truly “OFF” in factory calibration. But, with the button “OFF” capable vehicles will do a burnout and spin their wheels in the snow or mud. So in that sense, it can be turned off.

          To fully disable the stability control, you could induce a fault by unplugging a sensor, but I prefer just to yank the ABS module logic fuse from the power distribution box.

          • 0 avatar
            67dodgeman

            Thanks for the feedback. I’m going do so more checking. I just the want the ability every now and then to squeal the tires (on pavement) to justify myself getting the HEMI over the v-6. However, seems that traction control cuts in real heavy no matter what setting I have it on.

            I’d just as soon not induce a fault either, since the truck’s near new and showing off ain’t that important.

      • 0 avatar
        SC5door

        Lets correct some things here:

        ESC and TCS can be disabled completely when the truck is in 4 LOW, but “limited slip” stays active which is computer controlled. Power is no longer cut with wheels spinning but the software still try and do a “limited slip” type of action using the brakes only.

        ESC can be put in “partial off” which just disables the traction control. “Limited slip” remains active. The rest of ESC remains active.

        • 0 avatar
          danio3834

          Yes, you could have brake-lock limited slip going on. This strategy is attempting to regulate both wheels to a common axle speed rather than kill slip completely.

          “Turning down” ESC can only be done with multi-mode ESC like on the Charger et al.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    I have a question/thought:

    I could swear, about two years ago I saw a “regular” looking RAM 1500 with “POWER WAGON” on the side, and later that day I asked what that term meant, since it sounded so 70s. He said something like oh it was a trim level a long time ago.

    So what was the actual most recent time they sold a POWER WAGON?

    • 0 avatar
      PonchoIndian

      2005-2013 or 14.

      The 05-08 (I think) models could be had in double cab and standard cab. I think starting in 2010 you could only buy them as crew cabs. I’d like an 05-08 with a standard cab and 8 foot bed. Super rare though.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        Thanks! So it’s not really a revival, more like a revamp of a nameplate.

        Ebay doesn’t currently have what you seek, just checked lol.

        • 0 avatar
          PonchoIndian

          I guess the 05’s were a revival or some sorts, although the Powerwagon name was sort more or less applied to all Dodge trucks at one point. The 05’s are when they went full Wrangler Rubicon on them and did the locking diffs and swaybar disconnect.

          I’m not really a truck guy but for some reason these things, or I should say, the ones without the graphics and in the smaller body, do it for me.

  • avatar
    AJ

    That is sweet. That would make a great expedition truck with a pop-up camper shell on the back (minus the Ram box).

    • 0 avatar
      thelaine

      Agreed AJ. This is a great truck for the mountains. Camping, hunting and fishing. Cylinder deactivation is a good feature too. I will be interested in the price of the Tradesman version. Other than the horrible stickers, this looks like teally nice setup.

  • avatar
    Beerboy12

    Best it come with a winch… there’s not a lot of road legal vehicles that can help recover this truck when it gets stuck. Shock upgrades, decent tires and those coil springs will help but it’s a heavy beast and it will get stuck.
    And, yes, I would take this over a Raptor.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    “Dodge is set to revive the Power Wagon as a high end heavy-duty truck option for Ram buyers.”

    Heavy Duty? Can it carry a 1 500lb load in the bed?

    It’s a toy, what else can it be.

    How good is this off road? It to large.

    What about FE? Maybe a diesel would make this into a much better off road vehicle, with a decent suspension that can carry at least 2 500lbs.

    We have the coil sprung Nissan Patrol one tone ute here with coils. It’s a far superior off roader than this.


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