RAM TRX – Beautifully Insane
There are many reasons someone wants a car. You might want to get from one place to another, you might want to experience high speeds, you might want to haul various merchandise.
Trucks are a big deal in America. They are not only workhorses, but also depict a lifestyle. No wonder that there is a plethora of lift kits, turbo kits, oversized fenders and huge wheels available on the market. People want their truck to make them feel powerful, thus they swap parts and install upgrades.
And then, there’s the 2022 RAM TRX. This is’nt just a sport truck, it’s a supertruck! This beast doesn’t need anything aftermarket to make you hold on to your behinds when it sets in motion. It is big, mean and fast – insanely fast.
The Hellcat Heart
Let’s get straight to the point. No one wants this pickup for the amount of hay bales it can carry, or for how comfortable the seats are. Neither does anyone particularly care about its handsome design. The RAM TRX is fast, and that’s why you want to have it.
Hiding between the bulky fenders and the hood, the 6.2-liter Hellcat V8 is waiting for the throttle to hammer the floor. Right then and there, hell will be unleashed upon the wheels.
This iteration of the Hellcat V8 pushes 702hp and 650 lb-ft of torque to all four wheels via an 8-speed automatic. In part, the power comes thanks to an oversized 2.4-liter supercharger. One wouldn’t think 3.7 second 0-60mph time would be assigned to a hefty full-size truck, but here it is. The RAM TRX dashes off the line and furiously eats tarmac, smashing the quarter mile mark after 12.3 seconds and at 110mph.
Blunt, lifted wide body
It’s no secret that the TRX is not cheap. However, that’s not to say that buyers are not still getting good value for money with all this sport truck offers. The body is 8 inches wider than the regular RAM, mostly to accommodate beefy 35-inch tires. The 12 inches of clearance will pretty much allow the RAM TRX to get over any obstacle. It will also seamlessly drive into 32-inch deep waters.
Still worried there is a chance something might push through the high clearance and hit the truck? Not to worry; there is plenty of underbody armor shielding the reinforced frame from rocks, debris or cattle.
Popping the hood doesn’t reveal the usual sight of the V8 Hellcat engine as we’ve been used to on the Dodge Challenger, Charger and the Durango SRT. Instead, the RAM TRX features a plastic cover, for obvious protection reasons. The cover comes away fairly easily, revealing a beautiful taunt to the truck’s main competitor.
The plastic panel below the cover features an image of a T-Rex eating a Raptor. Got the reference? TRX, T-Rex, potato potato. And the Raptor? Let’s just say that Ford got the hint.
Slamming the hood back down, your eyes are met by the sizeable, hungry air scoop, flanked by equally large vents going up towards the windshield. Both the air scoop and vents serve a functional purpose, feeding the large supercharger.
On the sides, the lifted body reveals heavy duty adjustable Bilstein shocks and beadlock wheels which will keep the tire fixed whenever you need to take out some pressure for better rock climbing.
The bed of the TRX is simple. It doesn’t come out with anything special, maximizing storage space instead of any funky and rather unneeded features. Surprisingly, RAM decided to make the TRX a bit stealth. Apart from a lower-left placed logo on the rear, there aren’t many design cues letting a fellow drivers know that this is not your average RAM.
Hopping inside the cabin
Yes, the RAM TRX is tall enough that most people have to literally hop into the cabin. The narrow rock rails on the sides don’t really double up as running boards. Once inside, the main difference between the regular RAM and the TRX is quite obvious.
Instead of the shift dial on the dashboard, the TRX comes with a shift lever. The place of the dashboard dial is taken by the 4-wheel drive controls and drive modes control and the launch control. Not really a fan of the shift lever? Toggle the paddle shifters behind the steering wheel instead. For the most aggressive shifting, try the Sport or Baja Mode.
Overall, the TRX can be spec’d with a well-appointed interior of which we have become to expect with many full-size modern pickups. While the base model offers cloth upholstery, the TR1 and TR2 trims are what you’ll really want. With these trims the RAM TRX’s cabin is upgraded to soft leather, carbon fiber and suede. Front seats are heated and ventilated, although unfortunately for some, those features are not extended to the rear.
Rear seat passengers are however treated to a generous amount of space, both for their legs and head. There are “oh sh*t handles” on each side to grab when the road is bumpy or the driver decides to put the pedal to the metal. Also, even though there are just three seats in the back row, the RAM TRX generously provides 5 charging ports – 2 USB-C, 2 USB-A and a regular household outlet.
The large vertically mounted 12-inch touchscreen brings every bit of tech you might look for: Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, proprietary navigation, SiriusXM radio and so on. One cool feature is the ability to split the screen between multiple apps. Thus, you can have navigation and Apple CarPlay open and visible at the same time. The existence of physical knobs around the screen will be highly appreciated when dashing through off-road areas.
It drives like a hellhound!
Let’s face it. Nobody is really interested in the RAM TRX for its respectable towing capacity or ability to carry a maintenance crew up to a work site. Everybody wants the TRX because it is obnoxiously fast.
With properly heated tires and launch control, the Dodge RAM TRX can do low 12 second runs at the drag strip. The launch control system allows not only to customize the launch RPM, but also to individually set shift lights for each gear. This feature you’d expect to see on a high-end sports car or supercar, not a full-size pickup truck.
The Hellcat V8 throws amazing low notes out of the exhaust, so there is always a good reason to drop the boot on that go pedal. It could probably beat many wannabe sports cars at the stoplight and leave plenty hot-hatches in the dust, getting the owners to reconsider their choices.
However, the TRX is primarily built for the not-so-welcoming territories where tarmac doesn’t reach. Switch throughout the drive modes and select Baja. The suspension will adjust accordingly and you’re ready to not just go over uneven terrain, but go fast.
Switching between the available 4-wheel drive modes can get the RAM TRX to overcome even the more technical bits of terrain. This is where the bulky tires team up with the high ground clearance and obnoxious amounts of torque to conquer steep rocks and highly uneven surfaces.
The RAM TRX is all fun both on and off the road. However, great power comes great fun, but also abysmal fuel economy. Even if you’re careful not to upset the throttle too much, the TRX can hardly go above 10mpg on the road. Get the Hellcat engine to roar angrily and the fuel economy will quickly dip below 7mpg. Likely no buyers of the TRX are very concerned about mpg, however as the price of fuel continues to climb, some inevitably will be.
Conclusion – The fastest pickup truck out there
If Ford brought the Wrangler to its knees with the Bronco, Chrysler got their payback with the RAM TRX. The bulky, elevated chassis embeds all the key features for a monstrously fast sport truck: a 700hp V8 with a boatload of torque, reinforced chassis with steel plating, long travel adaptable suspension and a launch control button.
There is plenty of tech to fiddle with inside the cabin, sound insulation is above average and you can even equip it with posh leather ventilated seats – in a pickup! Indeed, the mileage won’t impress anyone, unless you’re measuring in smiles per gallon rather than miles per gallon.