2020 Ford Tremor vs. Ram Power Wagon Off-Road Drag Race! Who’s Got the Best Off-Road HD Truck?
2020 Ford Tremor vs. Ram Power Wagon Off-Road Drag Race! Who’s Got the Best Off-Road HD Truck?
[MUSIC PLAYING] TRAVIS LANGNESS: If you want the most capable heavy duty offroad pickup trucks, it’s going to be one of these two. The Ford Super Duty with the trimmer package or the RAM Power Wagon. [IMITATES GUITAR]
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: Now, besides their rough and tumble names, in this video, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about both pickups and which one is right for your needs.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: As always, like, comment, subscribe. And for more information, click the links below to visit Edmunds and find your perfect truck, SUV, or car.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: Have 35 inch tires ever looked so small? That seems like an insane thing to say about a factory truck, but such as the power of Tremor, an outlandish pickup truck, no matter how you look at it. $4,000 get you the Tremor package on an F-250 or F-350 on any trim, from an XLT all the way up to this Platinum.
And these things are decked out. Off the lot, you get a two inch front lift, bigger shocks, and there’s a lot of window dressing on this truck, and we can argue all day about offroad capabilities. But the thing that should really worry RAM is the 35 inch tires and the upgraded 7.3 liter V8 engine standard.
Of course, this particular truck comes with the crown jewel, a 6.7 liter turbo diesel V8 engine, making 475 horsepower and 1,050 pound feet of torque. Let me say that again, 1,050 pound feet of torque. Now, you have a lot more choice in the Tremor than you do in the Power Wagon, but you need to know that it comes at a steep cost.
The diesel engine alone is a $10,000 option, and this particular truck goes for 87 grand. $87,000 for a pickup truck. We need to know if it lives up to that lofty listing.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: The Power Wagon is a little bit different. You can only get it with a 6.4 liter V8. No diesel here. RAM says it’s too heavy and it won’t fit with the front winch. Never mind that on the Ford, you can get that winch with either a 7.3 liter V8 or their diesel, but it is optional. It’s standard on the RAM. It’ll cost you three grand with the Tremor.
Some other offroad goodies you get with the Power Wagon include the front and rear locking differentials and a front disconnecting stabilizer bar. There’s also the usual skid plates for the transfer case in the fuel tank, as well as 33 inch tires on 17 inch wheels. Now, the least expensive Power Wagon you can get, the base one, is around $55,000, unless you start digging into the order guide.
And you can see that you can get a Tradesman, equip the Power Wagon package, and you’ve got a truck that’s closer to $50,000. The cheapest version of the Tremor you can get is $53,000. Now, with all that said, this truck does bump right up against $70,000 the way it’s equipped, but that’s still nearly 20 grand less than that Super Duty.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: But how much torque does it have?
TRAVIS LANGNESS: Not as much. No one cares about torque. We’re going to talk about transfer cases later.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: This Platinum trim really shows the full potential of the Super Duty interior. You’ve got big, wide, cushy leather seats that are heated, cooled, and have a massage function. And then there are doodads everywhere. There’s a smartphone charging station, trailer backup assist, trailer gain, transfer case, lane keep assist, tons of camera angles, and, oh yeah, a power sunroof.
And then everything’s power adjustable too, from the steering wheel, to the pedals, and the mirrors. This is a digital truck paradise, but it may be a bit disconcerting if you’re more of an analog person. There are a few areas for improvement.
It lacks a lot of the interesting storage solutions and cubbies that the RAM has in abundance. But did somebody say floor storage? In total, though, the tech-heavy Tremor is really flashy and exciting, but it feels like the RAM got the basics right. That truck is just a little more approachable and easy to live with.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: The RAM 2500 is a class leader for a lot of reasons. One of those is the interior quality. But before we go inside, I want to show you a feature that I would absolutely get if I were buying this truck with my money, and that is the RAM Box.
Essentially, it’s a couple trunks on either side of the bed that you can fit all kinds of items in. Stuff like tow ball hitches, tow straps, tow hitches, inflator kits, and there’s even a charge port for when you’re on the go. RAM Box.
There’s a $17,000 price gap between these two trucks, but that doesn’t mean this RAM is lacking in the interior department. It’s got great materials, and it’s got stuff like heated and ventilated seats, heated seats in the rear, plenty of power ports and USB ports to plug into. And one of my favorite features is this 12 inch touchscreen.
It’s one of the best in the business, not just in full size or heavy duty trucks. It’s super crisp and it looks great on this dash. Plus, there’s lots of great storage cubbies for you to put stuff in, plenty of cup holders, places for your smartphone. I bet Ryan’s jealous of that.
And there’s even a spot under the center seat we can store your laptop. Now, the only drawback, really, with the RAM’s interior is the steering wheel. It tilts, but it doesn’t telescope. So finding an ideal driving position might be tough.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: Enough of all that. It’s time to put these trucks on equal ground. So we’re going to hit the trail. I’m especially eager, of course, to check out this 1,050 pound feet of torque and see how it does out there.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: Front rear locking diffs, smart storage solutions, 12 inch screen.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: 1,050 pound feet of torque.
So when things get bumpy, here’s what the Fort has to offer. The Tremor gets a custom front bumper compared with other Super Duties. That gives it a really good approach angle. In fact, it’s better than the Power Wagon’s back there. But this truck is long. It’s 11 inches longer than the RAM in total.
We’re more concerned about the Tremor on some of these trails than we are about the Power Wagon. And frankly, making it through some of them safely could be a challenge. But let’s see how it handles a decline like this. Approach is no issue. We should hit level ground here pretty soon. But as we get towards the back, not sure. Nope, it’s fine.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: There are a lot of differences between these trucks, but one of the things that sets the RAM apart from the Ford is the fact that it’s got a disconnecting front stabilizer bar. So when you disconnect that stabilizer, or sway, or anti roll bar, whatever you want to call it, what happens is it allows for more offroad articulation, so I can get over bigger obstacles without losing traction in one of my tires, and traction is our friend.
The other big difference up front is the locking front differential. Ford’s got a limited slip, which is good. But this one is a full walker, front and rear. And when you have a walking differential, what it does is it ties the two wheels together, so essentially they spin as one. That’s also good for off roading, because you want to make sure you have traction even if you do eventually exceed the ability of your articulation and pop that wheel up off the ground.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: Here’s an area where the Power Wagon will definitely be better suited, but I think the Tremor can handle it pretty well. It’s got these big tires, but we are pretty high up. Let me get on the truck info page. Oh, we are rocking for sure. We’re totally rocking.
The truck is rocking back and forth. I think we’ve got at least one wheel off. Yeah, we’re at 16 degrees right now according to the offroad gauge. And that works pretty well. One small bump and we’re out of there.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: So if one wheel has to go higher than the other, what you have here is the effect of articulation not being enough. And now I’m spinning the tire, and I’m bouncing around a little bit. I can feel my right rear tire is off the ground.
So I’m going to back up and engage my sway bar disconnect. Disengage my sway bar, whatever. Do the same thing. Sway bar disconnected. Back up the hill I go. And I am going much further. Now, I don’t have the lockers engaged yet. But if I did, I could probably make it over this weird sideways hill I’m on. It’s pretty rad.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: Since we have this super scientific test setup, I’m going to take a very measured, proper approach. Hey, guys, how does that look? I think I got a wheel up.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: So even though there’s not a fully disconnected wheel front sway bar in the Tremor like there is in the RAM, that thinner version that they’ve equipped here works pretty well and will get you through some hairy stuff. Oh, man. There’s that articulation at work. Here’s the thing about turning these HD trucks around on a trail. It’s like trying to turn a yacht around in a swimming pool. These things are huge.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: Surround view camera test. Whew. I love that you get a ton of different camera views. So everything comes with a camera now. But if you only have one view or a pretty limited scope, then in situations like this, it doesn’t really help that much. But I’ve got a ton of different views. I can see every angle. It just might take a couple of turns, but you’re out of the sticky situation pretty quickly.
So while may not match the figures that the RAM has, the Tremor can do some pretty impressive off roading. You’re just going to have a bumpy ride. That’s one of the trade offs you get here for the increased towing capacity. The Ford stuck with more traditional leaf springs in the back compared with the RAM’s coil springs.
And the reason they did that is leaf springs are extremely strong and durable. So if you’re going for something like a maximum towing capacity rating, like Ford was, that’s what you want to go with. The beauty of it is, if you want more strength or more towing capability, you just throw more bars in there.
And that’s one of the reasons you would pay an extra $10,000 for this diesel engine, because it comes with the high capacity trailer tow package. It’s great for feeling confident when you’ve got a huge weight behind you. But with unladen bed and nothing on the hitch, in this bumpy stuff, you’re going to feel some jitters.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: If you were in a bouncy castle and you got dropped from, like, a helicopter onto a trampoline, that’s what it feels like when you’re going over bumps in this thing. It’s hilarious. Like, you don’t feel unsafe. You’re still in a bouncy castle. You’re not going to get hurt. Unless, like, the bully kid at the party pushes you out the door. But no one needs to hear about my life experience.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: But that’s one of the trade offs. And frankly, a lot of people are going to be fine with that, because the Ford is so good at towing. And don’t forget, we have an extra two inches of lift in the front compared with other Super Duties. So as much as we talk about articulation, and departure angles, and all this super technical stuff, the Tremor can go almost everywhere the Power Wagon can go.
It’s really just going to be that really, really small percentage of heavy rock or boulder crawling where this thing is going to get hung up. But don’t feel like you shouldn’t go out on the same trail in a Tremor that you can do in a Power Wagon. It may be a little more uncomfortable, but this truck can handle a lot.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: One of the things that is a preference, really, for me, but I like it much better in the RAM, is this floor shifter. You can just throw it into four high or four low when you get off road, and it kind of pins the old school cool factor. Makes you feel like you’re in a truck. Whereas the Tremor has a button. So I guess technology for the win or something.
Also, this Power Wagon has a better crawl ratio. It is 51 to 1, well Ryan’s diesel Tremor is 44 to 1. Yes, if you get the F-250 with the 7.3 liter V8, that goes up to 53 to 1, so it’s higher. And yes, he has larger tires, 35s. But if you’re comparing the two trucks we have here, I have the better crawl ratio, and that’s what matters.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: But crawl ratios don’t matter when you have 1,050 pound feet of torque. On top of all that grunt we have under the hood, Ford brings a lot of tech to off roading with the Tremor. We’ve got a hill here with a pretty impressive incline, but it’s not super difficult, so this is kind of overkill. But I just want to demonstrate how it works.
All you have to do is push this button up here. That activates it. OK. And then you want to hit the Set button, the same one that you use for cruise control, and it works exactly the same way. And you can move it up in increments of one mile an hour, so you can start really slow. So I’ll just start off with one.
My feet are off the brake and throttle and the truck is moving all by itself. So I can just concentrate on the inputs I’m giving into the steering wheel, and this is actually really slow. So let’s kick it up to two, three. So the incline is getting steeper. We’re now at 15 degrees, 16. I can’t see anything over the hood in front of me.
And we’re at the top and leveling off. There’s another one that we’re going to come up to. We were actually pretty concerned about the break over angle on both of these hills, but it’s not a problem so far. Let’s go back down to two, because this one has a really steep drop.
Here’s the break over part. It’s fine. Again, I’m not on the brakes, and now we’re starting to go down. I’m not on the brakes at all. The truck is doing it itself. We’re at 16 degrees, decline, 18. I’m not touching the brakes. It’s holding itself, two miles an hour set to.
So that’s it. It’s a very easy system to use. And again, just to keep things in perspective, this is a truck that weighs four tons, and this system drove it up that degree of an incline by itself, so I could just focus on the steering, and then brought it back down safely. Pretty cool party trick in your Tremor. Is it cheating? Maybe. But does it get you home safely? Yeah, I think so.
[WALKIE TALKIE BEEPING]
All right then. What’s next?
TRAVIS LANGNESS: Hey, there we go, lockers front and rear. Boom. No limited slip here.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: You’re good. You just need to go slow. You’re going to go over a rock now.
You’re good. You’re good.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: Forward camera, I love this.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: Easy work, man. Clear on your right. Light work, baby.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: Too easy, locking difs, bro.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: More driver, more driver, more driver. OK. Cool. Straighten out.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: Ooh, the beep, beep, beep, the beep, beep, the beep, beep.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: Killing it– that thing was a lot easier– or handled it a lot better than we thought it was going to. I thought it was going to take a lot of weaving around rocks and stuff, but tons of clearance, no issues at all. I feel excited to see what the Tremor’s going to do now. Because that handled that pretty easily. And I don’t know how [LAUGHS] the Tremor’s going to be able to do it the same way or not. I’m going to put it into 4 low. [CLICK] OK. I’m going to [CLICK] lock the rear locker. I’m going to not lock the front locker, because I don’t have a front locker.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: Well, that was easy.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: I know he says it’s easy. But it feels like I’m really close to everything.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: You going to put it in Hill Descent Control?
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: Yes, sir.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: Some guys did it with just their foot.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: Some guys spent $90,000.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: [LAUGHS]
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: 16-degree descent, not touching the brakes.
I think we’re good. Cool.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: He had way more than enough clearance on there, a lot more than I did. Shh.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: Tremor!
One thing that automakers often say when it comes to trucks is, you’ll forget you’re even driving a diesel engine. That is definitely not the case with this 6.7 liter turbo V8.
The sound is very distinctive and so is the way it drives. You are just barely feathering the throttle. Because there’s so much torque at your disposal, you just don’t need very much to get up to speed on the street and even on the highway. But the power delivery is really smooth. It works great in conjunction with the 10-speed transmission, which we haven’t always been huge fans of. But there are several different driving modes.
There’s even an eco mode. And on the way out here, I averaged 21.5 miles per gallon. You’re going to get some jitters on the road. Small cracks and bumps are definitely going to be felt through the cabin. But that’s the trade-off you get for the amount of towing capacity that you have in the Tremor. But if comfort is much of an issue, there’s not a whole lot you can do about it. I would probably just start thinking Power Wagon.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: The Ram’s coil-spring suspension has it lagging behind the Tremor in terms of towing and hauling capability. But there’s a trade-off. And that trade-off is comfort. This is a much more comfortable truck on the highway. It’s less bouncy. And I would rather take it on a road trip. Now, the Tremor can tow about 15,000 pounds. And this Ram can only tow 10,350. But I still think that’s plenty, especially for a truck with all of this off-road capability. That’s why I prefer the Ram. Ryan, after a day in the dirt, what do you think of your truck?
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: I’m pleasantly surprised. I started to get numb to the numbers that I was throwing out– 35-inch tires, 1,050 pound-feet of torque!
TRAVIS LANGNESS: We get it.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: And I started to list all of the things that this truck doesn’t have, the front locker and disconnecting front-sway bar, and I started to think it was going to be at a big disadvantage. But the truth is, it has so much ground clearance. And the technology really does come in handy. It was a blast out here. I had a lot of fun. The problem is the price is offensive to me on a personal level.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: Yeah.
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: This is still a truck built for towing that’s been adapted for off-road use. And if people look at that and say, that’s for me, then they’re absolutely right. And they should get it. But what was your takeaway?
TRAVIS LANGNESS: Look, I was worried about the fact that you had 35s and you have a way higher payload capacity, towing capacity. This truck’s faster in a straight line. But I still prefer the Ram– all of that off-road tech, the front and rear-locking difs, the disconnecting sway bar up front, and that awesome interior, not to mention the fact that I would pay $20,000 less, essentially, for this truck than you would for that one. I mean, I’m the kind of idiot–
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: Yes, you are.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: Hey. OK. Hold on– that would put a camper shell on a truck and go overlanding. I’d love to live out of something like this and just spend six months on the road. But that’s not quite appealing enough for me to increase my monthly payments as much as it would over this. The Ram is still the truck for me. What about you?
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: I hate to say it, but I agree.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: Yes!
RYAN ZUMMALLEN: That’s the one.
TRAVIS LANGNESS: Ram wins! And as always, click the link below to subscribe. And for more information on both of these trucks, go to Edmunds.com and find the perfect truck, SUV, or car for you.
You’ve watched the comparison video, but with this one we need to answer a simple question: Which is quicker off-road, the Ram Power Wagon or the Ford F-250 Tremor? In this video, Travis Langness and Ryan ZumMallen find out and demonstrate in the process just how much power the Ford Super Duty’s turbodiesel has on hand.
2020 Ford Tremor vs. Ram Power Wagon Off-Road Drag Race! Who’s Got the Best Off-Road HD Truck?
Ram Power Wagon vs. Ford F-250 Tremor Off-Road Battle! Review, Price, Specs & More
2021 Ford F-150 Reveal ― New Ford F-150 Redesign, Price, Towing Capacity, Dimensions, Specs & More
2020 Chevy Silverado Review: Silverado Trail Boss Towing Capacity, Engines, Off-Road & More!
How Reliable Is a Dodge Ram 1500 After 35,000 Miles? Long-Term 2019 Ram 1500 Review
Tesla Cybertruck, Rivian R1T, GMC Hummer EV and More: New Electric Trucks to Watch For
2020 Ford F-250 SuperDuty: All the Unexpected Results, New Changes & First Thoughts
Best Midsize Trucks for 2019 & 2020 — Top-Rated Pickup Trucks
2020 GMC Sierra 1500 Diesel Review and First Drive
2020 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel First Drive — Beefed-Up Diesel Power & Towing
2020 Toyota Tacoma TRD Off-Road Drive
2020 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD First Drive
Ford F-150 Raptor and Ram Power Wagon — 2019 Off-Road Truck Review
Jeep Gladiator Rubicon vs. Chevy Colorado ZR2: 2019 Off-Road Truck Comparison Test
2020 Toyota Tacoma First Look | Chicago Auto Show
2019 Ram 2500 Review and First Drive
Ford Ranger vs Toyota Tacoma vs Chevy Colorado: 2019 Truck Comparison Test
2020 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD First Look
2019 Ram 1500: The Best Truck | Edmunds Editors’ Choice
2019 Ram Heavy Duty 2500 and 3500 First Look