2016 RAM 1500

Research, photos, specs, and expertise

Ram 1500 highlights

Customer rating


  • Exclusive coil-spring rear suspension provides a smooth ride
  • Upscale interior and good refinement with all engine choices


  • There's a bewildering choice of 11 trim levels, before you start picking options
  • Coil-spring rear suspension affects towing capacity

Mileage (EPA estimate)

13 city, 19 highway, 15 combined

Pricing for current inventory

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2016 RAM 1500 is a top choice for a light-duty truck

That the 2016 RAM 1500 remains a firm favorite as a full-size light-duty pickup underlines just how right the RAM 1500 got it when it was introduced in 2009. Continual improvements have, of course, helped maintain its position as a top pick, as have its smooth driving characteristics and array of choices. The 2016 RAM 1500 range has no less than 11 trim levels, starting with the entry-level Tradesman, unsurprisingly designed as a working tool, and extending to the Laramie, Laramie Longhorn, and Limited models, which bring near premium SUV levels of features as well as excellent road manners. If you want to venture off pavement, the Ram 1500 can be had in four-wheel drive, while the Rebel 1500 trim boosts its off-road capability.

The RAM 1500 really offers something for everyone. A variety of cab and cargo bed lengths let you pick between payload capacity or passenger space, or a mixture of both. The base 3.6-liter V6 won't suit those who need to tow, but it's quick and quiet, as is the diesel V6 above it. It is similarly refined and comes with the benefit of the highest EPA-estimated fuel economy in the lineup. For many people, only a V8 will do, and the 5.7-liter engine that tops the line is quick and capable. All Ram 1500s drive with a sophistication that's uncommon among full-size light-duty pickups, while the quality of the fit and finish and materials are similarly impressive.

All Ram 1500 years

What is new for the 2016 Ram 1500?

  • 1500 trims have been upgraded with Quad Seats, Flex Fuel Vehicle, and Alpine Sound System as standard equipment this year.
  • The Rebel trim now comes with Adjustable Suspension and Satellite Radio Ready as standard equipment.
  • The Laramie Longhorn trim now comes with Rear Defroster as standard equipment.
  • The Outdoorsman trim now comes with Power Seat(s) as standard equipment.
  • The SLT trim now comes with Turbo Diesel Engine as standard equipment.
  • The Sport trim now comes with Leatherette & Cloth as standard equipment.
  • The Lonestar trim now comes with Rear View Camera, Parking Sensors, Remote Start, and Turbo Diesel Engine as standard equipment.
  • The SSV trim now comes with Power Seat(s), Cruise Control, Overhead Airbags, Rear View Camera, Side Airbags, and Tow Hitch as standard equipment.
  • The Bighorn trim now comes with Rear View Camera, Parking Sensors, Remote Start, and Turbo Diesel Engine as standard equipment.
  • The HFE Tradesman trim now comes with Running Boards, 20 Inch Plus Wheels, Alloy Wheels, and Turbo Diesel Engine as standard equipment.
  • The Laramie Limited trim now comes with Smart Key as standard equipment.

2016 Ram 1500 trims

Curious how Ram 1500 trims differ? Use our side-by-side vehicle comparison to see the differences and similarities
  • Tradesman: Includes active grille shutters, 17-inch steel wheels, automatic headlights, cruise control, a Class IV receiver hitch, and more.

  • Express: Comes with 20-inch aluminum wheels, carpeted floors and floor mats, and body-color bumpers and grille.

  • HFE (High Fuel Economy): Includes 17-inch aluminum wheels, cloth upholstery, aerodynamically designed side steps, and more.

  • SLT: Adds heated mirrors, remote keyless entry, chrome exterior trim, dual glove boxes, five-inch touchscreen, and Bluetooth® connectivity.

  • Big Horn: Comes with a 10-way power-adjustable driver's seat, leather-wrapped steering wheel, 115-volt power outlet, and more.

  • Sport: Adds projector headlights with LED accents, 20-inch wheels, LED interior lighting, power-adjustable pedals, and an 8.4-inch touchscreen infotainment system.

  • Laramie: Includes leather upholstery, dual-zone climate control, heated steering wheel, driver memory settings, ventilated front seats, and more.

  • Laramie Longhorn: Adds LED bed lighting, front and rear parking sensors, leather-trimmed rear seats, and navigation system.

  • Limited: Adds a self-leveling air suspension, heated rear seats, leather upholstery, automatic windshield wipers, and more.

  • Outdoorsman: Adds 17-inch wheels, underbody skid plates, tow hooks, heavy-duty shock absorbers, front bucket seats, and more.

  • Rebel: Includes black fender flares, LED fog lights, heated front seats, front and rear Bilstein® shock absorbers, and more.

5 reasons to buy the 2016 Ram 1500

1. Different cab styles

2016 RAM 1500: Front Seats | CarMax

The 2016 RAM 1500 comes in three different cab styles, so you can choose one that suits your needs and preferences without sacrificing your priorities. Choose between a Regular Cab, Quad Cab, or Crew Cab style. The Regular Cab has either a six-foot-four or an eight-foot bed and can seat three, while the Quad Cab comes with a six-foot-four bed and has room for up to six people. The Crew Cab has a five-foot-seven or six-foot-four bed.

2. Towing capacity

2016 RAM 1500: Exterior Rear View | CarMax

One of the greatest advantages of owning a full-size pickup is being able to tow massive hauls, and the 2016 RAM 1500 doesn't disappoint in this regard. Models powered by the 3.6L V6 engine can tow an estimated 7,610 lbs., while the turbodiesel V6 has an estimated 9,210-lb. towing capacity (both when properly equipped).

The most powerful engine—the 395-hp 5.7L V8—tops out at an estimated towing capacity of 10,640 lbs. when properly equipped.
With this kind of towing power, you can easily use the 2016 RAM 1500 to bring along a trailer, a fishing boat, an ATV, or jet skis.

3. Lots of cargo space

2016 RAM 1500: Interior Console | CarMax

The 2016 RAM 1500 really delivers when it comes to carrying cargo. It has numerous storage options inside the cabin, and a high payload capacity—an estimated 1,890 lbs. The cabin is equipped with large center console bins as well as door pockets. The Crew Cab model comes standard with a rear seat that has a bottom cushion you can raise to flip down a platform and create additional space for transporting cargo. Additionally, built-in storage compartments located in the cargo box walls are available with the six-foot-four and five-foot-seven beds, offering room for various small items for everyday use.

4. Powerful engine lineup

2016 RAM 1500: 5.7L V8 | CarMax

Power and performance are among the strong suits of the 2016 RAM 1500. This pickup has a choice of three powertrain options, all of which can deliver strong performance. The base engine is a 3.6L gasoline V6 paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission, generating 305 hp and 269 lb-ft of torque. A turbocharged 3.0L diesel V6 with 240 hp and 420 lb-ft of torque is available on the Express, Tradesman, HFE, SLT, Big Horn, Outdoorsman, Laramie, and Rebel trims, while a 5.7L V8 with 395 hp and 410 lb-ft of torque is standard on Sport, Laramie Longhorn, and Limited trims, and optional on other trims.

5. Off-road capability

2016 RAM 1500: Exterior Front View | CarMax

Thanks to a series of standard and optional features, the 2016 RAM 1500 is a capable off-road vehicle—especially if you opt for one of the models that are specifically configured with off-road driving in mind: the Outdoorsman and Rebel. The Outdoorsman comes standard with four-wheel drive, heavy-duty rear shock absorbers, 17-inch wheels, and underbody skid plates, among other useful features. The Rebel is equipped with skid plates, tow hooks, and an air suspension system that allows you to switch between different ride heights. Both trims are available with optional coil-spring rear suspension, which helps make moving on rough road surfaces much more comfortable.

Similar vehicles

If you're interested in the 2016 Ram 1500, you should also check out these similar vehicles from Previous generation years.

Image of GMC Sierra 1500 | CarMax

The GMC Sierra 1500 is a full-size pickup that comes with high towing capacity and a refined, quiet cabin. 2017-2021 models boast an estimated towing capacity of 12,500 lbs. on trims with the 6.2L V8 engine and 2WD, when properly equipped.

The 2017-2021 GMC Sierra 1500 is available in four trims.

Standard features on the 2017-2021 GMC Sierra 1500 include:

  • IntelliLink® infotainment system with a seven-inch touchscreen

  • Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto connectivity

  • Teen-driver monitoring system

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Ratings & reliability

Customer ratings

The 2016 Ram 1500 is a truck that has been well-received by customers. Customers like the power of the 5.7L Hemi engine, the comfort and handling, and say it's easy to drive. The interior has a nice touch to it with the red and black colors throughout.
Above Average

RepairPal gave the Ram 1500 an overall reliability rating of 3.5 out of 5 stars, which RepairPal describes as Above Average. This rating ranks Ram 1500 3rd out of 19 among Fullsize Trucks.

View RepairPal's full rating of the Ram 1500

Ram 1500 features and specs

Bighorn 2WD 2D Regular Cab

Standard Features

  • 20 Inch Plus Wheels
  • ABS Brakes
  • Air Conditioning
  • Alloy Wheels
  • AM/FM Stereo
  • Automatic Transmission
  • Auxiliary Audio Input
  • Bluetooth Technology
  • Cloth Seats
  • Cruise Control
  • Flex Fuel Vehicle
  • Overhead Airbags
  • Power Locks
  • Power Mirrors
  • Power Seat(s)
  • Power Windows
  • Rear View Camera
  • Remote Start
  • Satellite Radio Ready
  • Side Airbags
  • Tow Hitch
  • Traction Control
  • Turbo Diesel Engine
  • 20 Inch Plus Wheels
  • Adjustable Suspension
  • Alpine Sound System
  • Bed Cover
  • Bed Liner
  • Bluetooth Technology
  • CD Audio
  • Front Seat Heaters
  • Heated Steering Wheel
  • Long Bed
  • Navigation System
  • RamBox
  • Rear Defroster
  • Rear View Camera
  • Running Boards
  • Tow Hitch

Drive Wheels

Rear Wheel Drive (2WD)

Engine size




Torque (ft-lbs)


Engine type

Turbo Diesel

Fuel capacity




Overall length






Leg room

F 41"

Head room

F 39.9"

Front tires


Rear tires


Seating capacity


Max towing capacity

482/4820 lbs.



2016 Ram 1500 FAQ

More about the 2016 Ram 1500

Color options

2016 RAM 1500: Color Options | CarMax

Exterior colors:

  • Agriculture Red

  • Black Clearcoat

  • Black Forest Green Pearlcoat

  • Blue Streak Pearlcoat

  • Bright Green

  • Bright Red

  • Bright Silver Metallic Clearcoat

  • Bright White Clearcoat

  • Brilliant Black Crystal Pearlcoat

  • Construction Yellow

  • Dark Brown

  • Delmonico Red Pearlcoat

  • Detonator Yellow Clearcoat

  • Flame Red Clearcoat

  • Granite Crystal Metallic Clearcoat

  • Hills Green

  • Holland Blue

  • Light Cream

  • Light Green

  • Luxury Brown Pearlcoat

  • Maximum Steel Metallic Clearcoat

  • Midnight Blue Pearlcoat

  • National Safety Yellow

  • Omaha Orange

  • Power Tan

  • Robin Egg Blue

  • School Bus Yellow

  • Timberline Green Pearlcoat

  • Tree Green

  • True Blue Pearlcoat

  • Yellow

Interior color:

  • Diesel Gray/Black

Interior details

The 2016 RAM 1500 has a refined and upscale cabin that's lined with plush materials and stylish details. It comes standard with vinyl upholstery, with wood trim and premium leather upholstery available on higher trims. There's a rotary shift knob on the dashboard, which might seem a bit odd to some drivers, but can be quite convenient.

Child seat details

2016 RAM 1500 models that come with back seats—the Quad Cab and the Crew Crab—are fitted with two full sets of LATCH connectors in the rear outboard seats. An upper tether anchor can be found in the middle seat. You can easily install a rear-facing convertible and an infant seat, as well as a booster car seat.


The 2016 RAM 1500 has three engine options: a 305-hp 3.6L gasoline V6 with an eight-speed automatic transmission, a turbocharged 3.0L diesel V6 with 240 hp, and a 5.7L V8 generating 395 hp. It has a top speed of 118 mph, and its zero-to-60 mph times range from 6.6 to 9.4 seconds, depending on the powertrain (according to the manufacturer, when new). The HFE (high fuel economy) trim with the 3.6L V6 gasoline engine and 2WD gets an EPA-estimated 21 mpg combined.

Year comparisons

2009-2018 RAM 1500 (fourth generation)

The fourth-generation RAM 1500 was introduced for the 2009 model year and ended in 2018. It was built on a completely new platform and was offered with a Single Cab or Quad Cab design. Coil-spring suspension replaced the leaf suspension from the previous generation.

2019-Present RAM 1500 (fifth generation)

The RAM 1500 had another complete redesign for the introduction of the fifth generation, which launched in 2019. It saw a reduction of 225 lbs. in overall weight over the fourth generation, thanks to a new sheet metal technology. It no longer offers a manual transmission, while a new eTorque mild-hybrid system was added to the base 3.6L V6 engine.

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