Edmunds Answers



  • zaken1 07/04/11 12:31 am PST

    I used the specs on a 2011 Dodge Ram 1500 2WD, with a 5.7 Hemi for this evaluation; so the specs are probably at least as high as your 2003 model.

    The Ram 1500 models just do not have enough load capacity to tow 7000 lbs; regardless of cab style or bed length. The Ram 1500 has a curb weight of approximately 5,000 pounds. This truck is rated at a towing capacity of between 9050 and 10,200 pounds; depending on bed length. The towing capacity includes the GVW of the truck and trailer. So there is about 5,000 pounds beyond the truck's curb weight available to tow in the Ram 1500. You said you would probably not exceed 7,000 pounds GVW in the trailer. 5000 plus 7000 pounds is 12000 pounds. This would be one ton over the truck's maximum rated towing capacity.

    A 5.7 hemi powered Ram 2500 has a towing capacity of about 15,000-15,500 pounds; along with a curb weight of 5600-6100 pounds. So it could tow a 7000 pound trailer with room to spare.

    I'm sorry that it turned out this way; but I believe it would be dangerous to tow this trailer with a truck that is loaded a ton over its rated weight limit.

    In view of the extremely high gearing; I would not use overdrive when pulling a load this heavy, even on flat ground. 2500 RPM is the lowest engine speed I'd want to see at freeway speeds.

  • knowledgepower 07/04/11 8:29 am PST

    Always keep the overdrive turned off when towing, it disengages the passing gear on an automatic transmission. I sold Dodge Rams for many years and I can tell you that a GVW of 7840 on your 27 ft trailer does qualify for towing. You do need a heavy duty service group which is a transmission and oil cooler, that's where the term properly equipped comes into play. On paper it does meet the specs for towing, 10% of the GVW does not exceed the tongue weight of the Ram truck so again on paper it does not exceed the capacity. You do have to add the number of occupants and consider each at 200 lbs and everything that goes in the trailer which also reduces tow capacity. This is not a contradiction of what zaken1 advised you to do but I am adding to it for you to do a little more research. I would go back to the RV dealer and have them spec out your truck with the toy hauler to see if it is within specs for towing, just saying to you it'll work won't work.

  • MrShift@Edmunds 07/04/11 10:48 am PST

    You're cutting it close with this truck but you are within limits if you stick to no more than about 7500 for trailer and contents, and all the cargo in your truck. Your truck probably wont' even allow you to stay in overdrive--it'll be shifting down all the time---but don't tow in overdrive.

  • fastmonza 12/20/11 11:49 pm PST

    I can answer this. I have a 2003 Ram 1500 Sport with the 5.7 hemi. I tow a 24 foot Pace V nose car hauler in Florida where the terrain is flat. Total weight around 6600 LBS. The truck tows it with no problem but forget using overdrive, not going to happen. Make sure your trailer is balanced with about 12 percent on the tongue because you WILL have sway, especially when being passed by big semi's. I average around 11.5 mpg once I get on the interstate but the terrain here is flat. Going over the Skyway bridge I have to downshift to second gear, otherwise the truck will stay in drive.

  • fastmonza 12/20/11 11:51 pm PST

    I did forget to mention I have the 3.92 axle ratio.


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