Ram 3500 vs 4500

Discussion in 'Expediter and Hot Shot Trucking Forum' started by Tonytruck98, Dec 28, 2021.

  1. Tonytruck98

    Tonytruck98 Bobtail Member

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    Hello, I’ve tried to read everything I can find out there about the pros and cons of both. I’ve found the better brains seem to be on this forum. :)

    I am financing a truck and trailer setup and having a driver run this rig for me. He will be running under my authority and will have a class A CDL. I have the trailer figured out. 40 ft hydraulic dove tail with twin #15,000 axles and a #30,000 rated gooseneck.

    I’m not going to try and compete with my fellow flatbed guys but I also don’t want to pigeonhole myself into having to stay under 26,000lbs. My dilemma is on the power unit itself. Ram 3500 or 4500. I can find both new for the same price. I will go with the 4.10 axle and the aesin transmission in either one. From what Ive read…

    3500= Smoother ride, better MPG and a little more HP. I’ve also read that the non de rated engine in the 3500 may not help longevity. Lighter frame here and smaller brakes, rims and tires. Everyone seems to be running these trucks though. I have to sift through a few more of the 3500 models to find the aisen transmission and 4.10 axle.

    4500= A little rougher ride. A little less fuel mileage (from what I’ve read) a de rated engine that may add a little extra life but lower MPG. Bigger brakes, rims and tires as well as a stronger frame. All of the 4500 models also come with the aisen transmission 4.10 or 4.44 and without a box which is fine because I will be adding a CM bed with the added fuel capacity. I’ve read the 4.44 axle is something I might want to stay away from because it takes a much lower highway speed to get the better MPG’s.

    This, of course is all from what I’ve learned from reading here and from other forums. I have not driven or pulled with either one personally and no dealers in my area have any on the lots for me to do so with at this time.

    The 3500 has the 4500 beat by a hair on the towing capacities unless I am reading something wrong… If anyone has had to make the choice or has any insight I’d surely appreciate any and all thoughts. I’m looking for longevity and safety. I don’t plan on being fully loaded all day every day so what is best in your opinion? THANKS!!

    Here are the numbers for the 2022 RAMS. The page showing the 4500 numbers has the 3500 specs listed above that. The other page is the 4500 numbers

    F3410A8A-3B8C-4115-B5F2-57482D32C427.png E1E0384C-EF80-4E8C-A36F-7779E96D51C8.png The 3500 has the 4500 beat by a hair on the towing capacities unless I am reading something wrong… If anyone has had to make the choice or has any insight I’d surely appreciate any and all thoughts. I’m looking for longevity and safety. I don’t plan on being fully loaded all day every day so what is best in your opinion? THANKS!!
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2021
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  3. singlescrewshaker

    singlescrewshaker Road Train Member

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    4500 all the way

    You'll appreciate the
    bigger brakes
    12000 rear axle capacity
    larger ring gear
    19.5 commercial tires
    Stiffer rear leafs (when loaded lol)

    It's a work truck thats gonna rack up miles, get the stouter one.

    Personally now that only auto trans is available, I'd get the 4.44 rear, but I'm a 65-68mph cruiser & like the way the little Cummins pulls swinging about 2k rpm..

    I ran a 3500 5yrs & wished I'd of went with 4500
     
  4. truckdriver31

    truckdriver31 Road Train Member

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    why not a old beer or coke truck
     
    singlescrewshaker Thanks this.
  5. Tonytruck98

    Tonytruck98 Bobtail Member

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    Truckdriver31

    I can’t find those on autotrader! Haha. That would be a good setup I suppose.

    Singlescrewshaker

    Thats my instinct as well. Go heavy and make sure you have all you need. Really looking to see why everyone seems to run the 3500?
     
  6. 07shaker

    07shaker Light Load Member

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    I would also recommend a single axle full size truck. Something with air ride and air brakes. Get one with a smaller engine like a M11 or something in that range. Fuel cost will be similar and you’ll have a truck that will last a lot longer than a pickup
     
  7. Tonytruck98

    Tonytruck98 Bobtail Member

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    SINGLESCREWSHAKER

    I things my guy would prefer that 68mph 2k hum as well. He’s a very safe driver and isn’t one to be looking to be Mr. speedy loaded. His slow driving has annoyed me for 20 plus yrs. :)
     
  8. Tonytruck98

    Tonytruck98 Bobtail Member

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    07SHAKER.

    Ive read many, many people agree with that opinion 07shaker. I’ve read that all over and it is a very good idea. I certainly can look in that direction. The only problem is his sleeping quarters. We plan to make him a comfy (as comfy as can be in a crew cab) sleeping space in the pickup cab. That’s the hang up there.
     
  9. Tonytruck98

    Tonytruck98 Bobtail Member

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    I know there are single axle sleepers out there but my guy would prefer a pickup is another reason. As hard as it is to find a reliable person as he I’m ok with sticking with the pickup.
     
  10. singlescrewshaker

    singlescrewshaker Road Train Member

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    10-4

    20210914_124812.jpg


    I originally went with a 3500 because it was also my only vehicle at the time I started. That's really the only reason I can think of why I did not get the 4500..

    Then to a single screw with Detroit. That was the best $8k ever spent. Old girl just run & run.. Kinda wish I'd of bypassed a pickup altogether..

    But if that's what you guy wants, a happy driver will hopefully be a good hand right..?
     
    Coffey, Hulld, clausland and 3 others Thank this.
  11. 24kHotshot

    24kHotshot Heavy Load Member

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    Ran a 3500 chassis for 2 years and 155,000 miles hauling 3-4 cars (registered for 38k lbs gcvwr, rarely loaded heavier than 34k) and I wouldn't do it again.
    Stock tires last only 40,000 miles. Brakes are horrible when hauling heavy. Cab is way too small to be comfortable otr. When its pouring rain outside and you want to get to your sleeper you will have to get out of the truck to get into the "sleeper". I ended up upgrading to 19.5" wheels that last 100k miles. Couldn't find brake upgrades. Added air bags to drive axle (didn't help the ride much). If you have to get a pickup just skip the 4500 and get the 5500. You rather be overbuilt. I'd personally get a long wheelbase single cab and have a proper sleeper and APU built onto the truck if I had to do it again. If you idle the new trucks too long you will pay dearly for DEF repairs.

    An m2 106/112 extended cab with a small sleeper would be ideal if you are trying to stay small. Similar price, bigger engine, tires, brakes and a chassis built to handle 30k trailer all day long. Also you have Freightliner dealers everywhere when/if you break down. MPG difference is negligible when paired with longevity.

    A full size single axle sleeper semi would also give you the option to run some power only loads which can keep you running if your trailer breaks down. Full size sleeper is priceless for comfort (I would commit suicide rather than do a 34 in my ram lol) and a million mile engine that can be repaired anywhere along your route. 30k load is a walk in the park for these trucks and big air brakes are phenomenal. Upkeep is more expensive but doesn't have to be done as often as a ram. My ram was in for maintenance every 10k and when repairs where needed parts where not easy to find.

    I can go on for days on this subject. In the long run the semi will cost you less and be better in every way possible.
     
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