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Ram 1500 4x4 3.21 vs 3.92 rear axle ratio

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Looking to purchase a new Ram 1500 4x4 5.7 V8 Hemi.  Max tow rating for the 3.21 rear axle is 8,150 and for the 3.92 is 11,250.  Was wondering if the 3.21 is enough to tow an Elite II?  From what I have read the 3.21 has better fuel mileage.  The 3.21 would have 20” wheels and the 3.92 would have 22”.

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Thanks. I realize the GVWR is less than the max tow rating but didn’t know if it was pushing it too close and if anyone had any experience with this TV.

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Keep in mind that your actual tow weight will be more like 6000lbs so you’ll be well within your limits.  The only thing that might make you want a higher ratio would be if you tow in the mountains a lot. Even then, it will be a matter of ease rather than actual mechanical limits.  There are people here who tow with much more limited vehicles and do fine.

 

The problem with asking advice on tow vehicles in forums is that everyone thinks that the vehicle they currently tow with is just the best. You’ll find those people with more limited vehicles who will say they’re fine and don’t know why you’d want more, and those with beefy ¾ ton diesels who’ll say you’re crazy to tow with less.

 

I say trust the numbers.

 

By the way, the wheel size won’t make a difference but the tire size will, at least for calculating torque. We had a thread here a bit ago about calculating the final pulling capacity for a vehicle - I’ll see if I can dig it up.

 

 

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Snowball • LE2 256 • 2018 Ford Raptor

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When picking a tow vehicle that will be actually used a LOT for towing, always choose the most power, the lowest gearing (highest number axles), and the biggest gas tank. Those three things will make the long long drives way more enjoyable. Everything else is just what appeals to you. If you only plan to tow a few thousand miles a year in easy terrain, and daily drive it the rest of the time, go for the highway gearing and the slightly better fuel economy.

 

Nobody every complains that they bought the towing gears, but often we hear folks wishing they had them.... especially if they have a light duty truck and start sticking oversized tires and lots of heavy accessories on it.

 

John Davies

 

Spokane WA

 

 

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"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

 

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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Nobody every complains that they bought the towing gears, but often we hear folks wishing they had them…. especially if they have a light duty truck and start sticking oversized tires and lots of heavy accessories on it.

I do know of one owner who fits that description.

 

But really I never see anyone complain about not having enough pulling power.  I just see people brag when they have it.  There are limits of course, but as I said, unless you’re right on the edge, it’s mostly a question of ease rather than capability.

 

On the other hand, I see people complain about gas mileage all the time. Personally, I’d trade power for mileage in a heartbeat.

 

A typical trip for us sees 3000 miles on flat interstate and maybe 30 going up a mountain pass. Sure I enjoy the extra power for that 1/100th of my trip, but I’d save more time stopping one less time at a gas station than I’d lose by going slower up a hill.

 

Of course you can buy a diesel and get both power and fuel efficiency but it’ll cost you more on the front end and likely more over the life of the truck. I get why people would want that - just that when someone asks “is it necessary”, the answer is clearly no.

 

The same logic applies to gear ratios. Will a lower ratio pull better? Obviously. Should you get the lower ratio? Maybe - depends. Is the higher ratio enough? Absolutely.


Snowball • LE2 256 • 2018 Ford Raptor

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Well, it depends a whole lot on where you live and how you tow. I normally stick to secondary highways and county roads, and routinely have very steep grades to deal with. Sometimes reaching 18%, steep enough to require first gear both up and down......

 

If you rarely have to deal with roads like that, it definitely makes fuel economy more important than gears. This is one reason it is good for members to add a location to their profile.

 

John Davies

 

Spokane WA

 

 


"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

 

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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[quote . Is the higher ratio enough? Absolutely.

 

To quote Admiral of the Soviet Fleet Gorshkov:

"Better is the enemy of good enough."

 

 

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Either will work fine, and rear ratios end up being academic with some of the newer transmissions out there that have lockup in just about every gear. The problem with a RAM 1500 isn't going to be the rear end ratio, it's going to be the payload. When I looked at one (loaded) it was in the 900lbs range. I'd be more inclined to upgrade to a 6.4 in a 2500 and pickup a ~3000lbs payload instead - even if it means an older cab. Same price, near same size, much more capability.


2019 LE2 #529 expected Sep/Oct 2019


 

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FWIW in the conversation I have the highest gear ratio in my 2013 F150 with 3.5 Eco Boost engine. Our Oliver has been throughout much of the intermountain west with many a steep grade but the duo does just fine and not once has it seemed limited by either power or lack of lower towing gear ratio. In other words I wouldn't worry too much about it, you should be fine.

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The problem with a RAM 1500 isn’t going to be the rear end ratio, it’s going to be the payload.

as with with most 1/2 ton trucks.

For the vast majority - the real issue is upfront cost of the diesel 3/4 ton trucks. Some times its size and daily driver preferences, but honestly, nobody says I have to much HP/Torque, its to solid on the road, tows way to well, and I feel way to fresh after driving 800 miles in a day.

 

Over the many years, I realized the right tool for the job applies to almost everything - my last error - a foray with a ski/fish boat combo was my last attempt at compromise.

 

I hated to replace my trusted 1/2 ton GMC, but it just didn't fill in all the blanks. Payload/power.

I hated to spend the $$ but honestly, the Oliver was also $$$, at some point it just doesn't make sense to anguish over the TV, if marginal, as one runs the risk of diminishing the overall experience of the Oliver - due to a poor TV.

 

23K miles on my 2018 GMC - Duramax - towing the EII, and I have nothing but good experiences in my Oliver travels to date.

Many have great results with less capable TV, and are happy, its a big world out there.

 

And JD, my location has little, if any, tell- on where I take my Ollie. I head west, and to elevation, every time I get the chance, but the flat areas - well they get some attention....

 

 

RB


Cindy,  Russell and  "Harley dog" . Home is our little farm near Winchester TN

2018 Oliver Legacy Elite II - 2018 GMC 2500 Duramax 

"Die young - As late as possible"

ALAZARCACOFLIDMTNVNMOKORTNTXUTWAWYd56201524964bac5483378b34b491562080842sm.jpg

 

 

 

 

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