Review of my new RAM tow vehicle

Submitted: Saturday, Sep 21, 2019 at 12:46
ThreadID: 139086 Views:2016 Replies:4 FollowUps:8
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Well I’ve had this beauty for nearly a year now so thought I should share my experiences after numerous trips towing my van.
https://www.mayfairwestwyalong.com.au/2018-ram-1500-express-review/
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Reply By: Member - 2208mate - Saturday, Sep 21, 2019 at 14:08

Saturday, Sep 21, 2019 at 14:08
A good yarn, hope all goes well for you in the future!
AnswerID: 627778

Follow Up By: cruiser 3 - Sunday, Sep 22, 2019 at 14:23

Sunday, Sep 22, 2019 at 14:23
Thank you 2208 mate
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Reply By: Member - Tony H (touring oz) - Sunday, Sep 22, 2019 at 12:11

Sunday, Sep 22, 2019 at 12:11
I was impressed with the Ram when I went for a test drive......BUT the front end (grill & headlights) stopped me buying one. Sooooooo UGLY
Great to hear your happy with your purchase, as I am with my GMC Sierra 2500HD (same fuel consumption figures also)
Cheers
Insanity doesnt run in my family.... it gallops!

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Follow Up By: cruiser 3 - Sunday, Sep 22, 2019 at 13:05

Sunday, Sep 22, 2019 at 13:05
Hi Tony
Well I can’t knock your choice I would go the 2500 in possibly the Silverado if I had a larger van.
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Reply By: Winner W - Sunday, Sep 22, 2019 at 19:24

Sunday, Sep 22, 2019 at 19:24
Thanx for review. I almost signed for the 1500 in Nov last year but went for a Ranger Wildtrak again. I will see what the 2022 Ranger motor is but I am very very tempted to get a RAM ....
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Follow Up By: cruiser 3 - Sunday, Sep 22, 2019 at 20:55

Sunday, Sep 22, 2019 at 20:55
Your welcome Winner.
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Reply By: Member - abqaiq - Sunday, Sep 22, 2019 at 19:28

Sunday, Sep 22, 2019 at 19:28
Technical Question- I note (from your text) that the Ram is built with left hand drive in the USA and then converted to right hand in Australia. How is that done? Is there a traditional steering shaft before/after conversion or is the steering done electronically via servomotor? The reason I ask is that I have experience with a servomotor type failing in service, completely disabling the vehicle.
AnswerID: 627788

Follow Up By: cruiser 3 - Sunday, Sep 22, 2019 at 21:01

Sunday, Sep 22, 2019 at 21:01
Hi Abqaiq.
Sorry but I am not qualified in the workings of automotive steering boxs so am unable to answer your question.
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Follow Up By: Ron N - Sunday, Sep 22, 2019 at 23:57

Sunday, Sep 22, 2019 at 23:57
Abqaiq - The article link at the bottom of this post, provides the information you seek.
The Australian RAM agent selected by Dodge for the official factory-backed, LHD to RHD conversion, is American Special Vehicles (ASV).

ASV fit a complete, newly-manufactured steering box, to the outboard side of the right-hand chassis rail, replacing the original steering box that is fitted to the left-hand chassis rail.

Local automotive component companies manufacture a complete new dashboard, a new RHD wiring harness, glovebox lid and instrument surrounds, revised seating, and elements for the firewall and floorpan.
New A/C and heating ducts and vents are made by the Korean company KOPLA.

The converted RAM vehicle is tested to ensure it meets all ADR's, including crash-testing and correct airbag operation.

Probably most importantly, the ASV conversion includes a revised front-left suspension strut that provides improved adjustment for toe-in, camber and castor angle, that refines the RAM's straight line driving and cornering ability, when converted to RHD.

One of the problems with many of the previous LHD-to-RHD conversions was that the LHD front end setup was left basically unchanged.
But LHD vehicles are set up for driving on the RH side of the road, where the road camber (or crossfall) slopes to the right.

But in Australia, our road camber slopes to the left, and this means that a vehicle set up for RHS-of-the-road driving does not steer or corner correctly, due to the steering construction geometry being incorrect.
The effect is subtle, but it can become very obvious in some driving situations and conditions.

ASV are to be congratulated on doing their RHD RAM conversions properly and completely - even to changing the wiper arm positioning to wipe correctly for RHD.

However, that conversion comes at a cost, as the selling price of the RAM reflects.

RAM conversion done right

Be aware, however, that there are other small-scale companies carrying out LHD-to-RHD conversions (on RAM's, as well as other vehicles) - which DO NOT carry out a full RH steering box installation as part of the conversion.

These companies carry out what is known as a Cross-Shaft-Conversion (CSC), utilising small gearboxes and a cross-shaft, to transfer the steering movement to the steering box still mounted in its original position on the LHS.

Naturally, this a cheap, shortcut method to change from LHD to RHD, and it eventually incurs more play in the steering mechanism, once it starts to wear.

The American Car Co in Brisbane is one of the smaller conversion companies that actually carries out a full RH steering box conversion - and it warns buyers on its website, of the hidden dangers of the cheaper CSC conversions.

Beware of CSC conversions

Cheers, Ron.
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Follow Up By: cruiser 3 - Monday, Sep 23, 2019 at 07:45

Monday, Sep 23, 2019 at 07:45
Hi Ron
Thank you for providing a lot more detail for our readers, much more technical detail than I knew.
Regards Cruiser
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Follow Up By: swampy - Tuesday, Sep 24, 2019 at 14:06

Tuesday, Sep 24, 2019 at 14:06
hi
Surely some of these USA utes are made RHD somewhere in the world . But hey its your money if u want to spend it on a rhd conversion . A factory produced rhd vehicle is always cheaper .
Some of the base model utes cannot be done because of the conversion cost doubles the vehicle cost !! Conversion places are outa touch .
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Follow Up By: OzzieCruiser - Tuesday, Sep 24, 2019 at 16:02

Tuesday, Sep 24, 2019 at 16:02
No they are not made in RHD anywhere in the world. And you are not buying a LHD vehicle and getting it converted yourself - you are buying a new RHD vehicle where work is done by Chrysler but through a contracted company - just as GM used HSV to do their big RHD utes.

So the buyer of these vehicles is buying a brand new RHD vehicle.
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FollowupID: 902045

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