Specifications of the 1998 Dodge Ram

by James Rutter
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In 1998, Dodge continued to produce the second generation of its Ram line of trucks, which featured the styling changes and Magnum engines first introduced in 1994. Dodge offered buyers three models of Ram trucks in 1998: the half-ton 1500, the three-quarter ton 2500 and the one-ton 3500. The 1998 Ram with the "Quad Cab" option marked the first appearance of a four-door pickup truck.

Drive Train

Prospective buyers could choose from a number of engine options for the 1998 Dodge Ram. Dodge offered the standard 1998 Ram 1500 with a 5.2-liter displacement iron block, iron head, eight-cylinder (V-8) Magnum engine. This V-8 utilized multi-point fuel injection that delivered fuel through two valves per cylinder in an overhead valve configuration (for a total of 16 valves). The standard 2500 and 3500 came equipped with Dodge's 5.9-liter V-8 Magnum engine. This engine consisted of an iron block and iron heads and also utilized a multi-point fuel injection with an overhead valve, two valves per cylinder configuration. In 1998, prospective buyers could upgrade the 1500 to include the 5.9-liter Magnum engine. Buyers of the 2500 or 3500 could choose from two engine upgrades: the 8.0-liter, 10-cylinder (V-10) Magnum engine or a 5.9-liter Cummins diesel inline six-cylinder. Dodge equipped this latter engine with a turbocharger and used four valves per cylinder, for a total of 24. Dodge offered buyers of the 1998 Ram the choice between a four-speed automatic or five-speed manual transmission. All models of the 1998 Ram featured standard rear-wheel drive; drivers could upgrade to four-wheel drive.


Output varied by each engine installed. The 5.2-liter Magnum engine rated 230 horsepower at 4,400 RPM and 300 ft.-lbs. of torque at 3,200 RPM with a compression ratio of 9.1:1. Dodge's 5.9-liter Magnum V-8 achieved 245 horsepower at 4,000 RPM, 335 ft.-lbs. of torque at 3,000 RPM and a compression ratio of 8.9:1. The six-cylinder turbocharged Cummins diesel rated 230 horsepower at 2,700 RPM and 450 ft.-lbs. of torque at 1,600 RPM with a compression ratio of 16.3:1. Dodge's 8.0-liter, 10-cylinder Magnum engine cranked out 300 horsepower at 4,000 RPM, 450 ft.-lbs. of torque at 2,400 RPM and achieved a compression ratio of 8.6:1.

Towing Capacity

Towing capacity varied by model, engine and drive configuration (rear wheel vs. four-wheel). A Dodge 1500 with the 5.2-liter Magnum V8 and four-wheel drive could pull 7,200 lbs with a total gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 12,500 lbs. The Dodge 2500 with four-wheel drive and the 5.9-liter Magnum V8 could tow between 8,150 and 8,400 lbs. with a maximum GCWR of 14,000 lbs. Buyers who purchased the Ram 3500 with its standard engine and rear-wheel drive got a slightly higher towing capacity and GCWR, of 9,450 and 15,000 lbs., respectively. A 3500 with four-wheel drive and the Cummins turbo diesel could tow between 13,000 and 13,450 with a GCWR of 20,000 lbs. When equipped with the V-10 Magnum, a four-wheel drive 3500 could pull between 10,500 and 11,000 lbs. with a GCWR of 19,000 lbs.

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