This was inevitable—a predetermined outcome several years in the making. Heavy-duty pickup trucks from Detroit’s Big Three have been duking it out for torque supremacy. Over the last few years, torque numbers have inched into the high triple digits, getting ever closer to four figures. Ram finally hit the four-figure mark at the 2019 Detroit Auto Show with the introduction of the 2019 Ram HD thanks to having 1,000 pound-feet of torque on tap.
All that torque is reserved for the Ram Heavy Duty equipped with the Cummins 6.7-liter turbodiesel. The engine produces 400 horsepower and the 1,000 lb-ft of torque mentioned above, which gives the pickup a towing capacity of 35,100 pounds and a payload capacity of 7,680 pounds. The 2019 Ram HD features a new generation of Cummins’ inline-six diesel that’s 60 pounds lighter. Also new are cast-iron cylinder heads, stronger pistons, and a new exhaust system. Power hits the wheels through a six-speed automatic gearbox. A detuned version of the 6.7-liter engines still produces 370 hp and 850 lb-ft of torque. The debuted version uses a different six-speed gearbox.
That’s not to say that the 2020 Chevrolet Silverado HD is a slouch by comparison. The 2020 Chevrolet Silverado HD is said to produce 910 lb-ft of torque from its Duramax 6.6-liter turbodiesel V8. Chevrolet unveiled the Silverado HD pickup last month, however other performance numbers have been kept under wraps. The automaker said during the Silverado’s reveal that the 6.6L Duramax diesel engine will get a new 10-speed Allison-branded gearbox that will increase going and payload capabilities.
Even though the 2020 Silverado HD is slightly down on power, it’s likely a safe bet to predict the 2019 Ram HD won’t be the only heavy-duty pickup truck with 1,000 or more pound-feet of torque on the market for long. Pickup trucks are a numbers game, and Chevy knows that just as much as Ram and Ford.