Introduced on February 14th, 2019 at the Canadian International Autoshow in Toronto, Ontario the Ram 1500 Classic Warlock expands on the capability and style of the Ram classic lineup. Before we get into our quick take of this truck I want to thank our friends at White Rock Dodge for allowing us to use their truck to review for you guys today.
The original Dodge Warlock was sold from1976 to 1979 as a customized factory pickup truck with unique wheels, fat tires, chrome running boards, real oak bed sideboards and gold accent stripes on the interior and exterior.
Does this Ram Classic Warlock live up to the original or is it just a sticker package? Lets dig in and find out.
Visually the Warlock uses the old Rebel grille and black powder coated bumpers, black fender flares, LED fog lights, black projector headlights and led taillights, black badging, tow hooks, unique hood decals, and the option of the Sport hood. The Warlock that was on the auto show tour along with FCAs media photos of the truck had Warlock stickers on the bedsides, according to a dealer document we have seen those stickers won’t show up on production trucks until the 2020 models come out.
Mechanically the Warlock comes standard with the 305 Horsepower Pentastar V6 that puts out 269 pound-feet of torque, the 395 horsepower 5.7 Hemi V8 is optional and develops 410 pound-feet of torque. Both engines are backed by the Torqueflite 8 speed automatic and the Warlock is available in 2 or 4 wheel drive. The Warlock gets a 1-inch suspension lift and heavy-duty rear shocks as standard.
The interior of the Warlock is diesel gray cloth, standard are rear park assist, and the luxury group which includes a leather-wrapped steering wheel, auto-dimming rearview mirror, overhead console, premium instrument cluster with a customizable 7-inch display, led box lighting and power folding mirrors. Optional are heated front bench or bucket seats, 8.4-inch Uconnect with navigation, black side steps and a spray on bed liner.
This particular truck starts out as an SLT Quad Cab with a base price of $48,720 Canadian. Adding the Warlock package for $2,995 Canadian plus the heated front bucket seats, 3.92 gears, anti-spin diff, 32-gallon fuel tank, class 4 hitch receiver, and a trailer brake controller brings the Canadian MSRP of this truck to $59,825 Canadian. Currently, in Canada Ram 1500 Classic models have a 25 percent off MSRP offer which would put this truck right around $44,870.
Now that we have covered all that let’s see how this thing drives.
Now the reason we call these quick takes is because we borrow these vehicles from the dealer instead of getting them from the manufacturer. With these being vehicles that the dealer is selling we only have a limited amount of time with them and want to keep the mileage to a minimum so these are just our initial impressions.
Out on the road, the ride is smooth and really the only pickups that ride better are the new DT model Ram 1500s. Power delivery is smooth and strong and the 8-speed automatic shifts quickly and smoothly.
Ram went to electric power steering in 2013 and the system is tuned and weighted so well that you wouldn’t know that it’s not a hydraulic setup. Cornering is good for a pickup although these 20 inch Goodyear Wranglers aren’t the grippiest tires around which is something I’ll get more into later on.
Braking feel is fairly numb but braking performance is good. The truck stops decently well but doesn’t hold a candle to the all-new Ram 1500 on stopping performance.
Visibility is good all around with a commanding view of the road and lots of glass area. For their size, these trucks have quite a tight turning radius and really drive like they are smaller than they really are.
Interior materials quality is on the lower end of acceptable and again not on the level of the all-new Ram 1500, nor should it be being an older design. The dash including the dash top is all hard plastic the door panel armrests and tops had soft material which makes it much more comfortable to rest your elbow on. The seat cloth was a nice material that should wear well and fit and finish was excellent which is a trend I’ve noticed with all FCA products I’ve driven in the past few years. As an owner of a 2016 Ram 1500 Sport, I was surprised at how much of a downgrade the SLT interior is, I also feel that the diesel gray color doesn’t do the interior any favors and makes it appear even cheaper than it is.
What I don’t get about this truck is why go through the trouble of making it look like the old Rebel and include the 1-inch suspension lift but then neuter it with these crappy tires on black 20-inch express rims. I know that it is easy to change after the fact but from the factory, it doesn’t look right. In my opinion, they should have gone with the older Rebel wheels and a set of all-terrain tires or at least put some decent all terrains on these wheels. Then it truly would have been a Rebel classic minus the interior features.
In the end, do I think this truck is worth it to purchase in 2019? Overall it’s a good truck and still competitive to this day with some of the competition but I’d have to say no. Keep in mind that discounts change and the MSRP for this truck is almost $60,000 Canadian, for a truck that doesn’t even have remote start, has a manual rear sliding window and isn’t even a crew cab. As I mentioned above the price of this truck after discounts is $44,870 Canadian, building a 2019 Ram 1500 “DT” Quad Cab with the 4×4 off-road group and optioned similarly comes in at $48,830 with current discounts. That is 4 grand very well spent and the way I would personally go. Take discounts out of the equation and just go MSRP to MSRP and the 2019 Ram DT Big Horn is actually $500 less at $59,330.
Do I think it lives up to the Warlock name? Again no. If they wanted to do the Warlock name justice they could have built a regular cab sport truck in the same vein as the original. Instead, this is more of a Rebel Classic with street tires on it for some reason. This seems like an answer to a question nobody asked and a way to dump a bunch of excess parts. A better idea for this truck would have been something akin to the Power Wagon trim on the Ram HD Tradesman, a stripped down version of the truck like an express with the Rebel functional features and all-terrain tires. My bet is that would have sold better than this truck will. That said if you were a fan of the older Rebel or prefer the 4th gen trucks to the 5th gen thus truck could be worth a look if you can get a really good deal on it.
In my opinion, when looking at the Ram Classic you’re best off sticking with the value models such as the Express models which can be had for the mid to high $ 30K Canadian range which is much cheaper than you could touch an new Ram 1500 “DT” model for. That is where you really win on the value proposition and it makes sense to go with the older Classic.