• Heavy Duty Drag Race: 2017 Ford F-250 vs 2017 Ram 2500 [Video]

    It’s a 2017 Ford F-250 vs 2017 Ram 2500 drag race! The truth is, it’s always a great day at the office when we get to race vehicles that were never meant to race. Not only do we enjoy doing races like this, we also appreciate the information we gain from battling it out on a track. Both vehicles throw power down with different results.

    As you may recall a few weeks ago we drag raced and reviewed this Ram versus the Chevy 2500 with the 5.3L Vortec V8. Which truck was faster? You can find out by clicking HERE.

    Today it is Ford’s turn to take on the Ram. These two trucks are as closely matched as we can get them. The 2017 Ram 2500 has a 6.4-liter Hemi V8 that makes 410 horsepower and 429 lb-ft of torque. The 2017 Ford F-250 has a 6.2-liter V8 that makes 385 hp and 430 lb-ft of torque. Both trucks use a 6-speed automatic transmission that feeds the rear wheels. Neither vehicle is equipped with a four-wheel drive (4WD) system. In fact: both trucks are almost completely bare-bones.

    One area that differentiates between the Ram and Ford is their gearing. The 2017 Ford F-250 has a 3.73 rear end while the 2017 Ram 2500 has a 4.10 rear end. The big Ford’s cab and bed are made of lightweight aluminum which gives the 2017 Ford F-250 a significant weight advantage of approximately 440-lbs. Because of this, and the difference in gearing, the two trucks are very closely matched.

    Have you ever pulled up to a freeway onramp and wanted to get the jump on the truck next to you? Check out this 2017 Ford F-250 vs 2017 Ram 2500 and see who has the advantage!

    Nathan Adlen
    Nathan Adlen
    Easily amused by anything with four wheels, Nathan Adlen reviews vehicles from the cheapest to the most prestigious. Wrecking yards, dealer lots, garages, racetracks, professional automotive testing and automotive journalism - Nathan has experienced a wide range of the automotive spectrum. Brought up in the California car culture and educated in theater, childhood education, film, journalism and history, Nathan now lives with his family in Denver, CO. His words, good humor and video are enjoyed worldwide.

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    36 thoughts on “Heavy Duty Drag Race: 2017 Ford F-250 vs 2017 Ram 2500 [Video]

    1. That was a fun close race. And you took evey effort in fairness to give the Ram another shot.

      I am sure I am right on the gearing here when I say it doesnt matter what differential is in the truck when you have two different trucks but more importantly two different transmissions. I wish you guys would post the final drive ratios. The bigger differential is only a benefit if it is swapped in the same truck. Like the F150 you tested with the 3:55 was at a disadvantage without the 3:73. In this case even though the Ram has a 4:10 differentail ford may have a lower final gear with the 3:73 that is taken up in their transmission. What we need is final gear ratios to see what truck had a gearing advantage not a diff size. Diff size only matters if its mated to the same transmission, in my opinion and I believe others have said that is correct as well.

      1. I agree with you. You would have to break down the individual gear ratios in each gear in each transmission. More gears and shorter gears and quick shifting keep you in the power band vs a few tall gears and the the engine climbing from bottom rpm to redline. Transmissions convert power from engines in gear spreads and rpm to the differential which is a final drive ratio and reroutes power 90 degrees.

      2. Tire height matters as well. This is rarely considered or stated during a comparison but is a factor in the overall final drive.

        1. that gives a mechanical advantage of 13.2 for ram and 15.5 for ford (excluding tire size)

          1. Yup just goes to show you Ford even with the 3:73 had the final gear ratio advantage and not the Ram with the 4:10. If Ford had the 4:30 they would of had a 17.9 to 13.2 advantage in gears over the Ram. WOW.

            1. one thing to consider that I dont think any of us knows for sure, when the torque converter locks up. Ford has been notorious for locking up the torque converter once in 2nd gear while others wait longer. Keeping the converter unlocked gives a big torque input shaft advantage. All torque converters have a stall speed but they never fully lock up after stall speed.

      1. Ya but Bill the truck is built with Aluminum. You cant change or alter that. Completely fair. The 3:73 and 4:10 are the best diffs each company has, so completely fair. However just because the Ram has a bigger diff does not mean its final gear ratio was an advantage.

        1. Rambro, Ford offers a 4.30 differential in the gas powered trucks like this one. The 3.73 is the base differential. The 4.30 would have made the Ford substantially quicker.

          1. That’s actually what Rambro said.

            “The bigger differential is only a benefit if it is swapped in the same truck”
            Most people tend to ignore the fact that wheel size and transmission gearing also affect acceleration.

          2. Agree completely. Give the Ford their optional 4.30 gears and this is not even close.

          3. Troverman good point, I was thinking F150. But the Ford won so the 4:30 would only prove better with all else being the same.

    2. According to “PickupTrucks.com”, who tested the same trucks, showed the scale weight of the Ram @ 5800 lbs. and the Ford @ 5980 lbs….

    3. Good fun, Roman and Nathan! Thanks.

      But acceleration needed for merging on the freeway?
      I just have a big sign on the back that says, “CAUTION SLOW”…
      …and let the little BMWs and other more pathetic sedan creations figure out what to do…
      Sometimes I am greeted with a less than completely happy hand gestures, but, what can one expect (^_^)?
      Patience, my good man, patience…


    4. And that ford only had the 3.73. I do believe 4.30 is optional on the gas super-duty. Wonder how much difference the 4.30 would make?

    5. **** correction, a Chevy 2500 should have a 6.0 liter V8, not the 5.3 in the half tons …………

    6. Me thinks that aluminum might have played in difference here. Though it would be interesting to see how the low gears in the transmission differ. Also the Ford tq band is lower in the rpm than the ram I believe. We have seen this with the eco-boost engines.

    7. again the ford is saddled with 3.73 highway gears it needs 4.30rear gears after owning 2 superdutys with both ratios 4.30 is the hands down winner shouldn’t even offer 3.73 but it still won

    8. Sam, you are clearly another youtube dolt that doesnt know what he is talking about. 3.73 gears with the 6r100 are NOT highway gears. In fact, combined with the shorter ratios of that transmission, it is very close to what a Ram has with a 4.10: 3.23 1st, 1.84, 1.41 3rd gear.

      1. Yep, it all depends on the transmission gearing.

        Look at the original Nissan Titan with the big tow pkg, it only needed 3.36 gears because of the transmission ratios to be the equivalent of a 4.10.

      2. u r clearly an idiot who probably never owned r towed with a gas superduty I have owned to with v10s and the 4.30 r superior in every way

        1. Good for you. Those were also 4 and 5 speed transmissions with much taller 1st gears than the 6r100 so rear end ratios made a huge difference.

          1. Yep if you had Automatics v-10s nihilus. they had 5 spds in 2nd gen v-10. 4 SPD 1st Gen v-10. In the 1st couple of yrs of the 1st Gen v-10 you can get 5 SPD. then last couple years of the 1st Gen v-10 you can get optional a 6 SPD manual. All 2nd gen v-10 only 6 SPD manual.
            Now that being all said I had 4:30 rear gear in one of my v-10s it was quicker than the 4:10s I got, but I wouldn’t say a whole lot. It pulled better in the mtns. But the trade off is the 2 to 3 mpg loss on the highway. Maybe 1 or 2 around the cities. Generally the Automatics are going to be quicker, but we don’t know the gearing is between the two. Plus the Automatics are short a gear. Now you look at the 2 trucks that was just compared Sam and nihilus and neither of you two mentioned how much lighter the Ford is. 450+ lbs is lot of weight to not drag around. Sam when you have less weight to tow do really need 4:30 rear gears? And nilihus I understand your point of view of the gearing , but keep in mind about that 450+ lbs of weight that the Ford is not saddled with.
            In drag racing circles 100 lbs is worth about a 10th in the qtr mile.
            Also I believe the tq in the 6.2 is lower than the ram 6.4.
            Now this is my opinion I believe the weight I think played a roll on 6.2 win here on this little test. And maybe lower tq in the 6.2.

            1. Tfl is using claimed weight. I believe when pickuptrucks.com weighed them both Ford was actually a few poinds heavier.

              That being said nihilism is right about the transmission gearing being the determining factor these days.

              The original Superior Duty had a 4spd – 4R100, then a 5spd-5R100, then a 6spd – 5R100, then the 6.7 diesel came out and they made it into a 6R140.

              They are loosely based on the original heavy duty C6 3spd auto from way back when. Super tuff, durable and made in house by a Ford!

              With this new Super Duty and a gas V8 engine you get a completely different trans. It is a modified heavier duty version of the F 150’s 6R80.

              This is a ZF based German trans produced under license by Ford. It came out in 2011 and has proven to be very durable and trouble free.

              However it has completely different internal gear ratios than the old Super Duty transmissions.

              It’s also much less internal friction loss and allows the new Super Duty to put more HP’s to the ground!

              I’m usually a big fan of the lower 4.30 gears especially with the older ratio transmissions from the past, but 4.30 could actually work against this truck and make it slower up the Ike under max load!

              With 4.30’s and max load at the top and that 385hp V8 has turned into a 255hp V8 it could force the truck to stay in 3rd. This would cause it to dog down to say 35mph before allowing a downshift to 2nd and get back to the HP peak.

              With 3.73’s it could allow a downshift at say 45-50mph and quickly allow it to hang around 5000rpm and maintain 50-60mph and then stay there!

              Perfect example of this already happened. Go back and watch the 2016 F150 video on the Ike.

              It easily downshift to 2nd and stayed there around 5000rpm at 60mph. This allowed it to fairly easily pull 9000lbs up the Ike. Yes it was revving like crazy most of the way up, but this sweet spot is where a naV8 must live to pull max load at altitude.

              It had 3.55 gears. With 3.73 gears, yes it may be quicker accelerating but it would of forced an up shift to 3rd back and forth on this climb to not overrevv the engine.

              It also would of taken more speed loss before it allowed a downshift to 2nd. Same reasons to not overrevv the engine.

            2. Drifter. The transmissions were the 4R100 like you said and then 5R110W and 6R140. The ZF licensed transmissions were prior to 2011 with the 6R60 and 6R80. There was an early name but I don’t recall the first one in the Expedition. After 2011 it was all Ford. They improved dramatically the design of the ZF design to make it shift better and hold up even better.

            3. Drifter, good example with the Ike. Shorter gears are not always better when your goal is max power at a certain speed.

    9. Ford made changes to the 6.2 as well. Can’t wait to hear more about the supposed 7.0 coming out in a few years.

      1. I believe the only change was different camshafts. I don’t believe anything else was changed in the 6.2L.

    10. The Ram HD’s use to have independent front suspension with rack and pinion steering. They drove great! Then Diaz went to the solid beam for sake of payload.

    11. It could be the difference in torque reduction applied by the ECU. It would be nice to know how much power we actually lose in these newer trucks, with all the anti-fun nannies kicking in. Sad we have to buy tuners to get back the power they advertise.

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