If you’re wading through the cluttered landscape of off-roading full-size pickup trucks to find your next rig, you probably think you’d be satisfied with any four-wheel drive truck. After all, you just need a capable 4×4 to get the job done. The thing is, there are four-wheel drive trucks, then there is the 2021 Ram 1500 Rebel. It’s the difference between a cubic zirconia and a flawless diamond. We’re not kidding. That’s why you should stop shopping and head to a Ram 1500 Rebel dealer. Today.
We get excited about the 2021 Ram 1500 Rebel because it contains additional off-roading equipment designed specifically for the task. Sure, it will power through any weather and handle towing like a boss, but when it comes to serious trail trekking, the Rebel will go practically anywhere. Ram trucks have already won the day with the best styling and most luxurious and tech-laden trucks in the industry, but add this overlay of off-roading-specific gear – like the extra one inch of lift and an electronic locking rear axle – and you’re running out of reasons why it’s not the perfect choice.
Ram differentiates the Rebel from all the other 1500 trims by outfitting the interior with special stitching and accenting that’s both bold and unique. The automaker knows that buyers in this category want not only beastly capability but visual recognition that their truck is special as well. With a starting price of $45,320, the Rebel is reasonably affordable too. We take a look at what makes this truck one of the most complete off-roading options and make our case for why you should not buy a 4×4 pickup until you have an opportunity to drive this one. The Ram 1500 Rebel ticks all the boxes, including a surprising one: style. What makes this trim so special? Read on for more information about the Rebel.
What makes the Rebel a little different from its siblings in the Ram 1500 lineup? Let’s start on the outside. Because of its extra 1-inch lift, the Rebel’s stance is taller and more aggressive than other Ram truck trims. That extra 1-inch contributes to a significant boost in off-roading capability too, which we’ll cover next. Special ‘Rebel’ badging adorns the rear quarter panels, further differentiating it from the pack.
On the inside, Ram has incorporated special laser engraved red accenting throughout the cabin, including on the seats, the doors, the dash, and the steering wheel. Special vinyl and cloth seats are built for comfort, especially over rough trails and uneven road surfaces. The Rebel badge is prominent on the seats, too, lending the interior a custom look buyers will love.
Aggressive LED headlights and taillights are standard on the Rebel, giving it the best kind of angry look, both coming and going. We like how the LED lights look alongside the Rebel’s lifted body and the standard all-terrain tires. Combined, this truck looks like it’s ready for dirt, mud, snow, or anything in-between.
If you’re pulling the trigger on a 2021 Ram 1500 Rebel, we recommend bypassing the standard 3.6-liter V6 eTorque engine and splurging on the $4,995 upgraded Gen 3 3.0-liter V6 Turbo Diesel engine. That buys you 12,560 pounds of max towing capacity and delivers a best-in-its-class 480 lb-ft of torque. You also get the added benefit of upgrading to diesel is Ram’s 5-year/100,000-mile Diesel Powertrain Warranty.
One of our favorite Ram Truck features is the cleverly-designed multifunction tailgate. The best part is its 60/40 split swing-out doors. While it functions just fine as a traditional top-down tailgate, the swing doors help with easier access, especially when hooked up to a trailer. The doors swing out 88 degrees, meaning bed access is a lot easier when loading bulky cargo.
All Ram Trucks benefit from special aerodynamic styling that earns the lineup another best-in-class distinction: most aerodynamic truck in its class. The hood is elevated in a way that streamlines air efficiently across the windshield, and the roof design optimizes sending air to the rear spoiler. The Ram’s frame is nearly completely made of high-strength steel, which makes it incredibly durable, but also stiff in a way that helps with towing capability.
We also love the 4-corner air suspension, unique to the Ram line of pickups. It works by cycling through five different height selections, chosen by the driver via a toggle button on the dash. Drivers can dial in ride height for all different driving conditions. Choose a higher ride height for more ground clearance when traversing off-road trails, or lower the ride height for better fuel economy and more aerodynamics at highway speeds.
Of all the Ram 1500’s diverse trims, the Rebel is the one Car and Driver chose as the best value with the most features for the 10Best list. The editors also cite the Ram’s impressive span of technology as another reason this truck gets high marks. Because Ram has designed add-on packages at a few different price points, buyers can dial in exactly the extra features they want without having to accept equipment they don’t.
Add the Rebel Level 2 Equipment group for $3,000 more, and your 1500 Rebel comes with dual-zone air conditioning, power heated and fold-away mirrors, heated seats and steering wheel, power pedals, remote start, and more. The $2,995 Rebel 12 Package adds Ram’s incredible 12-inch infotainment touchscreen, a 19-speaker Harman Kardon Premium audio system, and leather-trimmed seats.
More on that infotainment touchscreen: by now, we all understand how handy the touchscreen is for smartphone connectivity and displaying turn-by-turn directions. Already, cars without touchscreens seem unusually dated. But the Ram’s 12-inch touchscreen is a class unto itself. It offers a customizable home screen and a split-screen display option, and its portrait-mounted orientation takes up almost the entire center dashboard, making it ergonomically easy to access. Ram utilizes the Uconnect operating system to power the infotainment touchscreen, so it’s incredibly responsive to one-touch commands and transitions from screen-to-screen lightning fast. Android Auto and Apple CarPlay connectivity are included, and the available 4G Wi-Fi Hotspot is perfect for keeping everyone connected while traversing a mountain trail.
Keep Your Eye On Ram
Ram trucks continue racking up industry accolades, including earning the coveted 2021 Motortrend Truck of the Year award and Consumer Guide’s 2021 Best Buy (for the 13th year in a row). It’s not often a manufacturer can hit the sweet spot of value and desirability, but that’s exactly what Ram achieved with this current generation of full-size 1500 pickups, specifically the Rebel.
It’s hard to find a sure thing in this crazy world, but the 2021 Ram 1500 Rebel is a guarantee. It’s the best, hardest working four-wheel drive off-roader available, which makes it worth every penny. With customizable features and the opportunity to add luxury interior finishes, it truly offers the perfect blend of brawn and beauty. These days, pickup truck buyers want more than capability with vinyl seats and crank windows; they’re looking for a comfortable, luxurious vehicle that can seamlessly go from job site to desert trail to valet and feel right at home anywhere.
If you’re shopping for a full-size pickup with proven off-roading capability, we think a trip to your local Ram dealer is the best and fastest way to find exactly what you’re looking for, at a price that’s surprisingly affordable. Don’t miss the new Ram pickup truck series. Good looks meet class-leading capability in this aerodynamically-efficient workhorse.