2021 Ram 1500 TRX revealed: most powerful, quickest pickup in the world

This is it. The quickest, most powerful mass-produced pickup truck in the world. Introducing the 2021 Ram 1500 TRX, complete with a supercharged V8 that develops over 700hp.

As suspected, the Ram 1500 TRX does indeed come with Fiat Chrysler Automobile’s monster 6.2-litre supercharged V8 engine, otherwise known as the Hellcat. In the TRX the engine produces a monstrous 523kW (702hp) of power and 881Nm of torque. That makes it the most powerful petrol-powered pickup truck on the market.

We don’t usually hear much about official acceleration numbers for utes and pickup trucks, but Ram says the new TRX does 0-60mph (97km/h) in just 4.5 seconds, with the quarter mile claimed in just 12.9 seconds at 173.8km/h. These are some crazy numbers, and not just for a massive pickup truck. The top speed is 190km/h.

All of that grunt is sent through a ZF-based TorqueFlite 8HP95 eight-speed automatic transmission and through a part-time four-wheel drive driveline with an active transfer case. There’s also Dana 60 axles at the back running a 3.55:1 final drive ratio, with full-floating hubs and an axle-hop damper for improved traction.

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As you can see, the TRX is one mean machine and looks like it would have no trouble attacking off-road terrain. The rear differential can be locked, and the front and rear are suspended by a 2.5-inch Bilstein Black Hawk e2 adaptive damper kit. Ram says the five-link coil suspension at the back is designed to offer the best blend of comfort and handling.

At all four corners there is more than 330mm (13 inches) of wheel travel available, which is around 40 per cent more than the regular Ram 1500. FCA has also incorporated special Drive Modes and Off-Road Pages within the Uconnect 12-inch touch-screen for the first time. And there’s a new Baja drive mode presented, maximising the four-wheel drive settings and adaptive suspension for “ultimate desert performance”.

Topping it all off are a set of 18-inch by 9.0-inch wide aluminium wheels that are available in standard and beadlock capability. These are wrapped in Goodyear Wrangler Territory all-terrain tyres that measure 325/65. Ram says these have been developed exclusively for the TRX.

Being a pickup truck, the TRX holds onto much of its heavy-duty capability, offering a payload of 594kg (1310 pounds), and a towing capacity of 3674kg (8100 pounds). The TRX also offers an approach angle of 30.2 degrees, a break-over angle of 21.9 degrees, and a departure angle of 23.5 degrees. The ground clearance is 300mm (11.8 inches) and it can drive through water up to 812.8mm (32 inches) deep.

Designers have applied unique styling to the TRX, particularly at the front. A bespoke bonnet features a massive scoop that provides 50 per cent of the induction air for the engine, while the black mesh grille features the latest RAM logo with flow-through letters. There’s also LED adaptive headlights, LED clearance lights for the scoop and front bumper flares, and a set of integrated composite wheel arch moulds that add 8.0 inches to the body width.

Inside, passengers are treated to special sports seats and a huge 12-inch touch-screen media interface, and there’s a thumping 19-speaker 900W sound system by Harman/Kardon. The driver can view an all-new head-up display system that can beam up to five different content areas at once, and behind the steering wheel is a 7.0-inch TFT digital instrument cluster.

The 2021 Ram 1500 TRX will be produced at FCA’s Sterling Heights Assembly Plant in Michigan, with first deliveries expected to commence by the end of the year.

Brett is the editor and founder of Performance Drive. He's obsessed with driving, having played with Matchbox cars until he was tall enough to drive a real one. After initially working as a mechanic, Brett earned a degree in journalism and entered media as an editorial assistant at Top Gear Australia magazine. He then worked at CarAdvice.com.au. His dream is to live next door to the Nurburgring in Germany.