Places the Ram took us over the year Heads down, tears trickling from our eyes, it was the worst day around the office in more than a year. No one was let go, no one was ill, but our immediate family did take a huge hit when all we could see was the Ram's taillights in the distance. The '09 Dodge Ram long-term test truck was on its way back to Detroit and all we could do was pout like little girls who didn't get any ice cream. But we'll always have our memories...

Having myself experienced over a dozen long-term test trucks and SUVs, it's not uncommon to be sad for a day or two after one leaves for its final voyage. But what made the Ram's departure such a letdown was the large void it left in our fleet. The '09 Dodge Ram does everything well-and we do mean everything. Cruising around town is a breeze with its responsive and easy steering, blasting down the freeway with the Hemi's 390 hp is as simple as applying the right pedal, and even long road trips proved a simple task for the Ram, returning respectable mileage and comfort in a combination unlike any other fullsize truck. We didn't just cruise around town however, we used the Ram to tow other trucks all over California and Nevada, crammed the bed and cab full of furniture when helping friends move, and explored off-road paths with ease.

Superlatives are easy to come by when praising the Ram, but like all things in life, everything wasn't rainbows and winning lotto tickets. Notes from the logbook were in agreement for the navigation; Easier to use than previous generation Chrysler units, but with the constant navigation "updating route," inability to save current state, and search functions, there are still many areas that need improvement. Thumbing through the logbook, the shortcomings were short and sweet. During our Truck of the Year testing, we all felt the '09 Ford F-150 was going to take home the top prize, that is until Dodge delivered our '09 Dodge Ram and we got some seat time behind the wheel. Winning us over then, we're confident we made the right choice. Parting is such sweet sorrow.

Rather than show you more photos of our test Ram, we opted to show you some of the incredible places the Dodge took us over the year.

PROS
• Great Hemi power
• Comfortable ride
• Elegant interior with high-quality materials
• RamBox utility
• Incredible seats with heat and A/C
• Endless list of options (heated steering wheel, sunroof, power sliding rear window, rear DVD entertainment center, Sirius radio, backup camera, etc.)
• 18.7 mpg over the span of 27,000 miles

CONS
• $52,600 sticker price
• Navigation hiccups
• RamBox $1,895 option
• Bed capacity compromise