The guys and gals at Ram have something to celebrate. The Crew Cab model with optional equipment is the first full-size pickup truck to earn a Top Safety Pick Plus from the insurance industry-funded IIHS. Following the firm's barrage of crash tests and other evaluations, the 2020 Ram 1500 walked away with the highest rating available.
Ram said on Tuesday that the truck earned "Good" ratings in all six crashworthiness tests -- including the tricky passenger-side small overlap front test. Ram credited its patented frame-rail construction, which is splayed to help manage the impact in various frontal crashes.
With a "Good" rating in all six crash tests, the IIHS then requires vehicles to score an "Advanced" or better rating for frontal-crash avoidance. Here, the technology is optional on the 2020, but it earned a highest-rated "Superior" mark.
Perhaps the toughest test to pass for any vehicle on its way to becoming a Top Safety Pick Plus is the headlights test. After engineers tweaked the optional adaptive LED projector headlights with high-beam assist, the IIHS found them good enough to dish out a "Good" rating, which is no small task. Numerous cars have been close to a Top Safety Pick Plus only to have their headlights let them down. Even one ranking down, "Acceptable," bumps a vehicle off the Top Safety Pick Plus track and down to a Top Safety Pick. Anything less than an "Acceptable" rating and a vehicle is not eligible for any award.
Of course, it's important to note the 2020 Ram 1500's award is not a blanket statement. It applies only to the crew cab model with active safety equipment included and the optional LED lights. Other Ram 1500 models technically don't qualify for the award.
The only other pickup to earn one of the IIHS' top honors is the Honda Ridgeline, which walked away with a Top Safety Pick. The Ridgeline does not boast a body-on-frame platform, which makes the Ram the first "true" pickup to earn either award.