Ike Gauntlet: Preview of second Light Duty Extreme Towing Series

ike gauntlet 2013 ram 2014 tundra extreme towing test

You asked TFLtruck to do more Ike Gauntlet Extreme Towing test, so here it is.  The second series of the light duty Ike Gauntlet is coming and the participants are: 2014 Toyota Tundra and 2013 Ram 1500 Sport.

The criteria for selecting the pickups for the Ike Gauntlet is simple.  The truck must be a Crew Cab with 4×4.  It must be properly equipped for towing and have a maximum tow rating of at least 9,000 lbs.  There is no price cap for trucks to participate in this test, but we regularly remind the manufacturers that outright towing capability is the name of the game.  So pickups with long wheelbases, long beds, and luxurious options may be at a disadvantage.  Manufacturers provide TFLtruck with the test vehicles for the test.

2013 ram 1500 crew sport 4x4 cab video

The Trucks:

The 2014 Toyota Tundra CrewMax 4×4 Limited has been updated for the 2014 model year.  It’s a cosmetic update with new exterior sheet metal and fresh interior design.  The 5.7-liter iForce V8 and 6-speed automatic transmission remain, as does the 4.30 rear-end.  The 2013 Ram 1500 CrewCab 4×4 Sport represents a thorough redesign for the 2013 model year.  Exterior is very similar to the previous model, but most other aspects have been go over and updated.  The familiar 5.7-liter HEMI is now backed by a 8-speed automatic.  The frame has seen some updates, and can accommodate optional air suspension at all four corners.  There are active grill shutters for improved fuel economy and many other updated features.

The Load:

We carefully chose a load that will stress these pickups near their maximum ratings.  Enter the Diamond in the Rough – the 1978 Lincoln Continental Mark V Diamond Jubilee edition, which is sitting on a double axle flat bed trailer.  Total weight of the Lincoln and trailer is: 7,120 lbs.  Yep, this Lincoln has a lot of heft.  That’s not all.  Don’t forget that Roman, Nathan, and Mr Truck Kent Sundling are in the truck to provide the data and commentary.  Lets just say that the guys and gear add another 850 lbs – if we are rounding up.

ike gauntlet

The Test:

This extreme test is designed to showcase how the truck cope with towing a load, which is 85% or higher of their maximum tow rating, at high elevation and up a steep grade.  The Ike Gauntlet is going down and up the eight mile stretch of interstate I-70 between the Eisenhower/Johnson Memorial Tunnel and the town of Silverthorn.  There is more than 2,000 feet of elevation change with an average 7% grade.  The finish line is at 11,158 feet above sea level!

Series Two – Light Duty Edition

2014 Toyota Tundra 2013 Ram 1500
Model CrewMax 4×4 Limited CrewCab 4×4 Sport
 As Tested $ $45,220 $54,355
Engine 5.7-liter V8 iForce 5.7-liter V8 HEMI
Transmission 6-speed Auto 8-speed Auto
Power (hp / lb-ft) 381 / 401 395 / 407
Tow Rating 9,600 lbs (4.30 axle) 10,000 lbs (3.92 axle)
Payload 1,410 lbs 1,330 lbs
Wheelbase 145.7 in 140.7 in
Test Load (trailer + ppl) 8,000 lbs 8,000 lbs
Down: Brake Temp (Front / Rear/ Trailer) F TBD TBD
Down: Transmission Temp TBD TBD
Up: Time TBD TBD
Up: Transmission Temp TBD TBD

Here is the Ike Gauntlet – Series Two video trailer.  Enjoy!

Andre Smirnov

Andre Smirnov is a life-long automotive enthusiast, writer, reporter, and software engineer. He has been a contributor at TFL since 2011. When not working or spending time with the family – you can find him tinkering in the garage or simply ‘going for a drive’.