At the 2015 Ford F-150 reveal Bill Ford trotted out what he hopes to be a "tougher and smarter" look for their iconic pickup. With tidy proportions, an imposing face and a glorious panoramic sunroof, that look is good.
The regular cab two-door, SuperCab extended, and SuperCrew full four-door layouts are back. The 6.5- and 8-foot bed options are available on the smaller trucks, with 5.5- and 6.5-foot beds for the crew cab. Overall length ranges from the shortest truck at 209.3 up to 243.7 inches.
The headlights are just about all that reminds me of the Atlas concept, in fact the face feels like a combination of outgoing F-250 and the new Toyota Tundra.
Based on how much larger modern vehicles tend to be than their predecessors, I was worried the F-150 would consume my entire field of view. But from where I was standing, even the SuperCrew didn't look larger than the outgoing model. Of course, they were parked in a hockey stadium.
The bed-mounted neons we saw on the Atlas did not make it to production, but the F-150 bristles with LED lights for workspace and exterior illumination.
The interior is angular and purposeful, with a robust center armrest and commanding view from behind the wheel. The large touch-screen With enough juice to charge tools, 400 watt/110v outlets might be my favorite option. The edges feel less defined than Chevrolet's latest full-size pickups — Ford continues to have more roundness inside than GM.
Everything above the Lariat trim level has the the eight-inch touch screen.
Much to my disappointment, no details on output or economy were revealed about the 2.7 EcoBoost, 3.5 V6, 3.5 EcoBoost, or 5.0 V8.
We do know that the same compacted graphite iron used in Ford's 6.7 Power Stroke diesel makes up the block of the 2.7 EcoBoost, paired to all-aluminum cylinder heads. Ford is using fracture split main-bearing caps are used for the first time to reduce friction and improve fit, while a variable displacement oil pump feeds lubrication.
The oil filter is cartridge style, accessed from the top of the engine for easy servicing and the 2.7 also features auto start/stop technology to reduce fuel burn.
In addition to extensive lab and field testing, Ford says they ran the engine in the Baja 1000. Can we please borrow that test mule?
The variable-timing 5.0 and 3.5 liter N/A engines can run on regular or E85, the boosted offerings are unleaded only but don't require premium.
The XL, XLT, Lariat, King Ranch, and Platinum trim levels are carried over from the current body style and maintain that order from spartan to sexy. The King Ranch and Platinum trucks feature the 5.0-liter V8 standard and the Platinum tops the range with 2o" rims, power running boards, genuine wood interior trim pieces, a special gauge face, and two-tone leather.
The work-oriented trim levels have a lot more matte surfaces where the fancier rigs are bedazzled in chrome.
We'll wait patiently for engine performance specifications, and any announcements regarding the next rendition of the Raptor.
Images: Brian Williams