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Old 11-20-2007, 09:41 PM
  #41  
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interior looks almost the same. Think Ford doesn't want to mess with a good thing. WHich is probably why the Explorer is taking forever to see a redesign.
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Old 11-21-2007, 01:45 PM
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Old 11-21-2007, 03:02 PM
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Originally Posted by danny25
x 2
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Old 11-21-2007, 03:29 PM
  #44  
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Old 01-12-2008, 11:59 AM
  #45  
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2009

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Old 01-12-2008, 05:56 PM
  #46  
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Yuck! Reminds me of a Tonka truck
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Old 01-12-2008, 11:13 PM
  #47  
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the 09 begs for a billet or full mesh grille....the aftermarket is slapping high-fives
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Old 01-12-2008, 11:59 PM
  #48  
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I love the F-150, but I just can't see myself liking the 09 model

Comparing it to the Saleen further up (which is a gorgeous truck) it seems like a step backwards to me...

Maybe it will look better in person, hopefully...
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Old 01-13-2008, 11:15 AM
  #49  
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2009 Ford F-150

What is it?
2009 Ford F-150

What's special about it?
It's not too much of a stretch to say that the introduction of the 2009 Ford F-150 pickup is the only introduction at the 2008 Detroit Auto Show that really matters.

For exactly 1 billion years, the F-150 has been the biggest-selling vehicle in these here United States. This remains the case despite improvements to the Ford's most potent competitors from Dodge and GM, not to mention the concerted efforts of Nissan and Toyota.

If it's any indication of how competitive the truck market has become, consider that it's been only five years since the F-150 was last completely redesigned. It used to be that a pickup — the symbol of utilitarian consistency — could go a decade without a complete overhaul. Now the pickup product cycle is essentially identical to that of the midsize sedan.

For the new F-150, Ford has decided that pickups should be ever more brutish-looking. The result is a nearly flat monolithic face that towers above all who dare approach it. Specifically, Ford stole a page from its own design book for pickup trucks and plastered a version of the company's cartoonishly humongous Super Duty grille across the F-150. The grille is flanked by headlights that recall the Ford Edge. Consider the tall, nearly flat body sides, outside mirrors that are supposed to look like they're mounted on two fat struts and a tall cargo-box side; no one is likely to call the new truck wimpy.

Tailgates are boring, Ford thinks. So it's made the F-150 tailgate unique with a sort of spoiler lip hanging off the top edge and some horizontal ribbing across the expanse of the gate. It's surely distinctive, but it might make a pretty poor canvas for airbrushed portraiture of deer heads or desert landscape murals as favored by a small segment of pickup owners.

And because a V6 just doesn't sound nearly as burly as a V8, Ford will no longer offer the 202-horsepower 4.2-liter V6 that was the F-150's base engine last year. For 2009, the F-150 will be an all-V8 proposition. Two versions of the 4.6-liter V8 — one with two valves per cylinder familiar from last year and one with three — will represent the bulk of sales. The upgrade engine will be the 5.4-liter V8 with three valves per cylinder, just as in years past.

Ford will not release horsepower figures for the 2009 engines. But it's fair to assume that they'll be similar in output to last year's motors. This means the 5.4-liter will make at least 300 hp and 365 pound-feet of torque. The two-valve 4.6-liter will make about 250 hp and 300 lb-ft of torque, and the three-valve version of that motor should make around 275 hp. If these power figures are accurate, they'll be on the low side for V8s in the class. Ford will allow that the new lineup will return a 1 mpg improvement in efficiency versus the outgoing engines. And Ford acknowledges that it will offer a diesel engine and a turbocharged direct-injected engine — likely a 3.5-liter V6 — in 2010.

The 5.4-liter and the 4.6-liter with the three-valve heads will come standard with a six-speed automatic transmission. The base V8 will come with a four-speed auto. Naturally, a range of axle ratios will be offered.

Ford says that with three cab styles, four cargo bed options and seven trim levels, the F-150 can be configured in 35 different model combinations. We don't have the space to explore them all here (or anywhere, for that matter). Like competitors, the F-150 will come as a regular cab, a cab with a decent-size rear seat (Super Cab), or a Super Crew that features a wheelbase that's 6 inches longer than that of the current model.

Bed lengths range from 5.5 feet to 8 feet. And wheel sizes range from 17-inchers to 20s. The other major mechanical systems are familiar: rear- or four-wheel drive, independent front and live axle rear suspension, and four-wheel disc brakes. Ford says it has further reinforced the fully boxed frame of the F-150 to boost the truck's payload and towing capacities, but failed to mention by how much. The four-wheel drive is a conventional system with high and low ranges. No fancy all-wheel-drive system will be offered.

There are still five trim levels (XL, STX, XLT, FX4, Lariat) along with the King Ranch. New for '09 is the F-150 Platinum, a luxury pickup for all those rich people who inexplicably wanted the recently discontinued Lincoln Mark LT but didn't act quickly enough. It features a whole suite of luxury and convenience options including the Sync hands-free communication and entertainment system, voice-activated navigation system and a 700-watt audio system. Sirius Travel Link combines with navigation to provide traffic and weather conditions and fuel price information for more than 120,000 gas stations, which the truck will no doubt visit on a regular basis.

All F-150s will offer a heapin' helpin' of electronic safety systems, including ABS, traction control, stability control with roll mitigation and something called Trailer Sway Control (TSC). As its name indicates, TSC aims to control the, um, sway of your trailer by using the truck's stability control system. Also available for tow hounds is an integrated trailer brake controller and rearview camera assist.

To more easily use the available cargo space, the Ford F-150 will be offered with options like a retractable step to ease access to the side of the bed, a tailgate step first shown by the Super Duty and a three-piece bed extender that snaps together when in use and disassembles when it's not.

What's Edmunds' take?
There are some notable improvements here. But there's also notably stiff competition and brand loyalty won't necessarily last forever. Game on. — Daniel Pund, Senior Editor, Detroit
http://www.edmunds.com/insideline/au...hotopanel..2.*
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Old 01-13-2008, 01:45 PM
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I like it a little more now...Thats for sure...
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Old 01-13-2008, 02:13 PM
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The interior looks great! Also, standard V8 power and the upgraded 5.4L V8 gets a 6-speed auto. Not bad at all.
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Old 01-13-2008, 02:17 PM
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p.s. This should've been a new thread not a continuation of a thread started over 4 years ago.
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Old 01-13-2008, 04:32 PM
  #53  
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The nice thing is that Ford will have new engines available shortly. The BOSS engine, Ecoboost, and diesel should give customers a good selection of powertrain options.
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Old 01-13-2008, 04:35 PM
  #54  
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Hate the Altezza taillights. Love the interior. Hate the front.
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Old 01-13-2008, 09:21 PM
  #55  
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I can live with the one that doesn't have the chrome grill. But with that chrome its just
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Old 01-13-2008, 09:42 PM
  #56  
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Originally Posted by S A CHO
I love the F-150, but I just can't see myself liking the 09 model

Comparing it to the Saleen further up (which is a gorgeous truck) it seems like a step backwards to me...

Maybe it will look better in person, hopefully...

very very true
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Old 01-14-2008, 11:40 AM
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The interior if first class... very, very nice. The exterior is a huge let down for me. I expected much more.
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Old 02-14-2008, 11:19 PM
  #58  
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Pics of the 2009 version...




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Old 02-14-2008, 11:20 PM
  #59  
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Press release...

Ford introduces the new 2009 F-150, the new benchmark in the full-size pickup segment from the industry's truck leader. F-150 offers the most capability, most "smart" features and most choice in the full-size pickup market.

F-150 is new from the inside and out - from its segment-first features, tough new exterior, more spacious, flexible and refined interior and unparalleled choice of cab styles and trim levels - including a new Platinum series that redefines truck luxury. F-150 expands its capability by adding more usable interior space to the SuperCrew model, a stronger, lighter frame - which provides improved horsepower and fuel economy - and more standard safety features than previous models.

Ford has built more than 33 million F-Series pickups since 1948, and F-Series has been America's best-selling truck line for 31 years.

MOBILE OFFICE TECHNOLOGIES: Ford Work Solutions makes
the F-150 smarter and more capable


Ford Work Solutions is an industry-exclusive suite of innovative and affordable technologies that includes four industry-first features:

An in-dash computer, powered by Microsoft Windows CE with Windows Auto, provides full high-speed Internet access, via Sprint Mobile Broadband Network, and works with Bluetooth-enabled mobile phones. The “Built Ford Tough’ computer, integrated into the trucks’ center stack, is equipped with a 6.5-inch, high-resolution touch screen (with stylus), two gigabytes of memory, a secure digital slot for additional memory, a USB port, and a wireless keyboard and mouse.

Tool Link – a Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) asset tracking system created in partnership with DEWALT– helps keep a detailed inventory of the tools or equipment in the pickup box. RFID tags can be fastened to tools or other items; a number of tags are provided with the system, with additional tags available through DEWALT. When the vehicle is started, a pair of RFID antennas, mounted in corrosion- and impact-resistant housings on the inside of the pickup box, scan the box for the items on a pre-programmed inventory list. Hundreds of RFID tags can be read in a matter of seconds.

Crew Chief, a telematics and diagnostics system, links data to a web-based application that can be used by a fleet administrator and viewed anywhere there is Internet access, such as Ford Work Solutions’ in-dash computer.

Cable Lock is a robust locking system developed in partnership with MasterLock® to keep valuable equipment secure in an open pickup box. The strong, eight-foot, 10 millimeter steel cable is easily woven around toolbox handles or through and around items and locked to the truck with a cuff-style clasp. It can be installed on virtually any Ford pickup truck.

Ford Work Solutions will be available later this summer on the 2009 F-150 XL, XLT and FX4, and F-Series Super Duty XL and XLT pickups and E-Series vans. Transit Connect vans join the lineup in mid 2009. Many items will be available for dealer installation to upgrade existing trucks already in service.

BENEFITING YOUR BUSINESS: Ford Work Solutions gets you
online on-site, and anything else you need to be productive


Thirty-five percent of F-150s, and 65 percent of F-Series Super Duty, are sold to commercial customers. In fact, Ford commands a 40 percent share of the total commercial vehicle market for class 2 to class 7 trucks.

Commercial drivers need productivity-focused features for effective on-site project management. The new 2009 F-150 and F-Series Super Duty become true mobile offices with the Ford Work Solutions suite of technological tools that let the working professional:

Print and access any Word document, Excel spreadsheet or business accounting program stored on their home or office computer, make changes, and send to the battery-powered inkjet printer in their truck. Remotely access QuickBooks, engineering drawings and other files without having to load software onto the vehicle’s computer.

Keep track of high-value tools, safety equipment and material inventories. The driver is alerted by in-dash computer screen if anything is missing on the truck. Tool Link also saves a snapshot of the first list of the day to reference against at the day’s end.

Navigate with Garmin features like re-routing due to construction or traffic congestion, finding local restaurants, Ford dealerships, Quick Lane Tire & Auto Centers, etc., real-time weather and traffic reports, and information on current fuel prices.

Make hands-free calls with access to their phonebooks and the ability to send and receive text messages.

Have peace of mind that their valuable business assets are safely locked away with an easily installed and gently retractable cable and MasterLock® key set.

F-150 WINS AUTOWEEK AWARD: Preeminent car magazine chooses the new
2009 Ford F-150 as “most significant” vehicle of NAIAS


The editors of AutoWeek Magazine have picked the new 2009 Ford F-150 as the “Most Significant” vehicle of this year’s North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) at their annual Design Forum held in Detroit Jan. 16.

AutoWeek reported: “From the Explorer America [concept]– a unibody-constructed, friendlier sport/utility vehicle – to the Verve, the best-looking small car Ford has built for America in generations, the F-150 is “Most Significant” for what it means not only to the company but to the American ethic. The F-150 is ‘Ford Tough’ – and so was this decision among quite an impressive lineup of products Ford has on display.”

The new 2009 Ford F-150 offers the most capability, most ‘smart’ features and most choice in the full-size pickup market. The new 2009 F-150 is new from the inside and out – from its segment-first features, tough new exterior, more spacious, flexible and refined interior and unparalleled choice of cab styles and trim levels, including a new Platinum series that redefines tough truck luxury. The addition of Platinum brings Ford to a total of 35 unique F-150 configurations.

The new 2009 Ford F-150 expands its capability by adding more usable interior space to the SuperCrew model, a stronger, lighter frame and more standard safety features than previous models.

The F-Series, America’s best-selling truck line for 31 years, turns 60 this year, during which time Ford has built more than 33 million F-Series pickups. Today, Ford has more F-Series pickups on the road with 250,000 miles on them than anyone else in the truck business.

ALL BUSINESS: New 2009 F-150 is the most capable light-duty pickup in the industry

Ford F-150 customers tackle tough jobs when they work and play, and they need a full-size truck that rises to the challenge. The current F-150 is already the most capable truck on the market, but Ford’s truck team drove capability to new levels with the 2009 model.

The improvement starts with the 2009 F-150’s fully boxed frame constructed with hydro-formed and high strength steel side rails. The lightweight frame delivers 10 percent more torsional rigidity, which delivers increased durability and safety. The sturdy chassis also paved the way for the new 2009 F-150 to improve upon the current model’s class-leading towing and hauling capability across all cab configurations.

Complementing the modern frame is a high-tech suite of features that ensures the F-150 is sure-footed and safe in all driving and load conditions. The new F-150 offers segment-first standard AdvanceTrac® with RSC® (Roll Stability Control) and Trailer Sway Control plus available Rearview Camera Assist as well as Integrated Trailer Brake Controller, a segment-first on light-duty pickups.

Inside, the new 2009 F-150 SuperCrew offers more usable space for moving more people and gear thanks to a 6-inch stretch that improves rear seat legroom and cargo capacity. A mechanically articulated second-row seat flips up and out of the way. Combined with a truly flat load floor, the feature gives the new SuperCrew class leading 57.6 cubic feet of space behind the front seats and can accommodate items up to 47.9 inches tall, such as a flat-screen TV that needs to be hauled from the electronics store to home.

OPTIMIZED FOR PERFORMANCE: Trio of 2009 F-150 engines
offers power and better fuel economy


The new F-150 is powered by three modern V-8 engines, mated to either a 4-speed or a new fuel-efficient 6-speed automatic transmission. The engines include:

5.4-liter, 3-valve Triton V-8, which has been optimized for better performance with improved horsepower and torque and is capable of running on E85 (85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline), pure gasoline or any blend in between.

4.6-liter, 3-valve V-8, which is new for F-150. Both the 5.4-liter and 4.6-liter 3-valve V-8’s utilize open valve injection. This unique feature improves the flow of fuel into the combustion chamber, which results in an increase in horsepower during towing and reduced emissions.

4.6-liter, 2-valve V-8, a third V-8 choice in the line-up that delivers more horsepower with the same fuel economy performance as the outgoing truck’s V-6.

This all-V-8 engine lineup delivers a fleet-average 1 mpg improvement in fuel economy versus the outgoing F-Series. Diesel and EcoBoost gas turbo direct injection engines are planned for F-150 in 2010, as well.

Towing and hauling: The new 2009 Ford F-150 will feature class-leading towing and hauling capability made possible by the stronger and lighter frame. All internal components of the smooth-shifting 6-speed transmission have been upgraded to handle the higher torque capacities, including more robust clutch packs, bigger pump and bigger output shaft. The transmission’s hydraulic system was also beefed up to enable improved idle speeds and improved converter clutch duty cycles.
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Old 02-14-2008, 11:35 PM
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Ford knows how to build trucks. The only thing I'd improve upon would be the instrument cluster. I am also interested to see the comparison of the F150 vs Ram in terms of driving dynamics. The Ram has a coil springs in the rear, which should improve ride and handling.

"Diesel and EcoBoost gas turbo direct injection engines are planned for F-150 in 2010, as well."

Very cool that Ford is going to offer a Diesel and Ecoboost engine.

Last edited by Maximized; 02-14-2008 at 11:37 PM.
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Old 02-15-2008, 08:30 AM
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Ford sucked again in design dept.
although 2009 will be a interesting year with the Ram and F-150 fighting with new trucks.
I saw the 09 Ram . it looks better IMO but it reminds me of the new Tundra.
If i was to pick one on looks alone i'd go with a new Sierra.
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Old 02-15-2008, 09:44 AM
  #62  
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i like it.
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Old 05-14-2008, 03:02 PM
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Arrow Ford Recalls Mark LT & Ford F-150

Ford Recalls Over 650,000 Pickups for Brake Hose

DETROIT (Reuters) - Ford Motor Co is recalling over 650,000 of its top-selling F-150 pickups as well as a Lincoln-branded truck because of a problem with the brake hose that could cause the vehicles to lose braking power.

The automaker has recalled 2005 and 2006 model year Ford F-150 and Lincoln Mark LT trucks, according to the recall notice posted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration on its website on Wednesday.

Ford trucks covered by the recall are equipped with 5.4-liter engines. The brake hose on those trucks can detach from an intake manifold, causing the driver to lose the "assist" function that provides additional power to the brakes, according to the safety notice.

The trucks could still be stopped with remaining braking power but it would require drivers to apply "more force to the pedal," Ford spokesman Wes Sherwood said.

He said Ford had received reports of 11 minor accidents but no injuries because of the brake hose defect.

The sweeping recall covers almost 606,000 vehicles in the United States and comes just as Ford is gearing up to launch all-new versions of its F-Series pickup truck line.

U.S. sales of the Ford trucks are down 16 percent this year in a downturn tied to high gasoline prices and a slumping U.S. housing market.

In addition to the trucks covered by the U.S. government recall, there are another 50,000 of the trucks on the road in Canada covered by a similar recall procedure, Ford said.

Ford said customers in the United States and Canada affected by the recall could have brake hoses replaced at Ford dealerships starting in late June.

Ford customers with questions can call 1-800-392-3673 for more information, the automaker said.
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Old 05-14-2008, 09:01 PM
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Damnit. I drive a 2006 F-150 5.4 Triton. ... off to the dealership I'll go...
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Old 05-15-2008, 09:08 PM
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Originally Posted by stright-(paint)balling
Ford sucked again in design dept.
although 2009 will be a interesting year with the Ram and F-150 fighting with new trucks.
I saw the 09 Ram . it looks better IMO but it reminds me of the new Tundra.
If i was to pick one on looks alone i'd go with a new Sierra.
Yep agree, Ride a lot in the 07 150, 2&4 wd..rides great..but like the GMC looks, seats and ride is close...mpg is better in gmc....
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Old 06-20-2008, 10:03 AM
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Follow-Up Test: 2008 Ford F-150 Foose Edition

Goose the Foose
By Mike Schmidt, Vehicle Testing Coordinator
Date posted: 06-19-2008



Here we sit behind the wheel of the 2008 Ford F-150 Foose Edition. With one foot planted on the brake pedal, we drop it into gear and goose the throttle. Somewhere beyond the loud whine of the supercharger we hear a long, drawn-out shush. It's not our high school librarian. These 22-inch tires just don't squeal like we expected.

A glance in the rearview is reassuring. White smoke billows from the wheel openings and now engulfs the truck bed. This exercise doesn't sound as cool as we had hoped, but it gets the job done. We pull around to the front of the building, park in the first available spot and climb out.

Some bystanders shake their heads in disgust and a couple of kids smile as we puff out our chests and strut past them. Our tuxedos reek of rubber as we enter the church. Just then the groom turns and says, "It sure is a good thing we got here early for photos."

Now we understand why Chip Foose and Ford teamed up for the 2008 Ford F-150 Foose Edition. This truck is built for burnouts. And burnouts draw attention. Ford hopes this attention is enough to generate some F-150 sales.

A Familiar Story
Chip Foose is everywhere these days, as this surprisingly young member of the Hot Rod Hall of Fame seems to be everywhere all at once, sketching new hot rods, talking about design or hawking products on TV. It's no wonder that Ford sought him out for a special-edition version of the Ford F-150, because his hot-rod roots and modern design tastes are a perfect fit for what Ford is trying to accomplish here. Of course, this project probably sounded way cooler to the Ford product planners two years ago at the 2006 SEMA Show when it was conceived than it does right now. In the midst of escalating gas prices, you couldn't pick a worse time to sell a pickup with a supercharged 450-horsepower 5.4-liter V8.

Foose puts his own spin on a popular Ford story with his signature hot-rod look. First you start with an F-150 FX2 Sport short bed, then you add shiny upper and lower front grilles, a kit of add-on bodywork, plus a few items embossed with the Foose logo for the interior. Most of all, there are the Foose graphics (he's a guy with a strong graphic sense) — big striped decals that run the length of the truck. It all adds up to just what you'd expect from a hot-rod truck, although its overall visual refinement might make its appearance a little predictable.

The Foose Edition has plenty of hardware to back up the made-for-TV look. A Ford Racing supercharger with a clever integrated intercooler bolts right on to the iron-block 5.4-liter Triton V8, and a Ford Racing cat-back dual-exhaust system improves the overall airflow. The result is 450 hp at 5,200 rpm and 500 pound-feet of torque at 4,200 rpm.

With so much power at hand, some effort has been made to keep the Foose F-150 in touch with the ground. Eibach springs are installed, with coils up front and leaf springs in the rear, and there's a Sachs damper at every corner. Just as you'd expect, Foose-designed forged 22-inch wheels are part of the deal, although their impact is heightened by the massive P275/45R22 Pirelli Scorpion Zero tires. Spin these too frequently and replacement tires will pick your pocket for 250 bucks apiece.

Good Tires Make a Difference
When all is said and done, this Foose has output not unlike its companions in the F-150 special-edition sweepstakes, the 2007 F-150 Harley-Davidson, 2007 Saleen S331 Supercharged Sport Truck and 2007 Roush Performance Stage 3 F-150.

This kind of power has a definite impact on performance. In a straight line this 5,500-pound truck is quick for its size, completing the quarter-mile in 14.7 seconds at 92 mph, quicker by 0.2 second than the 2007 Roush Stage 3 we tested. Shifts are crisp in the Foose, but the widely spaced gear ratios in this old-fashioned four-speed automatic transmission deliver power in peaks and valleys.

This truck has some good stoppers, coming to a halt in a mere 117 feet from 60 mph. By comparison, the Roush Stage 3 requires 134 feet. We attribute much of this stopping power to the massive grip of its Pirellis, but we should also note that brake fade was nonexistent even after as many as seven attempts.

When it comes to turning a corner, the Foose handles well for a truck with a wheelbase of 138.5 inches and an overall length of 224 inches. Its slalom speed of 59.6 mph is faster than the Roush's 57.9 mph. Around the skid pad, the Foose and the Roush match one another with 0.80g of lateral force and they do the job with a far better balance between front and rear grip than the stock F-150.

Showroom Ready
Limited-production trucks like the Foose are built for a couple of reasons. They satisfy the needs of folks with money to burn who are looking for a finished truck capable of blowing the doors off all the wannabes in their neighborhood. (These people tend to spend $1,700 on personalization, much more than buyers of any other truck.) And from a brand perspective, Ford hopes they serve as a catalyst to encourage sales across the model line.

Full-size truck sales are down significantly from 2007 for all manufacturers, and the Ford F-150 in particular has slumped 24 percent in recent months, an indicator of the way the F-150 caters to non-truck people who can own anything they want. Trends in the price of oil suggest a shift toward unibody, fuel-efficient compact trucks may be on the horizon. Suddenly the Honda Ridgeline is looking more compelling to rival manufacturers despite its modest sales numbers, and we've already seen glimmers of what could be the next El Camino from GM's Holden arm. Concept retro versions of the Ford Ranchero and Subaru BRAT can't be far behind.

Ford needs to bring people to the dealership in order to sell trucks. And a truck like the Foose edition looks good on the showroom floor. It even looks good on paper, though you might wince at its $55,200 MSRP. Yet even those thin of wallet are likely to turn their efforts to a less expensive F-150, order parts on the Ford Racing site and modify their own truck. At least this is what Ford wants to happen.

Blowing Smoke
In a time when the Toyota Prius is king and hypermiling is actually a word, the 2008 Ford F-150 Foose Edition is out of place. This truck draws attention to itself with high horsepower and a propensity to victimize rubber. It's not interested in fuel consumption through a sippy cup, but instead prefers a funnel and hose.

Hot-rodders have always been considered part of the counterculture, and this Chip Foose-inspired truck fits that mold particularly well in these eco-conscious times. Unfortunately this truck is destined to be a collector's item as a result, because we don't foresee very many sales.

Nevertheless, the Foose F-150 is exactly what you want from a hot-rod truck. But when the urge to blow a smoky burnout behind the local church comes on, take a look around first. Be sure the pastor isn't standing out back on his cigarette break. Sorry, Reverend.
http://www.edmunds.com/insideline/do...hotopanel..1.*
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Old 10-17-2008, 10:47 AM
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2009 Ford F-150 First Drive

Hauling the Trash (Talk)
By Daniel Pund, Senior Editor, Detroit
Date posted: 10-16-2008


If there's been one upside to the collapse of full-size pickup truck sales this year, it has been the way it has served to exponentially increase the amount of semi-entertaining trash talk spouted by manufacturers in the segment. And Ford Motor Company has led that charge, using the introduction of its substantially improved 2009 Ford F-150 as the club with which to pummel the competition.

Ford has not gone so far as to say that the use of coil springs for the rear suspension is totally girly — but it has come close. This, naturally, is a swipe at the 2009 Dodge Ram, the first full-size pickup to use those newfangled springy things in the modern era. "We don't build coffee shop trucks," sneers George Pipas, Ford's usually mild-mannered sales guru. Oh no, you didn't say that!

Ford has not gone too far as to say explicitly that the Toyota Tundra is wimpy. But it has gleefully shown everyone with a pair of eyeballs that the Toyota's bed gets all kinds of giggly and agitated on Ford's rugged route in Arizona where it tests durability. Further, Ford notes that the skinny bolts that hold the Tundra's leaf springs in place are no match for the thick, manly items used to perform this function in the F-150.

So now, after all the calculated jabs (and several months' delay to allow dealers to unload a big backload of '08 F-150s at enormous discounts), the new, thoroughly revised (and thoroughly tough, manly and unwimpy) 2009 Ford F-150 full-size pickup truck is going on sale as you read this.

And, you know what? It's pretty good.

All V8s! For Now!
Based on our one-day drive on and around Ford's proving grounds in Romeo, Michigan, we can say the 2009 Ford F-150 is a fine entry in the pickup truck market that will grab at least its share of the projected 1.6 million sales in the pickup segment this year. (At 1.6 million units, the pickup market is down nearly a million from its peak in 2004, which should explain some of the sniping and back-biting as everyone squabbles over the scraps.)

First off, Ford gets to say that its entire lineup of 2009 F-150s — from the lowliest work truck with a standard cab to the Lincoln-style Platinum-edition luxury truck — is powered by a V8.

The 4.2-liter V6 bites the dust for '09 and is replaced by last year's midlevel engine — the 4.6-liter V8 with two valves per cylinder. This engine makes 248 horsepower and 294 pound-feet of torque. Of course, we had to specifically ask Ford officials for a drive of the base-model F-150 equipped with this engine. Once they dug one up and we drove it, we found out why it wasn't part of the regular test-drive program. Trying to move 2.5 tons of truck, the base V8 has its work cut out for it, especially with a four-speed automatic transmission (no manual transmission is offered). This engine might not be a V6, but it isn't much of a V8, either.

Step up, my friend, to the 4.6-liter V8 with three valves per cylinder and you get a boost of 44 hp and 26 lb-ft over the base V8. And with two more gears in its automatic transmission, it not only feels a bunch more sprightly than the base truck but also gets slightly better fuel economy (15 mpg city/20 mpg highway, compared to 14 mpg city/19 mpg highway). That's what they call a win-win, right?

The top-of-the-line 5.4-liter V8 gets a bump in power for 2009 as well, as it cranks out 320 hp and 390 lb-ft of torque. Thanks to the new six-speed automatic, this motor also returns improved mileage over last year's 5.4, up to 14 mpg city/20 mpg highway in two-wheel-drive versions of the F-150. Only the Toyota's big, thumpin' 5.7-liter V8 feels substantially more powerful than the Ford Dearborn V8, which at 381 hp, it is. Of course, we haven't yet driven the forthcoming 2009 Chevy Silverado with its 6.2-liter V8 and 400-plus hp, but we imagine that it feels pretty strong, too. Oh, and the new Hemi in the 2009 Dodge Ram 1500 isn't exactly weak either.

Slinky and Butch
Ford says the new 2009 Ford F-150 is the most aerodynamically slippery truck on the market. A SuperCrew 4x2 with a 5.5-foot cargo box has a drag coefficient of 0.403. This relative efficiency in aerodynamic drag (funny how no one wants to talk about frontal area) is what helps the special two-wheel-drive SFE model with its 24-valve 4.6-liter V8 get 15 mpg city/21 mpg highway. Well, that and low-rolling-resistance tires and a super-tall 3.15:1 axle ratio.

This is a neat trick, because Ford is playing up its real-truck credentials as opposed to what it portrays as mere lifestyle truck-ettes from the competition. There's no mistaking the tall, bluff front end of the Ford (derived from that of the old Super Duty pickup) for anything other than a full-on truck-based truck, which is all full up with truckishness. The tall walls of the cargo bed (a familiar feature of the existing truck), along with the slab sides and hard corners of the body make the new F-150 look utterly massive. Even so, the use of high-strength steel in the boxed frame rails helps the new F-150 reduce its weight by about 100 pounds compared to the outgoing model.

Moreover, Ford has stretched the popular SuperCrew configuration by 6 inches in length, providing 57.6 cubic feet of cargo space behind the front seats. Flip up the rear seats and you're greeted with a truly flat load floor. Nice.

Built Ford Fluff
"Nice" also pretty aptly describes the rest of the interior of the new truck, too. If there's one aspect of the American pickup truck that has been improved thanks to the lifestyle interests of all those girly, untrucky image buyers on the way to Home Depot, it's the interior. Ironic, since it's those image buyers who are running away screaming from pickups just as the interiors become nicer.

The F-150's interior isn't a bad place to spend some time. Ford has apparently launched a crusade against noise, vibration and harshness, and it has done a fine job of keeping interior noise to a minimum in the F-150. The payoff is that the lack of noise tends to be perceived as quality. And since this thing feels like a rock (with apologies to Chevy) and steers with an unexpected accuracy, the F-150 is perceived as a quality piece.

And it's not just the highfalutin Platinum edition that's nice, although this model does have a heaping helping of satiny, woody and leathery stuff, plus a thick, laminated "quiet-glass" windshield. The materials both look and feel like quality. And should an image buyer or a regular guy choose, he can have pretty much all the niceties that a Lincoln buyer can have and then some. Sync, Ford's popular hands-free communications and entertainment system, is available, as are voice-activated navigation, a 10-speaker Sony audio system and a reverse camera system, not to mention Sirius Travel Link which (for a fee) will provide weather and traffic data as well as a list of nearby dining establishments and local entertainment listings.

Trucks Nuts
For all this, the 2009 Ford F-150 is not all fluffy comfort-and-convenience interior gadgets, though. For '09 Ford brings exterior and mechanical gadgets, too. There are the now-obligatory bed extenders and cargo system rails for the cargo box, of course. The F-150 also nabbed from the Super Duty the step that slides and folds out of the tailgate, which should be good for getting ladies into the cargo bed. And because Ford has made the walls of the cargo box so high, the new truck has bedside steps that tuck under the fender.

Every F-150 comes with not only electronic stability control but also a trailer sway control system, which uses the brakes to help bring a wagging trailer under control. An integrated trailer-brake controller is also offered.

A matter of some importance (given Ford's taunting of its competition) has been the '09 F-150's ability to tow or haul more than rival trucks. And with a maximum rating of 11,300 pounds and a maximum payload capacity of 3,030 pounds, it does.

Truck Bucks
With three engines, seven trim levels, two driveline configurations, three cab sizes and three bed lengths, there are far too many configurations of 2009 Ford F-150 to even describe each one, much less price them all. But a regular-cab Xl with a base-model V8 and four-speed tranny with only air-conditioning on the options sheet will start at $21,320 (including destination). The high-volume XLT model starts at $25,290. And the Platinum model starts at $41,415.

This wide spread in pricing should suit most truck buyers. In any case, the basis from which all of these models sprout is a good all-around package. And that, the Ford guys tell us as they catch a breath in their persistent trash talk, is why the F-Series has been the best-selling pickup truck since Henry Ford invented the wheel.
http://www.edmunds.com/insideline/do...hotopanel..1.*
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Old 12-05-2008, 01:01 PM
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2009 Ford F-150 Full Test and Video

An Icon at the Crossroads
By Dan Edmunds, Director of Vehicle Testing
Date posted: 12-03-2008


Rolling up to a stoplight in this 2009 Ford F-150 Lariat SuperCrew 4x2, we come to rest next to a high school kid in a jacked-up late-model Ford pickup. The sign that hangs in the rear window says, "For Sale."

Ford is hoping that this kid (or, more likely, his dad) will be selling this older mount in order to trade up to a newer F-150, perhaps a Lariat SuperCrew truck like ours. As recently as a year ago this would have been a safe bet.

But the current reality suggests he's probably downsizing and moving out of the truck market entirely. After all, not everyone who wants to own a pickup truck really needs one. And this market is fast evolving into one of needs rather than wants.

Back to the Core
Ford is under no illusions about this shift in the character and priorities of truck buyers. Its most recent market research shows the general decline in truck sales is most dramatic among casual truck buyers, while the segment of sales devoted to work trucks is populated by "core truckers." And, Ford figures, these are the kind of owners who will once again assert the sales appeal of the F-150.

Still, certain design elements of the all-new 2009 Ford F-150 indicate that the Blue Oval's crystal ball wasn't sufficiently polished to see this development coming when it started the design process some three or four years ago. Many improvements to our 2009 F-150 seem intended for the waning poseur contingent, not Joe the Plumber.

A More Habitable Crew Cab
This crew-cab truck's 144.5-inch wheelbase represents a full 6-inch stretch over 2008, and this allows the enlarged SuperCrew cab to finally live up to its name with 43.5 inches of leg-crossing room in the rear seat, a full 4.5 inches more than last year. And instead of offering only a sliver of cargo space behind the rear seatback, the Ford's rear-seat bottoms fold up and latch against the backrests, revealing a perfectly flat floor with no driveline hump and no jutting seat supports to confound loading.

Compared to the previous F-150, aerodynamic improvements reduce wind noise in the cabin, steering system improvements reduce the levels of road vibration transmitted to the driver and even the engine sounds less thrashy than before.

The overall level of interior fit and finish is also much improved. Center stack controls now feature convenient knobs for the audio and climate control systems. There's Microsoft Sync, inputs for USB and iPod, and Bluetooth even comes gratis. The $795 Lariat Plus package brings a rearview camera and an in-dash six-disc CD changer.

As far as style goes, the 2009 Ford F-150 expresses the tough-truck theme that Ford loves, but it's still a tad over the top for us, especially in Lariat trim. Our biggest interior complaint is actually related to the driving position, as only Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps has arms long enough to comfortably reach the non-telescopic steering wheel, and the power-adjustable pedals don't make much of a difference in improving this.

Spring Theory
Of course a half-foot of extra wheelbase will improve the highway ride of any truck, but this stretch is equally important because it affords room to use rear springs that are 6 inches longer, a strategy used to great effect for the 2008 Ford F-450.

First, a longer leaf pack allows a softer initial spring rate for ride comfort when the bed is unloaded, and yet still provides the beef to accommodate a decent payload. And to a lesser extent, the greater span between the spring eyes also reduces unwanted toe changes in the alignment of the rear wheels.

This combination of a stretched wheelbase and longer leaf springs works very well when you compare this truck's ride quality with a 2008 F-150, but we would have been a lot more impressed if we hadn't recently sampled the 2009 Dodge Ram 1500 and its five-link rear axle with coil springs. There's still friction between the leaves in the Ford's suspension, so an unloaded 2009 F-150 inevitably feels a bit more nervous than a Ram when one rear wheel encounters a bump, especially in corners.

The longer wheelbase also exacts a price in maneuverability. The SuperCrew's overall length of 231.7 inches — some 7.9 inches longer than 2008 — exceeds all other trucks of this configuration, and it swells the turning radius from 45.1 to 47 feet. In comparison, the corresponding Tundra turns in 44 feet. As a result, U-turn attempts in this F-150 usually turn into three-point turns.

Trucks on Course
None of this puts the 2009 Ford F-150 at a disadvantage when it comes to speed, however, as the F-150 slaloms the cones at 56.5 mph and grips the skid pad at 0.72g — about average for a full-size pickup.

Thanks to vented disc brakes at every corner, electronic stability control is standard, and the system features software algorithms that will apply selected brakes to mitigate rollover situations and trailer sway. The F-150's brakes stop the big truck from 60 mph in just 128 feet — near the top of its class.

Jabbing the throttle, however, produces below-average acceleration. Our 2009 F-150 4x2 takes 7.8 seconds (7.5 seconds with 1 foot of rollout like on a drag strip) to reach 60 mph and it covers the quarter-mile in 15.8 seconds at 88 mph. These times lag behind our test results for the Ram, Silverado, Titan and Tundra pickups, and all of those trucks were 4x4 variants that are heavier than this 4x2 F-150.

Engine and Transmission
This performance gap shouldn't be surprising, as the F-150's 5.4-liter Triton V8 is little changed from the SOHC three-valve engine sold in the last generation pickup.

The 5.4-liter V8's horsepower has been nudged to 310 horsepower at 5,000 rpm from the former 300-hp mark, while torque slumps to 360 pound-feet at 3,500 revs from 365 lb-ft. Both these figures are less than the power output of the top-level V8s offered by the F-150's competitors. Sure this Ford V8 will make some more power and torque on E85 fuel (320 hp and 390 lb-ft, respectively), but since few of us can buy the stuff readily, we're not attaching much significance to it.

The new six-speed automatic transmission certainly helps fuel consumption, as a short-ratio 1st gear gets the 2009 F-150 moving from rest more easily and two overdrive gears keep the revs down low while cruising for good fuel economy. Drivability is very good, especially with the tow-haul mode engaged, but many of us feel that the large gap between 1st and 2nd gear indicates that 1st gear is now a bit too short.

Even so, EPA-rated fuel economy rises from the 13 mpg city/18 mpg highway recorded by the previous F-150 with its four-speed transmission to 14 mpg city/20 mpg highway with the new gearbox. For the record, fuel economy with E85 ethanol is rated at 10 mpg city/14 mpg highway.

Numbers Game
The 2009 Ford F-150's impressive fuel-economy ratings were earned by the 5.4-liter V8 paired with the standard 3.15:1 axle ratio, but this truck's Lariat trim includes a shorter 3.55:1 rear end.

The EPA doesn't require re-certification for each axle ratio, so this truck has an impressive EPA rating, but the 3.55 ratio accounts for our middling 14.4-mpg observed fuel economy. The axle ratio's benefit lies in our truck's 9,800-pound tow rating instead of the 8,500-pound limit that comes with the 3.15 rear end.

So how does Ford get to a class-leading 11,300-pound tow rating with the weakest V8 in the field? It's because the F-150 is available with yet another rear axle ratio, of course — a 3.73:1 unit. Expect a further drop in observed fuel consumption, no matter what the window sticker reads.

Yeah, we know. We're already making plans for an in-depth tow test early next year.

Looking Forward
If this truck had a more modern V8 with dual overhead cams, variable valve timing and perhaps direct injection, there would be enough horsepower, torque and fuel economy to really leverage the six transmission ratios. The result would be the same spread of performance with fewer optional axle ratios.

Maybe the answer will come from a diesel. Pictures have already surfaced of a 2010 Ford F-150 with a 4.4-liter clean diesel V8 codeveloped with Land Rover. It should make considerably more torque (and perhaps even a bit more horsepower), than the 5.4-liter V8 tested here.

In the meantime, our 2009 Ford F-150 Lariat 4x2 is a better truck than the outgoing model, hands down. The new SuperCrew cab is notably larger inside, and the whole package is more comfortable, quieter and more refined — all the things casual truck buyers go for. And our example has been kitted with a respectable amount of equipment and still prices out at a reasonable $39,340.

For the workhorse set, the new six-speed automatic expands the performance envelope in both hauling and fuel economy. But Ford is merely catching up its competitors in this respect, and the Triton 5.4 V8 is keeping the company from making the best of its overall truck package.

Whichever way the pickup market goes from here, the F-150 needs an efficient new engine, a signature effort to complete the package. Maybe if the diesel makes its appearance in 2010 as forecasted, Ford will really have something for the "core truckers" of America.
http://www.edmunds.com/insideline/do...hotopanel..3.*
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Old 12-05-2008, 05:08 PM
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wtf does Edmunds test the same car every few months
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Old 01-21-2009, 08:12 AM
  #70  
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http://www.leftlanenews.com/ford-f-1...-for-2011.html

Ford just launched an all-new F-150 for the 2009 model year, but more big changes are on the way for the popular pickup. Starting in 2010 for the 2011 model year, the F-150 is rumored to be seeing a complete reshuffling of its powertrain offerings, including two all-new engines.

According to PickupTrucks.com, Ford will be replacing the F-150’s base 4.6L V8 with an all-new 5.0L unit. Internally known as ‘coyote’, the new V8 will feature four-valves per cylinder and a massive jump in power over the current 4.6L. Whereas the current 4.6L produces 248 horsepower and 294 lb-ft of torque in base-guise, the new engine will deliver 400 horsepower and 400 lb-ft of torque – all while returning fuel economy figures comparable to the truck’s current 5.4L V8.

The 5.0L will also replace the mid-level three-valve 4.6L V8.

In a bit of a twist for the truck segment, the F-150’s top 5.4L V8 engine option will be replaced by Ford’s new EcoBoost 3.5L V6. Although die-hard truck fans will likely take issue with a V6 displacing the V8, it’s hard to argue with the powerplant’s numbers. The six-cylinder will match the 5.0L’s power figures – with torque likely to be above the 400 lb-ft mark – but will return at least 23 mpg on the highway, 2 mpg better than the most fuel efficient F-150 offered today.

The truck’s 6.2L V8 will be sticking around, but will only be used in Raptor and Super Duty models.

Expect the new powertrain offerings to hit the market in late 2010.
I think they got the base and premium's mixed up but those sound good. About time too.
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Old 01-21-2009, 08:17 AM
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400 ft-lbs from a V6?
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Old 01-21-2009, 06:17 PM
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Ford continues to do great stuff. Hopefully the consumers will take notice of EcoBoost, the Fusion Hybrid, etc.
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Old 01-22-2009, 01:25 AM
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Ford just launched an all-new F-150 for the 2009 model year, but more big changes are on the way for the popular pickup. Starting in 2010 for the 2011 model year, the F-150 is rumored to be seeing a complete reshuffling of its powertrain offerings, including two all-new engines.

According to PickupTrucks.com, Ford will be replacing the F-150’s base 4.6L V8 with an all-new 5.0L unit. Internally known as ‘coyote’, the new V8 will feature four-valves per cylinder and a massive jump in power over the current 4.6L. Whereas the current 4.6L produces 248 horsepower and 294 lb-ft of torque in base-guise, the new engine will deliver 400 horsepower and 400 lb-ft of torque – all while returning fuel economy figures comparable to the truck’s current 5.4L V8.

The 5.0L will also replace the mid-level three-valve 4.6L V8.

In a bit of a twist for the truck segment, the F-150’s top 5.4L V8 engine option will be replaced by Ford’s new EcoBoost 3.5L V6. Although die-hard truck fans will likely take issue with a V6 displacing the V8, it’s hard to argue with the powerplant’s numbers. The six-cylinder will match the 5.0L’s power figures – with torque likely to be above the 400 lb-ft mark – but will return at least 23 mpg on the highway, 2 mpg better than the most fuel efficient F-150 offered today.
400HP, 400 ft. lbs. torque AND 23 MPG?!?! Holy fawk!!!!
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Old 01-22-2009, 08:25 AM
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now they need to deliver
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Old 01-22-2009, 05:44 PM
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^ They have so far... I have no doubt their future products will be a cut above what they've putout in the past.
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Old 01-22-2009, 06:09 PM
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^you can't say that about a ALL NEW ford engine. Always problems off the bat. I have my eye on the new raptor but it wont get the new engine until a year later.
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Old 01-24-2009, 03:39 PM
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Meh, if I was in the market for a big truck I'd go with a Tundra or Titan myself...
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Old 01-24-2009, 06:21 PM
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Originally Posted by majin ssj eric View Post
Meh, if I was in the market for a big truck I'd go with a Tundra or Titan myself...
The true Titan ending this year or 2010 then it will be a rebadged Ram. much like a GMC a rebadged Chevy.
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Old 01-24-2009, 06:23 PM
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on related note: did anyone hear about the SHO Tarsus is coming back.
a twin turbo 2010 Ford Tarsus SHO option gonna be offered. toward the last quarter of this year. they are saying around 335 hp.
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Old 08-24-2009, 03:15 PM
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2010 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor First Drive and Video

If Liking This Truck Is Wrong, We Don't Want To Be Right
By Jason Kavanagh, Engineering Editor
Date posted: 08-23-2009


Ford SVT engineer Hether Fedullo is effusive. She's explaining to us that the oil in the 2010 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor's dampers is a proprietary concoction that resists high temperatures so well that it endured the entire Baja 1000 without succumbing to heat-induced fade. This magic juice alone costs more than an entire conventional damper, and the Raptor has three levels of damping that varies according to shock position.

We must not be driving fast enough, then. Fedullo is wearing a helmet, yet she's managing to conduct this technical seminar from the passenger seat of the 2010 F-150 SVT Raptor as we rocket over a rock-strewn desert with knee-high whoops at a speed that would be illegal on any public highway.

This Raptor, then, is clearly a different kind of street-legal pickup truck.

A New Kind of Truck
Prior to the project receiving the green light, the idea of a high-speed off-road truck in the style of a Baja pre-runner was certainly different enough to strike fear into the hearts of certain risk-averse corporate wonks at Ford. Change can be intimidating.

After all, the 2010 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor is not intended to be a typical off-road package; it is meant to offer an unprecedented level of capability without compromising on-road manners. The Raptor is supposed to be a comprehensive rethink of what a pickup can do.

Executing the Raptor's finer points entailed some unconventional approaches by the SVT team. They set up shop in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park in Southern California, the largest park of its kind in the continental U.S. and ground zero for desert racing, then built a portable shock dyno and got to work.

SVT engineers devised a 62-mile loop here to hone the Raptor's off-road chops, and drove the truck on it for 1,000 miles as one of many durability tests.

Travel, Lots of It
High speed in the desert demands more suspension travel than the base F-150 offers, yet the SVT team could not relocate the existing suspension pickup points of the chassis to get it. If you remember geometry class, however, you know that adding track width will increase suspension travel.

A beefier rear axle with a shorter 4.10:1 axle ratio, new upper control arms and special squeeze-cast aluminum lower front control arms increase the Raptor's track width by 7 inches, resulting in 11.2 inches of front suspension travel and 12.1 inches at the rear. The Raptor sports so much track width that NHTSA essentially classes it as a dually and requires it to wear auxiliary lighting.

All of the bodywork forward of the A-pillars is unique to the Raptor. Whether in person or in photos, the Raptor looks so tough it's as if Clint Eastwood is glaring at you. Everything is functional. The 35-inch BFGoodrich All-Terrain tires are covered by the meanest-looking fender flares since Robby Gordon's Hummer H2 Paris-Dakar racer. The hood and fender vents are real. Beefy steel skid plates protect the underbody. Even the running boards double as protection from rocks spraying off the front tires.

Damping, Lots of It
Meeting the performance targets for the truck hinged on effective damping, and as development progressed, SVT realized that the traditional OEM damper supplier with which it was working wasn't going to cut it. Jamal Hadeemi, SVT chief engineer and a former race engineer for a Baja Trophy Truck, recalls, "I just went on the Internet and started researching alternatives."

From this grew a partnership with Fox Racing Shox, a California-based manufacturer of dampers for motocross bikes, off-road racing vehicles and even military applications. This odd-couple pairing proved instrumental to the Raptor's success. Fox brought high-end off-road motorsports know-how to Ford's stringent OEM qualification tests for durability and the difficult performance parameters for the Raptor project.

A conventional damper that varies damping force based only on the speed of its internal guts can be dialed in for on- or off-road terrain, but it struggles when tasked with the mission to excel at both. Fox's internal bypass feature — said to be patented — allows damping force to vary based on damper stroke.

As such, the Fox dampers allow a compliant ride around town when only a small portion of the suspension's travel is exercised. Explore the full range of travel by pounding it over some whoops off-road and the dampers progressively firm up to prevent the suspension from bottoming.

Driving, Lots of It
The result is that the Raptor is a revelation off-road. Terrain that would break normal pickups is shrugged off with ease. Rocks, whoops and ruts don't faze it. And the faster you go, the more capable it feels. Powersliding the Raptor through a desert wash, the steering is surprisingly accurate and the brake pedal firm and responsive. You feel invincible in the Raptor.

On the road, the Raptor rides and handles like a well-sorted conventional pickup. It's plush, yet not floaty or pitchy, and body control during cornering is surprisingly good for a tall, 5,863-pound pickup. Those giant tires that you expect to make a deafening roar at speed? Absolutely silent.

Put simply, the Raptor could be enslaved to life as a daily driver on public roads and the owner would be none the wiser to the truck's towering capability. The cabin offers supportive seats and a well-sculpted steering wheel complete with a useful on-center stripe. At the base of the center console is a handy row of four powered and fused switches to control anything from aftermarket lights to a blender.

Tasteless orange interior accents and silly exterior mud graphics are, thankfully, optional.

Powertrain
You'll notice we haven't yet mentioned the powertrain. That's because the chassis is really the Raptor's main event, and the carryover 310-horsepower 5.4-liter three-valve V8 is simply overworked when lashed into the tall and heavy Raptor. Worse yet, the six-speed autobox constantly hunts for gears in a desperate attempt to keep fuel consumption at bay. It's annoying at best.

There's an Off-Road mode that remaps the shift schedule — along with the throttle, ABS and stability control calibrations — but it's still not quite enough to elevate the 5.4-liter past merely adequate. The optional 400-hp 6.2-liter V8, scheduled to arrive in dealers this winter, promises to address this shortcoming.

Easy Decision
All Raptors have the 4x4 Super Cab configuration and are rated to tow 6,000 pounds and offer a 1,000-pound payload capacity. With hill-descent control and an electronically locking rear differential, there's little the Raptor can't do and few places it won't go.

Base price of the 2010 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor with the 5.4-liter V8 is $38,995 including destination ($41,995 for 6.2-liter versions), which is roughly $2,500 more than a comparable base F-150 4x4 Super Cab. That's a whole lot of extra capability for not much more dough.

Or you can justify the Raptor another way. Green is in, and the Raptor allows us to explore all those far-flung places we're preserving without needing to pave them first. Share this logic with the Prius weenie that's giving you the stink eye and watch his head explode.
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