2017 Ford F-Series Super Duty Preview
By Christian Wardlaw, September 29, 2015
- New steel frame with an aluminum body
- More horsepower and torque from diesel V-8 engine
- Upgraded driveline, axle, braking, and suspension components
- Ford promises “highest ever” Super Duty ratings for payload and towing
- New safety, infotainment, convenience, and towing technologies
Don’t get too excited. Ford did reveal photos and details of the redesigned 2017 F-Series Super Duty, but specifications remain a mystery. We don’t know what the horsepower, torque, payload, or tow ratings are, and all Ford will say is that “Super Duty customers will be able to tow and haul more than ever before.”
To be built in Kentucky, the 2017 Ford Super Duty goes on sale late in 2016. It will be available in Regular Cab, SuperCab, and Crew Cab styles decked out with XL, XLT, Lariat, King Ranch, or Platinum trim.
Constructed of high-strength, military-grade aluminum, the new F-Series Super Duty’s body is more dent- and ding-resistant than the previous truck, and Ford reminds buyers that aluminum “is not subject to red rust corrosion.”
Using aluminum for the truck’s body also contributes to a weight reduction of up to 350 lbs. Why not more? Ford used the aluminum body’s weight savings as an opportunity to upgrade the heavy-duty components that enable greater towing and hauling capabilities.
All three of the cab styles are longer than before, providing more interior room for people and cargo that needs to stay dry and secure. In fact, the SuperCab and Crew Cab models have flat second-row floors that make it easier to slide large objects into the truck.
As you would expect given the depth and breadth of the current Super Duty lineup, the new truck will be available with a long list of upgrades. Most of those confirmed by Ford are associated with technologies related to towing, safety, and infotainment, and are discussed below.
Additionally, the new Super Duty will be available with Ford’s BoxLink system of metal brackets and custom cleats for the cargo bed, as well as remote tailgate locking, unlocking, and opening. The tailgate is designed to drop slowly and softly into position. Quad-beam LED headlights, LED cargo box lighting, and LED spotlights will also be available, the latter apparently powerful enough to illuminate a work site or campsite.
Under the Hood
The 2017 F-Series Super Duty sits on a new, fully-boxed frame composed of 95% high-strength steel. Ford says it is up to 24 times stiffer than the previous truck’s frame.
As this preview is written, powertrain details are limited. A 6.2-liter V-8 engine will be available, paired with a new “TorqShift-G” transmission in F-250 models. A 6.8-liter V-10 engine will be offered for chassis cab models sold to commercial entities.
A 6.7-liter diesel V-8 is optional. Known as the PowerStroke Diesel, Ford says it is upgraded to provide “the highest combination of horsepower and torque ever.” A 6-speed automatic transmission will be bolted to the diesel engine.
In addition to diesel engine upgrades, Ford has also strengthened the Super Duty’s 4-wheel-drive system, driveline, axles, springs, suspension, and towing equipment. New adaptive steering reduces the amount of steering input required at low speeds, and also reduces sensitivity to steering input at higher speeds, Ford says.
Among the Super Duty’s new safety technologies, a blind-spot information system debuts, designed to take into account trailer length when the truck is towing. A lane-departure warning system will also be available, warning the driver with a simulated rumble-strip sensation through the steering wheel.
Adaptive cruise control with collision warning and brake support debuts, too, but this does not include an automatic emergency braking system. Rather, brake support prepares the braking system for maximum braking power when the driver steps on the brakes, and if the collision-warning system has detected that a crash might occur.
You want cameras? The 2017 F-Series Super Duty has your cameras, right here. As many as seven different cameras are aboard this pickup truck, and Ford says they will make towing easier and more efficient than ever. They deliver a 360-degree, top-down view of the truck and its surroundings, as well as a trailer reverse guidance coaching system. Separately, a Super Duty owner can attach a trailer camera to a trailer for easier reversing. There’s even a coaching feature that can warn a driver of jack-knife conditions while towing.
Ford has also announced an in-cab trailer tire-pressure monitoring system, and the new Super Duty gets the automaker’s Sync 3 infotainment system with a touch-screen interface that looks and operates much like a smartphone screen. Ford promises faster response with Sync 3, as well as conversational voice-recognition technology.