2018 Ford F-150 Preview

Christian Wardlaw | Jan 09, 2017
FAST FACTS
  • Minor styling changes, especially up front
  • New aluminum wheel designs
  • Expanded interior colors for selected models
  • New standard 3.3-liter V6 engine
  • More powerful V8 engine with 10-speed automatic
  • New 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 engine option with 10-speed auto
  • New 3.0-liter Power Stroke turbo-diesel engine option with, you guessed it, a 10-speed automatic
  • More driver assistance and collision avoidance systems
  • Upgraded Sync 3 infotainment with new optional premium audio system
  • Built in Michigan and Missouri
  • On sale in fall of 2017

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2018 Ford F-150 front quarter right photo

Introduction

Ford is relentless. The F-150 pickup truck, the best-selling vehicle in America, the truck that went with an aluminum body and available turbocharged engines with a complete redesign in 2015, the truck that just launched in fearsome Raptor guise, gets a significant update for 2018 that is sure to cement its status as the best half-ton rig you can buy.

Exterior Features

Ford updates the F-150’s front and rear styling for 2018, installing new headlights, taillights, bumpers, grilles, and a more sculptural tailgate with “F-150” boldly stamped into the aluminum. Six new aluminum wheel designs debut, too, ranging in size from 17 inches to 22 inches in diameter.

The goal is to visually widen the truck, giving it a more planted stance, while providing greater differentiation between the various trim levels. For example, the F-150 Lariat with the Sport Package features body-color grille bars. Special tailgate appliques set the luxury-themed King Ranch, Platinum and Limited models apart.

Interior Features

Inside, Ford leaves the F-150 pretty much alone. The XLT Sport and Lariat Sport models are offered with new carbon fiber dashboard trim, and the upscale versions get new leather treatments called Kingsville (King Ranch), Dark Marsala (Platinum), and Navy Pier (Limited).

Optional Features

Ford did not announce any changes to the 2018 F-150 pickup’s optional equipment list, except as described in the sections that follow.

Under the Hood

While the 2018 F-150 looks similar to the existing truck inside and out, there are big changes under the pickup’s imposing hood.

Ford drops the standard 3.5-liter V6 engine in favor of a new direct-injected 3.3-liter V6. Ford says it will make just as much horsepower and torque as the power plant it replaces, which generated 282 ponies and 253 lb.-ft. If that’s not enough oomph, consider upgrading from that engine with an enhanced 5.0-liter V8 engine that Ford says is more powerful for 2018, and is now paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission.

Three additional engine options are available, all featuring turbocharging. An all-new, next-generation, 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 engine with dual port and direct injection technology is the most affordable selection, and compared to the engine it has replaced it delivers greater power output, improved fuel efficiency, and enhanced durability, according to Ford. This engine is bolted to a 10-speed automatic transmission.

Ford continues to offer two differently tuned versions of its turbocharged 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 engine, each working in concert with a 10-speed automatic transmission. The high-output motor is reserved for the off-road-ready F-150 Raptor.

Finally, Ford delivers the turbo-diesel engine long-rumored to become an option for the F-150. The new 3.0-liter Power Stroke V6 engine drives the F-150’s rear wheels or all four wheels through a 10-speed automatic transmission. Official power output figures will be available closer to the truck’s arrival in showrooms.

Automatic engine start/stop is used across the entire engine range in a bid to boost fuel economy. The 2018 Ford F-150 might just prove to be the most efficient F-Series in history, and Ford says it will also supply more towing capacity than any F-150 in history. Ford also claims segment leading payload capacity for its half-ton truck.

See? Relentless.

Safety

While Ford invested a ton of effort in upgrading the F-150’s engines, it didn’t forget to keep its popular pickup technologically up-to-date.

In terms of safety equipment, the new F-150 is now offered with a new adaptive cruise control system with stop-and-go capability. Also, a forward collision warning system with pedestrian detection capability and automatic emergency braking is now available.

Technology

In addition to driver assistance and collision avoidance systems, the new F-150’s Sync 3 infotainment system now offers a 4G LTE Wi-Fi internet hotspot connection that supports up to 10 devices. You pay the cost of service, and you can access the internet from just about anywhere.

Music sounds better inside of the F-150, too, thanks to the available Harman-sourced B&O Play premium audio system, complete with 10 speakers. Additionally, the updated F-150 offers Sync Connect with a Ford Pass smartphone app that provides remote access to the truck’s locks, remote vehicle starting, and a vehicle location service.

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