By on September 19, 2008

OK, I was a little pissed that I missed buying www.thetruthabouttrucks.com when I set up shop as TTAC. Ford scarfed the url, and they’ve done not much with it. But today I read that Ford analyst George “No Pictures Please” Pipas is using the TTAT tagline for his presentation on the new F-150. As I have a subconscious stimulus – response pattern for Powerpoint-style pdf docs that induces something roughly akin to total body catalepsy, I’ll leave it to our Best and Brightest to play “spot the spin.” My takeway: Ford research reveals that 38 percent of pickup truck buyers either are or are considering leaving the genre. Oh dear. Anyway, with F-150 models ranging from $21,320 (good luck finding a stripper) to $44,860 (what are you nuts?) and a lot of standard kit vs, the competition, Ford can legitimately claim to offer “the most pickup for the money.” You know; if you discount used. Or discounts. And Ford’s going to hype the Hell out of its SFE (Superior Fuel Economy) F-150, which gets 15/21. Is that enough to swim upstream? Doubtful. To paraphrase ELO, the best FoMoCo can do is to hold on tight to their share.

Ford F-150 PR presentation here

Get the latest TTAC e-Newsletter!

30 Comments on “Ford Reveals F-150: The Truth About Trucks?...”


  • avatar
    ppellico

    RF
    I think holding on to your share is really pretty good, if you can.
    The days of the high school, young and I wanna be a cowboy/gal are over for the most part.
    So I think the truch buyers of today and tomorrow are now true truckers.

    Never having been a real working guy, will a bit better mpg really make a difference?
    Will a construction/agriculture hand who loves his GMC switch to a Ford for extra hwy mpg?

    And the pricing is pretty damn nice!

  • avatar
    Dr Lemming

    At this point I would think that Ford is more concerned about keeping on board its existing customer base than conquest sales from GMC. So far it sounds like Ford is making incremental steps to improve the fuel economy of big trucks. Is that enough? I suspect not. It’s too bad they nixed the F-100 downsize; that could have given them a meaningful competitive advantage.

  • avatar
    carguy

    Those sticker prices are the stuff of pure fantasy.

  • avatar
    nudave

    Looks to me like the same old shit with a chromed livestock gate for a grill.

    Just what Bubba Dubya needs when he gets back home next January.

  • avatar
    Orian

    For a fleet owner those mileage figures would hold a lot of sway – that’s actually a decent figure for a work horse.

    I hate the new grill – that thing is hideous and looks cheap as hell.

  • avatar
    Orangutan

    I’m not seeing how it really improves the mileage considering the non-“SFE” model achieves 15/20. All they can squeeze out is an extra mile a gallon on the highway? Chevy will get the same mileage out of their larger 5.3 V8 in “XFE” form.

  • avatar
    shaker

    Cartoonishly large grille?

    Check.

    Prius-driver head crushing bumper height?

    Check

    One more MPG?

    Check.

    Mission Accomplished.

  • avatar
    jpc0067

    How long before Ford sues you for cybersquatting the TTAC domain?

  • avatar
    NickR

    There is tolerable garish and hideous garish. The new Ram is the former, the new Ford is the latter.

    good luck finding a stripper

    I know a great pla…oh, that’s not what you meant

  • avatar
    kericf

    Of all the domestics I have a soft spot for Ford. The cars I have owned have performed well enough in my opinion for what I paid for them.

    This F-150, is the ugliest version yet. I get it is supposed to bridge the gap between the super duty, but holy crap is that hideous. The new Ram is a stunner sitting next to this thing.

  • avatar
    BostonTeaParty

    This truck actually shows us more of how Ford is in deeper doo-doo than we imagine. The new design if you can call it that is basically a new front clip with everything else carried over. Its a facelift of a design that is years old. If they can’t pretty up their cash cow, even in a diminishing market, doesnt that say more about the state the company is in? At least the Ram was given a good going over even if the design is debatable. The same can be said of the “new” mustang too.

  • avatar
    AG

    My first thought was “what’s that Tundra doing with a Ford logo on it?”

  • avatar
    86er

    That photo is of the “Platinum” trim level, above the Lariat and meant to replace the ill-advised Mark LT. It will be the only trim level with that over-the-top faux chrome grille.

    Contrary to what BostonTeaParty has said, this is not merely a facelift but a heavy MCE with interior revisions and many under the skin improvements (where it really counts with trucks). Whenever RobertSD gets here I’m sure he can provide technical details.

    I agree with AG, though; half-ton trucks are getting way too big and silly. Ironically, the Ram, which started it all, has now come out with a subdued version of the Big Rig style and I hope other manufacturers follow with a little more minimalism of their own.

  • avatar
    RogerB34

    Dubya was given a 2001 Ford F250 with Bi-Phase Technologies liquid propane fuel injection system. He is known for VIP trips around the ranch. Putin and family one. Accused of being a windshield cowboy. Makes more sense than Reagan riding a horse. Nancy P drives a PC Prius. The market for non work purpose large PU’s will shrink. Ford will adapt.

  • avatar
    Orangutan

    86er: That’s not a Platinum model, at least according to Ford’s photography. Take a look at the F-150 website and click the “models” button.

    http://www.fordvehicles.com/2009f150/

    The Platinum actually uses a dark chrome mesh grille with a single horizontal slat in the middle instead of the Mach3 razorblade design. The XL, STX, and FX4 have black plastic Mach3 grilles while the XLT uses the all-chrome, all-shaving design. The Lariat and King Ranch use a two-blade design with recessed chrome mesh.

    According to FreeP (I know), the SFE package will only be available on XL and XLT models.

    http://www.freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080919/BUSINESS01/809190351

    “The SFE package, meanwhile, is available only on the 4×2 versions of the XL and XLT models. The SFE package will be a no-cost option on the XLT SuperCrew pickups with the chrome package, but it will cost $1,095 when ordered on XL SuperCrew pickups with the décor package.”

    In one of their photos they show what seems to be this pickup and describe it as an XLT.

  • avatar
    tdoyle

    Even though the new F150 isn’t much more than a new front end, trim levels and new tailights and interior pieces, (underneath really hasn’t changed THAT much) I think it really goes to show how superior the 2004 F150 was when it first arrived in late 2003.

    My 2005 R/C V6 5-speed 2WD does a superior job with everything I ask it to do and it gets decent mileage (over 20) as well at 80+mph daily commutes too.

  • avatar
    yankinwaoz

    I hope that Ford fixed the seating in the F150’s. My best friend has one (2002 model). We are both 6-3 and neither of us can see out the windscreen without having to remove the visors. The seats are too high, so our eyeballs are right about the top of the screen. Drives us nuts. It’s like driving while sitting on a stack of phone books.

    So Ford… either lower the seat 5 inches or raise the windscreen.

  • avatar
    Mark MacInnis

    Looks like it was designed by Rubbermaid for the “Little Tikes” line of toys….I think it actually achieves the dubious goal of making the Ranger look like automotive sculpture in comparison….

  • avatar
    ppellico

    You are all nuts.
    This is not a truck that is supposed to look nice.
    That’s the whole problem in the recent past.
    They started designing trucks for all you fake, pretend wannabe truckers.
    Now, finally, they are back with a design only the everyday hard working crews need.
    They don’t give a damn about pretty.
    They want hard body, heavy duty trucks.
    Even ugly is good.
    If you want the girly, I am a very pretty and good looking cowboy/cowgirl in a truck…get the old versions.

  • avatar
    ihatetrees

    Anyway, with F-150 models ranging from $21,320 (good luck finding a stripper) to $44,860 (what are you nuts?) and a lot of standard kit vs, the competition, Ford can legitimately claim to offer “the most pickup for the money.”

    Mostly true. But why you can’t get a V8 with 3 pedals unless you buy a Ram? Are Ram’s customer’s demographic that much different than Ford’s/GM’s?

  • avatar
    Liger

    In the brochure you can get a V8 RAM with a manual transmission (HEMI excluded). But, good luck EVER finding a manual transmission RAM on the lot of a Dodge dealership. They’re just not ordered, nobody ever buys them. I worked at a big Dodge dealership for 4 years, and saw almost no manual transmission RAM’s. And those were stripper V6 models.

  • avatar
    P71_CrownVic

    “You are all nuts.
    This is not a truck that is supposed to look nice.
    That’s the whole problem in the recent past.
    They started designing trucks for all you fake, pretend wannabe truckers.
    Now, finally, they are back with a design only the everyday hard working crews need.
    They don’t give a damn about pretty.
    They want hard body, heavy duty trucks.
    Even ugly is good.
    If you want the girly, I am a very pretty and good looking cowboy/cowgirl in a truck…get the old versions.”

    Do everyday people NEED an F-150 platnium? or SYNC?

    No.

    ————

    Anyway, I think this F-150 has some MAJOR problems.

    1. It is too damn big. You shouldn’t need stairs to access the bed. There is no reason why a truck needs to be that big.

    2. 3000+ pound bed capacity? This a 1/2 tone right? Has Ford forgotten they make a F-250, F-350, and F-450?

    3. It is Ugly. The new Ram looks MUCH better

    4. The interior is an ergonomic nightmare. All of those buttons…that has to be safe.

    5. The SFE model uses the same amount of gas as the GM XFE Silverado with the 5.3. So with the GM you have a 15% bigger engine that uses the same amount of gas as the (smaller) boat anchor 4.6 from Ford.

  • avatar
    gman37

    If your Adjustable Rate Mortgage is not affordable anymore, you could always buy a new F-150 and live in it. Pretty soon the interior space will be listed in square feet.

  • avatar
    86er

    @ Orangutan:

    You’re right, those grilles have changed since the unveil. The XLT grille is all too busy, while the higher trim levels are still gaudy but a little easier on the eyes.

    That’s too bad. XLT must be their top-selling trim level.

  • avatar
    davey49

    ppellico- I do remember a quite attractive young girl being really excited about her ’98 F150. She drove it from Texas to upstate NY to go to school.
    There are worse customer bases than pretty cowgirls.

    I guess we’ll find out if the experiment by Dodge with the new mellow Ram beats the old fashioned “bigger numbers are better” salesmanship by Ford.

  • avatar
    RedStapler

    The 3 pedal V6 1/2 tons are out there. Try a dealer that does a lot of fleet business.

    I have a cousin who picked up a Ram few years back when they were having their overproduction fire sale of 2006.

    Even a lot of the working folks and vocational users are evaluating their need for a full size vehicle after getting burnt by the recent run up of fuel costs. Some companies now use a mix of smaller wagon vehicles like a Fit or xB, leaving the 1/2 ton+ parked unless they need to bring a bunch of tools & materials.

  • avatar
    ppellico

    davey49
    If I were Ford and the other Big 1.5, I most likely would have built as many as anybody would buy.
    That’s really good business.
    But keep the R&D hot in car development.

    The public has a short concentration period.
    Shorter than my window of opportunity when my wife drinks…about ten minutes.

    But in the beginning…trucks built their base loyalties by being trucks…not decorative 50K for drive to the country club.

    I knew we had trouble when Ford started bragging about its LEXUS interiors.
    Oh, My God! NO! Please don’t try to be a Lexus!
    It got my high income pilot friends buyin’ em.
    They got the gas fear and now have a Lexus and Acuras or Audi in their driveway.
    So much for the macho suburban male loyalty.

    Keep building trucks!
    Keep building cars.
    And don’t let them get them confused with each other.

  • avatar
    no_slushbox

    Ford was really smart to bring the Transit Connect over; with high gas prices and erased home equity the days of suburbanites playing dress up in pick-ups are over.

  • avatar
    davey49

    Don’t worry, playing dress up in fancy pickups will come back. At least for me it will. I’m too poor to even buy a toy truck these days but if I can manage to raise my income the next thing I’ll get is a fancy pickup or SUV. A big truck and a nice RV is my aspirational purchase. (much like sports cars or big luxury sedans for some people here)
    And if you don’t think there are people who both want a truck with high style and high capability you need to meet horse people.

  • avatar
    ppellico

    Horse people.
    Dog people.
    Cat people.
    Tree people…whatever.
    There is just something really out of wack when you can’t get into your truck without removing your muddy shoes.
    What next, plastic on the seat cushions like my Italian relative’s couch?
    Look…I can say that.
    I resemble the remark!

Read all comments

Back to TopLeave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Recent Comments

  • MitchConner: Tool Guy (great username by the way — as it fits), Nikola already conceded they fraudulently represented...
  • Inside Looking Out: I always liked the bold futuristic style of end of 1950s American cars given that I saw them only...
  • Pinkharlem: We have a beautiful 1981 Corona Hatchback that belonged to my father. My mother has been trying to sell...
  • Lou_BC: “The same people who recognize the greed will stay away” Agreed. I’d like to buy a new...
  • mcs: You’re probably thinking of their gas-powered models which do have a problem with catching fire. Hopefully...

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Who We Are

  • Adam Tonge
  • Bozi Tatarevic
  • Corey Lewis
  • Jo Borras
  • Mark Baruth
  • Ronnie Schreiber