The Legend of Ford's Truck Czar's Rule Over Truck Mountain

Cameron Aubernon
by Cameron Aubernon
the legend of ford s truck czar s rule over truck mountain

Once upon a time, one man rose from the realm of sales to helm Ford’s truck division. With his iron fist, he divided the F-150 range into several specialized units, reaping the rewards as his dominion over the light truck market expanded.

That man is Doug Scott, and this is the tale of how he came to be the Sovereign of Truck Mountain.

Though his title is humble, Ford’s Truck Group marketing manager has brought in $22 billion in revenue over the years, bettering his competitors through offering an F-150 for everyone. For example, contractors and landscapers just starting out could have the STX for just over $26,000, while businessmen making the big bucks off the Bakken could opt for the top-of-the-line Limited for around $54,000, and hardcore off-road prerunners can feel like a reptile in their Raptor beginning at $45,000.

This strategy has not only paid off for Ford, but has inspired General Motors and Chrysler to play follow the leader, with the Italo-American alliance spinning off the Ram brand from Dodge for greater focus while GM’s bowtie has unveiled their own luxury pickup to go up against the F-150 Platinum Edition. Meanwhile, the F-150 has lived at the summit of Truck Mountain since 2010, picking up $4,000 per truck than GM per Kelley Blue Book.

With 2013 sales on track to hit 700,000 units, and recording the best October since 2004, Scott aims to keep his competitors on their toes. His latest from the F-Series is a sport truck dubbed the Tremor, whose 3.5-liter turbocharged V6 will push the superbeast from zero to 60 in 6.4 seconds, just over one second slower than the V6 version of the Mustang.

The Tremor, like the King Ranch, the Raptor and all of the other F-150s, were born from the collaboration between the marketers and engineers within the truck group, who, in turn, gathered their information on what customers want from the customer relationships built through events and organizations, such as the Professional Bull Riders Association and the Future Farmers of America. The result: a 34.6 percent share of the truck market through September 2013, with the Chevy/GMC tag team a close second at 30.7 percent, and Ram a distant third with just 16.3 percent.

Photo credit: Ford

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  • DC Bruce DC Bruce on Nov 12, 2013

    I guess it was inconsistent with the puffy nature of this piece to add that Ford saddled its customers who bought 250 and 350 series heavy-duty pickup trucks with defectively designed diesel engines of 6 and 6.4 liters respectively, until 2010. The "all-new" 6.7 liter introduced in 2011 has yet to live up to the lousy reputation of its predecessors, but you gotta wonder about a V-block engine where the hot exhaust plumbing is the the "valley" of the Vee, sitting on top of the engine, instead of on the outside of the block, down at the sides. I assume this was a clever way of not having two separate turbos, which the "normal" airflow of a Vee-block engine dictates. Save some money, right?

  • Lou_BC Lou_BC on Nov 12, 2013

    @DC Bruce - GMC was working on a "baby" Duramax with the exact same design as the PowerStroke. It actually makes plumbing turbochargers much more efficient. No one uses carbs anymore and since fuel injection in the norm and DI becoming more prevalent, we may see other "unique" configurations. @Drzhivago138 - you raise a valid point. Chevrolet still does not have a valid competitor to the Platinum or King Ranch. The HighCountry trim seems to fit more at the Lariat level of trim. The Denali is targeted more at the Platinum. The problem is that many Chevy truck guys do not see the Sierra as a viable alternative. Many would rather go buy a Ram or Ford than a GMC. Many equate "GMC" to "Government Motors" and see it as a tainted line. Personally, I do not mind a 2 truck strategy since it varies with design cycle as to which line I like better. I liked the Sierra in the GMT800 & 900's and currently seem to be at a draw depending on the colour as to which 2014 GM sibling I like better. The 3 valve 5.4 had a vastly superior torque curve to the 5.3 Vortec. It had a higher level of torque right across the board even after hitting its 800 rpm lower peak, it still beat out the Chevy past that point. The Vortec beats out the 5.4 by 5 hp but in real life, that isn't where it is at.

    • Drzhivago138 Drzhivago138 on Nov 12, 2013

      I always felt Chevy's LTZ trim was their Lariat equivalent, since it's the lowest you can get with leather. Which would make High Country the equivalent of King Ranch and Laramie Longhorn. Ford's Limited trim (F-150 only) which is even more luxurious than Platinum, has no equivalent in any other brand. But I don't really even consider it a valid trim level--even anything over Lariat is too fancy to be considered a usable pickup truck. Plus, AFAIK, it is (or used to be, anyway) truly "limited"--once they make so many models (5000 or so), that's all for the year.

  • Gabe Awesome. Owners can cook their DNA with EMFs while watching YouTube now.
  • Cardave5150 Why oh why are they resurrecting the ZDX name??? It’s not like the last one was anything other than an overpriced freak show. Just use 3 other random letters!
  • Gemcitytm Why does it seem every EV seems to have ridiculous amounts of power? Yes, I know they're heavier than ICE models but who on earth needs 708 HP? How about a nice, compact EV with, say, 250 HP and 350-400 mile range? Is that impossible with today's tech? (I currently drive a 148 HP Mazda 3 ICE and it has all the get-up-and-go I need.)
  • CEastwood I could have bought one of these if I had the cash in 76 for $1000 white , red interior , 3 speed stick with whitewalls/ wire hubcaps - it was mint and gone a day after I saw it . But the real catch that got away was an all original 69 green Camaro RS convertible 327 4 speed with 46K on the clock for 1800 that I saw a few months earlier . Young and poor was not a fun place to be !
  • KOKing I'm in an emissions check only state, and I'd trade that away for a safety check all day.