Next-Gen Ford Super Duty To Receive Aluminum Bodies

Cameron Aubernon
by Cameron Aubernon

The King of Truck Mountain’s royal guard will soon be outfitted in aluminum, thanks to Ford’s vision for the next-gen Super Duty.

The Detroit News reports product development boss Raj Nair made the announcement during Ford’s investor day Monday. Though details were scarce, it’s likely the first aluminum-bodied Super Dutys will leave Louisville, Ky. in 2015 as 2016 models, in keeping with the bigger trucks following the F-150 down the upgrade trail.

As for the aluminum F-150, president of the Americas Joe Hinrichs said the Dearborn Truck Plant has completed the month-long changeover needed to make the new truck, with aluminum sheets running through the plant starting this week. The new F-150 is expected in showrooms by the end of the year, so long as nothing fancy is needed.

Cameron Aubernon
Cameron Aubernon

Seattle-based writer, blogger, and photographer for many a publication. Born in Louisville. Raised in Kansas. Where I lay my head is home.

More by Cameron Aubernon

Join the conversation
15 of 16 comments
  • Big Al from Oz Big Al from Oz on Oct 01, 2014

    The chicken that lays the golden egg. Living in a protected enclosure. I do hope Ford knows what it's doing. Hmmm......Very brave.

    • See 3 previous
    • Drzhivago138 Drzhivago138 on Oct 02, 2014

      @SayMyName That's not Ford bashing. A true fan of any manufacturer acknowledge's their favored company's faults and missteps with the hope that they will learn from them and improve. Ford eventually recovered from the 6.0 Powerstroke, Firestone tires, the Bronco II debacle, and the Pinto.

  • SteelyMoose SteelyMoose on Oct 01, 2014

    I know this is asking a lot, but I hope this generation marks a departure from styling that looks like it was done by a couple of 10-year-old boys trying to outdo each other.

  • Hummer Hummer on Oct 01, 2014

    So are they bumping the guage up? 3/16 of an inch maybe? Cutting weight in a HD truck is stupid, the weight is needed for towing. There's something else to this than saving weight, because that don't fly, I doubt rust is the answer either, those prevention techniques are much improved.

    • See 5 previous
    • Danio3834 Danio3834 on Oct 02, 2014

      @Lou_BC This is one of the basic reasons many over the road Class 8 trucks are going to Super Single tires on the tractor and trailer. Replacing a complete dual setup with singles effectively reduces the GVW by ~3/4 ton which can be directly translated into that much more cargo. Even with 3/4 to 1 ton trucks there is still an abundance of weight for traction and stability, and even then they have trailer sway control vehicle stability control to help mitigate any instability with a trailer. If the trailer is loaded properly and has good brakes, cutting a few hundred lbs isn't really of much if any consequence when it comes to towing. If anything, it will improve rated capacities.

  • Celebrity208 Celebrity208 on Oct 02, 2014

    My only thoughts on the whole aluminum switch is how durable the beds and tailgates will be. Can they be "banged" back into shape like so many work trucks that I see? Or, since Al isn't as ductile will the panels crack at the fold in the metal when a repair is attempted. I'd be interested in a reply from anyone familiar with Al body work.

    • Danio3834 Danio3834 on Oct 02, 2014

      Aluminum doesn't have the memory of steel so "banging" it back into shape will require more work with worse results. Of course, even with steel it's tough to "bang" an exterior panel back into shape and have it look good without filler and paint work, which at that point is more or less the same process. Paintless dent repair is tougher on aluminum and replacing sections of panels is more involved with more specialized equipment. There will be a lot more outright panel replacement with Al than straightening and repair as is sometimes done with steel.