Ford's F-150 Diesel Goes Downmarket

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
fords f 150 diesel goes downmarket

As rival General Motors prepares to tempt a broad swath of pickup buyers with its late-arriving 3.0-liter Duramax inline-six diesel, Ford Motor Company is changing its tactics. When the company’s 3.0-liter Power Stroke turbo-diesel V6 launched for the 2018 model year, Ford saw fit to relegate its new engine to truck buyers with deeper pockets.

This has now changed. Starting right away, the company plans to offer diesel propulsion to the mainstream (read: volume) truck buyer.

Announced Thursday, the Power Stroke V6 will soon appear in pickups bearing XLT lettering — Ford’s most popular F-150 trim. Until now, the oil burner was only available on the loftier Lariat, King Ranch, and Platinum trims, pushing the out-the-door price of those models even higher.

Making 250 horsepower and 440 lb-ft of torque, the mill’s output falls behind that of the Duramax, which boasts 277 hp and 460 lb-ft. However, the Power Stroke is available to order today.

Speaking to Roadshow, Ford’s truck communications manager, Dawn Mckenzie, said, “Customers and dealers told us they wanted the diesel on XLT, so we decided to expand the offering. Now, the 3.0-liter Power Stroke diesel will be available on 75 percent of our offerings, including XLT, which is our most popular series.”

Getting into an XLT diesel is not as simple as checking a box for the engine and its associated 10-speed automatic. The buyer must select an equipment group that brings to the table things like heated front seats, remote start, 18-inch wheels, and chrome trim. Ford’s not about to offer a diesel stripper.

While the price floor for an F-150 XLT is $35,755 after destination, the diesel isn’t available in regular cab models. Just SuperCab and SuperCrew. A base XLT SuperCab 4×2 retails for $38,655 after destination. Adding the diesel and 302A package brings the price of the cheapest sparkless F-150 to $46,255 — a price just above that of a Lariat SuperCrew with a 2.7-liter Ecoboost engine.

Still pricey, just not as pricey as before.

[Image: Ford]

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12 of 18 comments
  • Jerome10 Jerome10 on May 31, 2019

    Im glad the choice for consumers is there but I still don’t see the point of diesel outside regular towing. So at least trucks there seems to be a use case, unlike passenger cars. Still I wouldn’t touch this thing.

  • EBFlex EBFlex on May 31, 2019

    Ford is so stupid. Do they really think people are this dense? "“Customers and dealers told us they wanted the diesel on XLT, so we decided to expand the offering."" Really? All you focus grouping you did prior to offering this diesel that you said was not needed and you just now realize that offering it to more people is probably a good idea? Ford and Tesla. Both are in a race to out stupid the other one.

    • See 9 previous
    • DenverMike DenverMike on Jun 03, 2019

      @MiataReallyIsTheAnswer If you could only have one spec, the torque figure says way more vs. "HP" alone that leaves you with questions. This is true on gas engines too. It's a $6,000 engine all day long but $3,000 almost sounds rational, if you were going to get mid/upper trim loaded with gadgetry and bling anyway. Then it's the price of the EcoBoost or just a $1,000 hit over the V8. It's mind games, but if I wanted the diesel in a base/base stripper (retail buyer), even with a required long bed (for safety), I'd offer to pay the $6,000 to have it built, or a final $4,500 after rebates.

  • Jeff S I am not a fan of Tesla and they were niche vehicles but it seems that they have become more common. I doubt if I get an EV that it would be a Tesla. The electrical grid will have to be expanded because people over the long run are not going to accept the excuse of the grid can't handle people charging their EVs.
  • AMcA The '70 Continentals and Town Cars may have been cousins to the standard body Fords and Mercurys, they didn't have to be disguised, because they had unique, unbelievably huge bodies of their own. Looking at the new 1970 interior, I'd say it was also a cost savings in sewing the seat. Button tufted panels like the 1969 interior had require a lot of sewing and tufting work. The 1970 interior is mostly surface sewing on a single sheet of upholstery instead of laboriously assembled smaller pieces. FINALLY: do I remember correctly that the shag carpet shown under these cars was a Photoshop? They didn't really go so peak '70s as to photograph cars on shag carpets, did they?
  • Inside Looking Out Toyota makes mass market cars. Their statement means that EVs are not mass market yet. But then Tesla managed to make mass market car - Mode; 3. Where I live in CA there are more Tesla Model 3s on streets than Corollas.
  • Ltcmgm78 A lot of dirt must turn before there's an EV in every driveway. There must be a national infrastructure plan written by other than politicians chasing votes. There must be reliable batteries that hopefully aren't sourced from strategic rivals. There must be a way to charge a lot of EVs. Toyota is wisely holding their water. There is a danger in urging unplanned and hasty moves away from ICE vehicles. Do we want to listen to unending speeches every election cycle that we are closer than we have ever been to 100% electrification and that voting for certain folks will make it happen faster? Picture every car in your town suddenly becoming all electric and a third of them need a charge or the driver will be late for work. This will take a lot of time and money.
  • Kendahl One thing I've learned is that cars I buy for local errands tend to be taken on 1,000 mile trips, too. We have a 5-speed Focus SE that has gone on longer trips than I ever expected. It has served us well although, if I had it to do over again, I would have bought an ST. At the time of purchase, we didn't plan to move from 1,000 feet elevation to 6,500. The SE is still adequate but the ST's turbo and extra power would have been welcome.