Ford Wants You to Get Jacked
While Ford Motor Company doesn’t have any trouble offloading F-150s and Rangers on a truck-hungry populace, there’s always another way to sweeten the pot. To boost the appeal of its full- and mid-size offerings, the automaker will now offer off-road levelling kits, perhaps saving a unlucky pickup from scraping its chin.
Developed by Ford Performance Parts, the kits are a dealer-installed affair, offering buyers a way to leave the store with a touch more brawn.
“Truck customers are asking for options for increased capability and customization, and the new leveling suspension kits for Ranger and F-150 deliver on that need,” said Eric Cin, global director of Ford Vehicle Personalization and Accessories, in a statement.
Whereas butchy buyers can always opt for a F-150 Raptor for the ultimate in ditch-hopping, brust-busting off-road prowess, some owners might prefer something a little tamer. A way of adding that extra little bit of capability they can’t find from the factory. Of course, a Ranger Raptor is off the table for North American buyers, at least for now. In offering these packages, Ford is perhaps recognizing an empty seat in its truck lineup.
What does the package bring? For starters, there’s FOX shock co-developed with Ford Performance and tuned for better cooling capacity when the going gets rough, new front coilover springs with an optimized spring rate, new upper front mounts with polyurethane bushings, and a 2-inch front lift.
The added ride height up front apparently does wonders for trail stuff. Ford claims that, with package installed, the Ranger increases its approach angle by 21 percent, with a 10-percent increase in breakover angle. F-150 models with a 145-inch wheelbase can expect a 22-percent increase in breakover angle with kit installed. Breakover angle increases 7 percent.
Offered only on current-generation F-150 and Ranger 4×4 models, the kits carry a price tag of $1,495 and will be available through your dealer later this fall.
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I think this is good. I saw Honda offered a similar sort of suspension upgrade for the Fit that would make it a sort of "Fit Si" (no additional power sadly). I'd rather get the factory certified stuff if available.
Leveling kits are just plain stupid and show that at least 1/2 of truck buyers aren't doing any real work with their vehicles. You jack up the front end a few inches so the truck sits level. WTF happens when you put a load in the box?