By on January 27, 2020

2019 Ford F150 Lariat FX4 front quarter

2019 Ford F-150 4x4 Lariat SuperCrew Power Stroke

3.0-liter turbodiesel V6 (250 hp @ 3250 rpm, 440 lb-ft @ 1750 rpm)

Ten-speed automatic transmission, four-wheel drive

20 city / 25 highway / 22 combined (EPA Rating, MPG)

11.8 city / 9.3 highway / 10.7 combined (NRCan Rating, L/100km)

24.1 (observed mileage, MPG)

Base Price: $49,580 US / $54,449 CAD

As Tested: $70,100 US/ $78,349 CAD

Prices include $1,595 destination charge in the United States and $2,000 for freight, PDI, and A/C tax in Canada and, because of cross-border equipment differences, can’t be directly compared.

I’ve never owned a truck. Over my two-plus decades of driving, I’ve shopped for trucks new and used, but have always stopped short of stroking a check for something with a bed for various reasons big and little. Typically I needed something with more interior space, more lockable cargo space, or more comfort — but one thing always holding me back was fuel economy. Traditionally, trucks aren’t particularly efficient.

However, modern diesel engines can yield impressive economy, which is why we’re beginning to see them trickle into the half-ton range of pickups from each of the Detroit Three. Ford, long the sales leader in the segment, has given the Power Stroke treatment to this F-150, and we were curious if it improves an already impressive truck.

2019 Ford F150 Lariat FX4 profile

We have a number of our regular readers who, before reading anything else — occasionally in lieu of reading anything else — go directly to the Fast Facts information box to pass judgement upon the vehicle in question. Indeed, there are two numbers that will dilate pupils, furrow brows, and warm up keyboards across the vast sea of B&B commentariat. So, let’s address them right here.

2019 Ford F150 Lariat FX4 front

First, of course, is the sticker price. From a base price of just under fifty thousand dollars, my Lariat-trimmed turbodiesel rings the register with more than twenty thousand dollars worth of options. Let’s break down some of the big-ticket options:

  • Equipment Group 502A $7050 — Lariat trim, blind-spot monitor with trailer monitoring, remote start, B&O sound system, heated steering wheel, and second-row heated seats
  • 3.0-liter V6 Turbo Diesel $4000
  • Power Running Boards $995
  • Twin-panel moonroof $1495
  • Voice-activated navigation $795
  • Trailer tow package $995
  • FX4 off-road package $905
  • 20” six-spoke painted alloy wheels $1295
  • Technology package $1195 — 360-degree camera
  • Spray-in bedliner $595

That’s a ton of goodies atop an already pricey truck. Certainly there is some fluff in these prices for the incentives that always crop up, but my goodness. Just once I’d love to see a vehicle in the press fleet with steel wheels, vinyl floors, no satellite radio, and the good engine.

2019 Ford F150 Lariat FX4 rear

Anyhow, many of these options are lovely to have, and are arguably worth the price asked — and, as usual, I’ll sort out how I’d spec my Power Stroke F-150 at the bottom of the page. I’ve no doubt that Ford will easily move these trucks, no matter the price. I just lament that I can’t buy a stripper truck for ten grand anymore. Off my lawn, and all that.

The other big number is the as-tested fuel economy of 24.1 miles per gallon. I spent a bit of time at highway speeds, but most of my driving was my usual 35-55 mph suburban boulevard and rural two-lane, and the big truck didn’t gulp the fuel like even my minivan does. I’d love to spend more time with the Power Stroke to see what kind of real-world numbers it’d manage over several tanks, but I easily beat the 22 mpg combined estimate without even trying.

Without looking at the badges, you’d be hard pressed to know this was a diesel. It’s basically silent on the inside, with barely any clatter noticeable from the outside. I’ve spent some time with many modern direct-injected gasoline engines that sound more diesel-like than this 3.0 V6 oil-burner.

2019 Ford F150 Lariat FX4 Power Stroke badge

The 10-speed automatic feels perfectly suited to this engine, keeping the low-revving V6 in the heart of the powerband with quick, nearly imperceptible up-and-downshifts. Driving the F-150 was effortless. Other than being mindful of the sheer size (again, I normally drive a minivan) squirting into a gap in traffic or ahead of a dawdling hybrid at a merge was a breeze.

2019 Ford F150 Lariat FX4 interior

It’s telling, however, that the Max Tow package for the F-150 requires the 3.5-liter twin-turbo EcoBoost gas V6, rather than this diesel engine. As my tester was equipped — 3.31 rear gears (electronically locking), 145-inch wheelbase, 4×4 Supercrew — the truck is rated for 10,300 pounds. The same size 4×4 truck with the Max Trailer Tow package (EcoBoost, 3.55 gears) can handle 12,700 pounds. 2,400 pounds can make a difference, but if your hauling needs aren’t to Max Tow levels, diesel fuel economy tends to remain higher than gas when towing. That could make a difference in the long run.

2019 Ford F150 Lariat FX4 front seats 2019 Ford F150 Lariat FX4 rear seats

I could very easily live with this truck. The interior on this mid-grade Lariat isn’t super plush, but it’s comfortable in all the right spots. The front seats are heated and cooled — you’d be surprised at how often my bride would heat her seat while I cooled mine — with the aforementioned optional rear seat heating coddled the tweens. The ride was a touch firm from the 20-inch wheels and off-road focused FX4 package, but it wasn’t objectionable. There was no cowl shake or other untoward noise when nailing expansion joints or speed bumps at inadvisable speeds.

2019 Ford F150 Lariat FX4 dashboard

The Sync3 8.0-inch touchscreen still isn’t the most responsive infotainment system I’ve used, nor are the graphics the most attractive, but it’s intuitive and works reasonably well. Thankfully, many of the typical audio controls and nearly all of the HVAC controls can be managed with large knobs and buttons below the screen — great when wearing gloves.

2019 Ford F150 Lariat FX4 center stack

Here’s where I’m going to save a boatload of theoretical cash when I build my theoretical F-150 Power Stroke: I’m abandoning four-wheel drive. The snow is almost never so bad around here that I’d need extra driven wheels — a limited-slip differential would be all I’d need.  My imaginary truck would be a relatively stripped XLT 4×2 SuperCrew, with the 302A luxury package at $4,345 (chrome appearance package, heated power front seats, and remote start), $995 for the trailer tow package, and $725 for the XLT power equipment group (110v outlet in the dash, LED box lighting, and power-slide rear window). Add another $595 for the spray-in bedliner and $420 for the locking rear end, and I’ve a great, fuel-efficient truck for $52,085 delivered.

F150 Build And Price

A diesel engine might be what it takes to get me into a proper truck. This Power Stroke-powered F-150 takes an already great truck, and amplifies it.

2019 Ford F150 Lariat FX4 blue oval badge

 

2019 Ford F150 Lariat FX4 rear quarter[Images: © 2020 Chris Tonn/TTAC; build-and-price screenshot via Ford.com]

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92 Comments on “2019 Ford F-150 SuperCrew Power Stroke Review – Strokin’...”


  • avatar
    JimZ

    to put some perspective on it, $4,000 is roughly what you’d have paid for the diesel option on an F-250 from 20 years ago, and get about 230 hp and 450 lb-ft of torque from the 7.3 Powerstroke. So for the same number of dollars you’re buying the same hp and torque, only with a much smaller engine.

    the modern day HD pickup’s expensive ($8-10k) diesel option is because of all the s**t they have to do to enable them to put out 400+ hp and almost 1,000 lb-ft.

  • avatar
    jack4x

    I will probably never understand the appeal of a diesel engine in a 1/2 ton.

    Anyone who wants to tow heavy is better off in an 3.5TT or an F250.

    Anyone who wants efficiency will find lower overall fuel costs in the 2.7TT or maybe even the 5.0 depending on use case.

    Fleets can’t run away from modern diesel fast enough, so this must be intended for some affluent buyer who’s willing to put up with the tradeoffs of an oil burner but yet not willing enough to just buy the 6.7L Super Duty? Why bother certifying it for that size market?

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      I will probably never understand the appeal of a diesel engine in a 1/2 ton…

      Personally when GM announced their new inline 6 diesel I would have been more excited if they announced that the new base gas engine in the Silverado/Sierra was an inline 6.

    • 0 avatar
      JimZ

      “I will probably never understand the appeal of a diesel engine in a 1/2 ton.”

      not too long ago a lot of people were saying “who the hell would buy a truck with a turbo V6?”

      at any rate, diesels tend to be far easier to get better-than-sticker mpg, thanks to the lack of a throttle.

      • 0 avatar
        jack4x

        OK, a thought experiment:

        20 mpg combined for the 2.7TT. $2.19/gallon for 87 around me right now.

        22 mpg combined for the 3.0 PS. I’ll agree that diesels can more easily do better than sticker, so call it 25 mpg. Diesel is $2.79 around me right now.

        15,000 miles per year comes to $1642 for the gas and $1674 for the diesel. That’s before additional maintenance and DEF, etc. So what really am I paying $4000 for?

        Just get the 6.7 if you want diesel.

        • 0 avatar
          Hummer

          And for only $2,190 a year you could be in a 7.3L F250. Doing math like this is how I end up with more vehicles in my drive way. >.<

          • 0 avatar
            kjhkjlhkjhkljh kljhjkhjklhkjh

            ^^ yup … And I REALLY do like the cut of the new 7.3. Just need to wait a year or two and see what ‘revisions’/fixes are applied to it and get a revised non-first run engine

          • 0 avatar
            Hummer

            “ Just need to wait a year or two and see what ‘revisions’/fixes are applied to it and get a revised non-first run engine”

            This +10

          • 0 avatar
            JimZ

            I’d be very interested to know what tangible goods the two of you have made which were absolutely perfect from the outset.

            “those who can, do. Those who can’t, criticize.”

          • 0 avatar
            Hummer

            “ I’d be very interested to know what tangible goods the two of you have made which were absolutely perfect from the outset.”

            Usually the issues are supposed to get worked out before the product comes to market, for smaller companies this is the different between bankruptcy and expanding your business.

            Ford has a history of putting halfarsed product onto US roadways and then acting surprised when they inevitably fail. There’s an article on the front page now with an example of this.

            Ford probably has more case studies done on it in universities across this country than any other company.

          • 0 avatar
            JimZ

            “Usually the issues are supposed to get worked out before the product comes to market, for smaller companies this is the different between bankruptcy and expanding your business.

            Ford has a history of putting halfarsed product onto US roadways and then acting surprised when they inevitably fail. There’s an article on the front page now with an example of this.

            Ford probably has more case studies done on it in universities across this country than any other company.”

            you could have just responded with “nothing.”

          • 0 avatar
            Hummer

            Well that wouldn’t be true, so I did not respond that way.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            “Usually the issues are supposed to get worked out before the product comes to market”

            The general rule of thumb with any new vehicle is not to buy the first year of a new product run. That applies to all of the so called “domestic” car companies.

        • 0 avatar
          JimZ

          minimum price of a diesel F-150: $42,565
          minimum price of a diesel F-250: $48,130

          (comparing supercab 2WD)

          But that’s an F-150 XLT compared to an F-250 XL. If you compare XLT to XLT the 250 is over $53k.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            Unless something’s changed, the 3.0 diesel requires Lariat trim which requires crew cab which more or less filters out industrial use.

          • 0 avatar
            ajla

            If you have a “fleet code” or something like that then Ford will sell you a 3.0L diesel F-150 in base trim.
            For normies you can do a diesel in XLT trim but to unlock the engine you have to opt for a fancy pants option package that makes it cost about the same as the Lariat anyway.

          • 0 avatar
            JimZ

            “Unless something’s changed, the 3.0 diesel requires Lariat trim which requires crew cab which more or less filters out industrial use.”

            something did change, because the 3.0 became available on XLT for 2020.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      “Fleets can’t run away from modern diesel fast enough”

      Fleet managers know that their trucks are going to be abused and misused. In my part of the world fleet trucks get pounded to death on gravel roads, logging sites, construction sites and mine sites. These trucks don’t survive long enough to get a “return on investment” from the diesel purchase.

      • 0 avatar
        jack4x

        My contention is that in the 1/2 ton market there is no return on investment even if the truck lasted a million miles.

        HDs are a bit different because there the diesel has capability advantages that some users need no matter the price.

        But anyone trying to justify a diesel engine (of any size) on total cost of ownership is going to come up short in 2020. Durability arguments are best left in the 1990s when they were still true. Perhaps some parts of the country have diesel and 87 octane competitively priced, but everywhere I’ve been recently it’s been at least 50 cents higher per gallon for diesel. You’ll never make up the initial outlay at that rate.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          @jack4x – The one rationale buyers would give for a diesel was fuel economy but lower sulfur fuel combined with particulate traps/regen cycles makes it a wash. The other reason is power characteristics. I’ve driven EB 3.5’s and they feel very “diesel like” in power delivery with a broad flat torque/HP band that doesn’t like over-rev. The 3.0’s 250 HP/440 lb.-ft. is not going to outperform the EB 2.7’s 325 HP/400 lb.-ft. let alone the EB 3.5’s 375 HP/470 lb ft. Even the normally aspirated 5.0 V8 bests it with 395 HP/400 lb ft. There are those that will point out the torque numbers but torque is not a measure of work, HP is.

    • 0 avatar
      indi500fan

      My daily UPS visit comes from a brown truck that used to be a Cummins six but now is a GM V8 gasser. I assume those folks understand pretty well what the true lowest total cost of ownership is.

      • 0 avatar
        TCragg

        Former UPS manager here. UPS uses a variety of powertrains in its delivery fleet, and does not standardize on one engine/fuel source for the sake of “not putting all of its eggs in one basket”. The mix of gasoline, diesel, propane, CNG, hybrid, and electric propulsion is deliberate, and allows UPS to hedge against fluctuations in fuel costs and test new technology. UPS package cars are assigned to routes to match cube needs and other route characteristics. Older cars are also rotated to lower-mileage routes as they near disposal. The replacement of the diesel with a gasoline delivery vehicle likely had nothing to do with fuel source. UPS tends to keep their delivery fleet for 20+ years, so any calculation of TCO is performed with a long timeframe in mind. In my own recollection, the diesel cars lasted 200k miles between rebuilds, and the gassers were under 100k.

      • 0 avatar
        krhodes1

        One of my cousins is the fleet manager for my hometown in Maine. He has stopped buying diesel school buses and 2-axle dumptrucks (plows). Too much upfront cost, and too much additional maintenance plus the more expensive fuel. The buses are all Ford V10s, not sure what the trucks are. Only diesel buses he is planning to keep are the big pushers that get used for field trips and sports teams – those get enough mileage to where the diesel makes some sense.

    • 0 avatar
      stuki

      “I will probably never understand the appeal of a diesel engine in a 1/2 ton.”

      If you have a fuel pump at work or on the farm, and can get away with running dyed/offroad diesel.

      • 0 avatar
        jack4x

        Pretty telling that it takes breaking the law to make the numbers work.

        • 0 avatar

          I do see a fair number of contractors (with transfer tanks in the bed) with Eco diesel trucks. I assume some off road diesel is going in.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            It is pretty common in my part of the world to find small contractors or farmers running “purple” fuel in their road vehicles.

            Even if one does not “cheat” it is always more cost effective to use the same bulk fuel in all of your vehicles as opposed to gas station fuel. Bulk purchases are always cheaper.

          • 0 avatar
            krhodes1

            When I drove a diesel Peugeot and worked on the waterfront in Portland, ME, “diesel tank checks” by the State cops were a regular thing. Just like a drunk check – pull over, they dip a wand in your tank and check for dye. Some ridiculous fine for a first offense, like $5K. Lots of fishermen thought they could get away with running dyed diesel, and in the winter “home heating oil” was dyed diesel due to the cold at a much lower price.

          • 0 avatar
            PrincipalDan

            When I drove a diesel Peugeot and worked on the waterfront in Portland, ME, “diesel tank checks” by the State cops were a regular thing.

            A few years after the diesel grading changed to on road and off road formulations my Dad was heading to a farm expo in Ohio. At the gate the state police were doing fuel checks of farmers trucks as they came through the parking gate.

            Caught many gentleman with off road diesel in their tanks.

  • avatar
    Hummer

    I’m starting to see real world fuel economy on the 7.3L gasser put up around 15MPG, with numbers that good I expect that more people will start moving up to the 3/4 trucks. Saving a couple MPG to be stuck with small diesels or EPS seems foolish.

    • 0 avatar
      JimZ

      “I’m starting to see real world fuel economy on the 7.3L gasser put up around 15MPG,”

      downhill with a tail wind, maybe.

      • 0 avatar
        Hummer

        No from reading F-series forums. It’s very believable, towards the end of the H2 run the 6.2L 6 speed trucks were getting 13.5-14MPG on a full time 4×4 7000lb truck from factory with 35”s so the new F250 7.3L getting 15MPG with the 10 speed only driving the rear axle in normal conditions seems Very reasonable.

      • 0 avatar
        MrIcky

        16mpg is what TFL got on a highway loop, so on slewed toward highway conditions 15 is plausible but optimistic for combined…as long as you don’t tremorize it.

        But “saving a couple mpg”? Well a couple mpg would be what- 15%? That’s a pretty big deal to consider in itself- but it’s not a couple- its closer to 5ish for a gas model and closer to 15ish for the small diesel (at least in the other 2 brands with more efficient diesels). So 25% for gas and 50% in actual fuel usage offset by price- so maybe 35% for a small diesel? That’s hugely more efficient.

        If you don’t need an HD, it’s even harder to make a logical case for one now since 1500s are so capable.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      One should look at payload when comparing diesel to gas. If one buys a F250 or F350 with the 6.7 diesel one takes a 600 lb hit in payload capacity. You basically need the F350 if you buy it with the 6.7 diesel. A F250 crew 4×4 SRW will have an 1800 lb payload with the 6.7. I haven’t look at the payload difference between a F150 diesel and a gasser.

  • avatar
    deanst

    I was going to say that I’m grateful that Ford can sell mid range trucks for $70,000 as it allows them to sell nice, sporty cars for $20,000.

    But then I remember Ford no longer makes small, sporty cars.

  • avatar
    jack4x

    I have to say though, that is a sharp looking truck and refreshingly free of chrome (while not being blacked out).

    More like this please.

  • avatar
    Jerome10

    Not being a truck guy, and really no longer having any interest in diesel, and generally preferring Ford to General Motors or FCA….

    I think I’d be most interested in the I6 General Motors truck if I were shopping. Ford truck diesels never seem to give me any warm and fuzzies, General Motors can make very good engines, and I6 is great call.

    Would love a review or comparison at TTAC!

  • avatar
    Jon

    “I’ve never owned a truck.”

    Thanks for the attempt, but this review is hardly a review. Please use the truck as it was intended (suggestions below) and then review it. Please don’t use the same metrics that you would a car. Here are a few suggestions for using and reviewing the truck.

    1. Tow something (or several somethings) that is 25% to 75% of rated capacity. Tow it up a hill. Comment on the stability, control, power, transmission shifts, etc.
    2. Put something heavy in the bed – 50% to 70% of rated capacity. Comment on the squat, control, power, etc.
    3. This is a diesel; reliability may be important to those purchasing it. Since the engine and transmission are relatively new, address the reliability thus far and present your concerns. Tell Fords story of developing the engine. When is this powertrain better/worse in (insert conditions here).
    4. This model is four wheel drive. Take it in the snow. How well does the ESC system work? Is there adequate ground clearance? Should i launch my hypothetical boat at the ramp or at the shore?
    5. Its a crew cab, so pick up the kids from school. Put the whole family in it. How much bickering occurred? What there adequate space to prevent the younger ones from play “cross that line”? Can four or five adults fit comfortably in the cab?

    These are just a few suggestions. If you are going to review a truck, please use metrics which are suited for a truck. Maybe, just maybe, folks will stop using trucks a cars and start seeing/using them for what they are.

    • 0 avatar
      Hummer

      “ Maybe, just maybe folks will stop using trucks a cars and start seeing/using them for what they are.”

      Objectively speaking this is a family sedan, it has a small fuel economy focused drive train, EPS for easy riding, a softly sprung suspension, good leg room for rear passengers, lots of “trunk” space for groceries, and lots of parking and driving aids.

      Since the loss of the Crown Vic there are really no other options for decent American-esque sedans.

      • 0 avatar
        The Ghost of Buckshot Jones

        Charger, Avalon, Kia K900, Cadenza, Optima, Stinger, the Hyundai badge clones, Impala, 300c, the bevy of discontinued Buicks and Cadillac XTSs you can pick up new for 60 cents on the dollar. The list goes on.

        • 0 avatar
          Hummer

          How many of those are body on frame with crown Vic like storage, optional front bench seat, RWD V8. You list a couple decent cars but by no means not a single traditional American-sequel vehicle among the lot.

          Most modern fullsizers feel inadequately small, perhaps it’s the steep tumble home?

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          I’ve owned two of the things on your list. While I vastly prefer driving them against any full-size truck they are a poor utility substitute for the large sedans of yore.

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        Old BOF sedans were tough and could tow, but on the other side of the coin they were terribly packaged and had surprisingly little interior room in any dimension except width. I have spent a lot of time in my life in the back seat of Panthers, and only the extended-wheelbase ones are as comfortable for a back-seat passenger as a Camry.

        Crew-cab pickups have steadily lengthened the cab over time and the latest generations are pretty comfortable in back, but they’re all longer than pretty much any BOF sedan ever was.

        • 0 avatar
          Hummer

          Not surprising to you or I that Americans would want to go bigger. Trading bed(trunk) space for interior space.

        • 0 avatar
          Dan

          “I have spent a lot of time in my life in the back seat of Panthers, and only the extended-wheelbase ones are as comfortable for a back-seat passenger as a Camry.”

          Fore-aft wise yes, but I could sit up straight in the back seat of a Crown Vic, or a Camry from the Crown Vic era, and I can’t in a new Camry.

          • 0 avatar
            gtem

            “and I can’t in a new Camry.”

            They really screwed the pooch in this regard on the ’18+ Camry. The old K platform car was very upright by comparison, much easier for getting in and out of, with more headroom once you’re inside.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        “Objectively speaking this is a family sedan”

        I have to agree with @Hummer on this one. Probably half of pickup buyers don’t really need one i.e. for typical truck duties. I don’t view towing as a typical pickup duty. Statistically 1/2 ton pickups don’t tow more than 5,000 lbs. Most larger SUV’s can tow that much weight. Carrying stuff in the box is a typical pickup duty!
        The author complained about “more lockable cargo space”. A tonneau cover gives you a lockable 52.8 cubic foot trunk.

    • 0 avatar
      Jon

      Does a car become a truck because someone starts to use it like a truck? No. It is still a car (that is used like a truck). Likewise, a truck does not become a car if someone uses it like a car.

      An objects’ use does not change its inherent design traits. Remaining truly objective, this is a truck, not something else.

      All the superficial fluff mentioned in the article is fine and wonderful if the reader uses a truck like a car. However, the silent many are left desiring more than an evaluation of unloaded ride quality, fit, finish and tech from a “truck review”. The review is missing the other half of the evaluation of what this truck is designed to do.

      • 0 avatar
        Hummer

        “ An objects’ use does not change its inherent design traits. ”

        Therein lies my point, this was designed primarily as a passenger vehicle, don’t let the vestigial bed fool you. If it is a truck-truck you seek we have refrigerator white 2 doors in the far lot beside the F250s with crank windows and rubber floors.

        Also Holden and Ford Utes would like to have a word with you on cars being used as trucks.

        • 0 avatar
          Jon

          I disagree. This vehicle was designed to perform passenger car and (primarily) pickup truck duties. It should be reviewed according to BOTH. The blurb we have above is only half of an appropriate review.

          Just because you disagree with or dislike a vehicle design does not justify ignoring the part you like or dont like just to prove a point. Like it or not (i dont), this truck (and other crap like it) is what we have to work with. Review it according to AAALLL of its characteristics.

          This particular specimen boast a tow rating of 10klbs. Id like to hear about that aspect of its performance.

          Tell Mr(s). Holden, Mr(s) Ute and even Mr(s) Ridgeline to ask for my contact info through TTAC. Ill tell them that they are trucks, really embarrassing, small trucks that i would never choose to drive.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      Still they’re much improved. Not long ago TTAC reviews of pickups sent you searching for axle ratios, torque figures and if open or locking diffs.

      Expecting them to go mudding, rock crawling and towing on 7% grades might be too much (if not dangerous!!!)

  • avatar
    dal20402

    Fine truck, completely pointless powertrain. The same truck with the 3.5TT is a better product in every respect. The same truck with the 2.7TT is a better product for the vast majority of buyers.

    • 0 avatar
      Ol Shel

      “Fine truck, completely pointless powertrain for ME.” Fixed it for ya.

      While I may agree that there’s little argument for the diesel for most pickup owners, I would point out that, in the wide-open spaces of the center of the country and especially the northern Rockies, people put huge miles on their trucks. With big distances between cities, and less salt use in winter, trucks last for as long as they’re maintained, not until they corrode into dust, like back east.

      I can’t say for sure exactly how many miles the 3.5TT is good for, or if the new diesel will last as long as old ones, but there’s still a market wanting diesel, so it makes sense to offer it.

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        Given the record of the gas EcoBoosts to date, I’d pick either of the gas turbos every time if I were looking for ultimate reliability. The second-gen 3.5TT is still very new but the 2.7TT and the first-gen 3.5TT have both been excellent. There’s also the 5.0 which has done very well. You’re right that this diesel is unproven, but modern light-duty diesels in general have a record to steer clear from.

        • 0 avatar
          JimZ

          this isn’t exactly a new engine; it’s a slightly embiggened Jaguar-Land Rover AJD-V6. Been around for about 15 years now.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          In many respects one can view the 3.5 litre ecoboost as a gasoline powered diesel. IIRC it was designed to mimic a diesel and is built rather robustly. I talked to a fleet mechanic and he claimed that the 3.5 EB was more reliable than the 5.0’s in his fleet.

        • 0 avatar
          EBFlex

          With the amount of people I know that have had to replace turbos in their Ecobust engines I’d get the 5.0L.

          Better than the EgoBust in every possible way. And it won’t leave you stranded.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @EBFlex – Considering your track record, I’ll take the word of an unbiased mechanic over you!

          • 0 avatar
            Hummer

            Frankly the 5.0L does not have a very good track record at the moment, there seems to be a chunky failure rate in those units when you go looking.

            I wouldn’t choose any F-150 based on their current engine options.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @Hummer – I would be reluctant to buy a new F150 due to quality issues. I’d have to review data before buying anything. My 2010 F150 has been very reliable so far.
            I like the idea of the F250 Tremor with the 7.3 V8. The diesel is just too heavy and expensive. Chevy screwed up by not offering their new inline 6 diesel in the Trail Boss.

          • 0 avatar
            Hummer

            Honestly Lou I’ve gone looking through all the half tons and midsizers – I’ve found issues with all of them and would feel more comfortable buying several years used than new. I think the three bright spots are the 4 cylinder Colorado/Canyon, the 4 cylinder Tacoma(though weak and overpriced), and the Frontier(though ancient and uncompetitive fuel economy and power).

            I’m not impressed by any half ton trucks, almost all due to failure rates of major components, engineering/quality issues, sh*tty components designs(Ram transfer case clutches), or even design and country of origin.

            The F250, 7.3L Tremor 4.30 axles has the real potential of putting me into a new Ford for the first time ever. But as I’ve said multiple times I’m going to let others be the Guiana pigs for this.

          • 0 avatar
            Art Vandelay

            I have seen 2 Ecoboost turbos replaced. They were both on cars often driven 1/4 mile at a time and both had perfectly functional turbos at replacement (one is in my garage should I decide to go that route one day).

            Incidentally they are still putting all that power to stock bottom ends.

            Ford has many failures of late, but this seems to be one thing they got right. At the end of the day buying a Ford is much like it has been for most of my life. You roll the dice unless you buy: a truck or a car with a manual transmission. That last bit was actually easier than you’d have thought until recently.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @Hummer – I’m leaning towards a Colorado diesel. It seems to have less issues than the Colorado gasser.

  • avatar
    ajla

    Truck reviews, especially diesel truck reviews, always seem to get people breaking out their calculators and colored pencils.
    Really, unless you’re an actual fleet manager, you might as well just buy whichever half-ton gets your d*ck hard. No need to try and conjure up some justification for it.

  • avatar
    EBFlex

    There is no reason to buy this overpriced, low quality pile of mediocrity over a Ram. The Ram outshines this in every conceivable way.

    • 0 avatar
      Jagboi

      The Ram is incredibly ugly, I don’t know how they sell any. Pius, where I am the biggest a*sholes on the road either either BMW drivers or Ram drivers. Usually Ram drivers by a larger margin.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      “The Ram outshines this in every conceivable way.”

      Maybe the owner just uses a better brand of car wax.

    • 0 avatar
      Right_Click_Refresh

      With the amount of people I know that have had severe problems with their Rams, people would be wise to stay far away from them for a long time to come.
      WEEEEE this is fun!

  • avatar
    gearhead77

    I get the appeal of these, the “large sedan with a bed” concept. I’ve rented a “classic” RAM in both 3.6 and 5.7 forms and done long highway drives in both and was really impressed. The V8/ 8spd would be the version to get, though I’m sure the Ecodiesel is fine. I liked the truck, until I realized I’d have to park it and drive it all the time. One particularly small parking lot I frequent was really annoying.

    I recently rented a basic 2019 Ford from Uhaul. Reg cab,4×2 V8 and nothing besides air, cruise and some other stuff. The only thing I would have wanted would be a Supercab. As it was, it was about 32k on the website.

    In short, personally, 50k rents a lot of trucks. The market is non-existent, but the El Camino, Caballero and even Subaru Baja would be more of what I’d like to put in my driveway.

    The author brings up something I’d like to see, but again, is another nearly non-existent market: diesel (or hybrid) minivan from someone other than Chrysler. Our current Sienna averages 15-16 mpg all city (lots of hills too). The Toyota V6 is strong, but the power peaks are high and the Eco programming means you have really have to prod it to move. The instant torque of an electric or diesel would be nice.

  • avatar
    DC Bruce

    Having spent months searching for a truck to pull my new travel trailer in 2015, let me just say that the relevant number for most 1/2 ton pickups is payload, not towing capacity. A trailer puts weight on the truck’s rear axle, so that’s “payload.” When I was shopping, the typical 1/2 ton crew cab had a payload of around 12-1400 lbs. If you want more, you have to lose some or all of the “crew” part of the cab. I shopped over 1,000 miles to find the truck in the photo, which has a rated payload of !940 lbs. My 7600 lb. GVWR trailer puts about !000 lbs on the rear axle of my truck (before some weight transfer forward accomplished by the weight-distributing hitch. With a couple of passengers, a 100 lb. dog and some stuff in the bed, you can see that I’m just about maxed out for payload. The fact that the truck is rated to tow, I think, 12,000 lbs. is pretty much irrelevant.

    None of the 1/2 ton diesels are towing monsters — unlike their 3/4 ton big brothers. For serious towing with a 1/2 ton (and payload) get a 3.5 Ecoboost or the 6.2 liter engine that’s in my truck. Torque be damned, if you’re only developing 250-275 horsepower, towing anything other than a 20-foot boat is not going to be fun.

  • avatar
    bullnuke

    A quick look at Ford’s trailer towing selector (https://www.ford.com/cmslibs/content/dam/brand_ford/en_us/brand/resources/general/pdf/guides/20Towing_Ford_F150_Oct15.pdf) doesn’t show any advantage to this diesel application versus the 5.0L or 3.5L for doing what a diesel does best – towing. But, hey man! It’s a diesel!

  • avatar
    ToolGuy

    Those package markups (ex. 502A, 302A, Tech Pkg) are approaching mall-jewelry-store levels. [I have a new appreciation for how Ford is generating profit on pickups.]

    • 0 avatar
      Dan

      The trim markups are absurd but Ford gets you just as badly on the basic mechanical components that should have been standard to begin with.

      Normal size gas tank in place of the small one which only exists so they can upcharge for the normal one: $445.

      Ability to tow: $995.

      Reasonable axle ratio, less important for the turbo V6 that everyone gets, but on principle this should be included too: $570.

  • avatar
    gtem

    I will never cease to be amazed at how pricey these things are. Just under $50k(!!!) as the base price, and then almost $20k in options? PrincipalDan made a good point a number of times, in that most truck people are trading something in and just continuing their perpetual payment cycle, so they don’t feel the full brunt of that. Add to this about $15k in discounts right off the bat of course. Even then, it’s crazy that in a country with a median household income of $63k (ish), that the F150 is the best selling vehicle. I wonder what the numbers would look like in terms of total sales looking purely at retails sales: fewer total sold, but much higher average transaction price.

  • avatar
    thelaine

    I will be very interested in how the Wrangler’s little diesel will hold up when they introduce it in the near future. More off-road crawling torque and vehicle range are always welcome.

  • avatar

    There are people who just like diesels. I think today you can tune gas to behave a lot like a diesel so a lot of the edge is gone. For years I wanted a diesel truck but never bought one. Now with emissions I’m not sure I would want a new one. For the HD trucks the diesel resale value kind of makes up for the initial hit making the diesel more palatable but I have seen ecodiesel halfton rams selling at 3-4 years old at very little premium (1-2K) over the hemi ones.

    That said while combing thru various forums etc looking for common threads on modern diesels, the little baby duramax seems to have a really good rep 5 years in and makes a used one kind of temtipng.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      @mopar4wd – everyone says that resale is better on a diesel but is that just because there is a 5-6k (1/2 ton) 10-12k (HD) price premium right up front? A Limited Ram or F150 has a higher resale value than a mid-level trim packed one.

      • 0 avatar
        jack4x

        @Lou,

        Yes, this is the reason. Gas and diesel HD trucks depreciate at about the same rate. If you pay $10k more up front of course you should get $5k more back when the truck is worth half as much as new.

        Right now the old diesel trucks are emissions free, so they still command a premium over a gas truck of similar vintage. That may change though as better gas engines and more finicky diesel engines get up in years. Time will tell if a 2010 model diesel has much premium over a 2010 gas truck in 2025 for example.

    • 0 avatar
      gearhead77

      “I think today you can tune gas to behave a lot like a diesel so a lot of the edge is gone.”

      Some truth to this. My last car before my VW Golf was a ’16 Chevy Cruze with the 1.4T. Mated to the 6 spd automatic and tuned for low end torque, it felt much stronger than its 135hp/135tq rating around town. I live with a lot of hills, so torque is welcome.

      My ’17 Golf is the same way, with the 1.8T tuned for low end power, but it is a 5 speed manual. On the highway at anything above 60mph, I can set the cruise and not have to downshift from 5th except for the steepest hills. At 70 or more, I don’t have to downshift at all.

      Mileage isn’t bad 33mpg all highway, but I know the TDI VW’s were easily in 40’s in the same condition. But, then there was the “unpleasantness”…

      I remember Toyota’s “value leader” experiment with the 150hp 2.7 four in the Sienna minivan. Having had a Sienna SE for 3 years, I would rather have had a turbo 4 with around 250hp and 250 torque tuned for low end, than the 296hp/ 250 torque of the 3.5 V6, but with peaks of around 6000 and 4300 rpm’s respectively.

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