Last year was a bountiful season for truck fans, with two of the Detroit Three introducing new iterations of their half-ton pickups. The twelve months ahead promise an equal amount of abundance – except this time, OEMs are doling out treats from the Heavy Duty cupboard.
Back in September, your humble author opined on this website that he would “not be surprised if Ram is the first manufacturer to crest 1,000 lb-ft of torque in a consumer truck.” Color us unsurprised, then, as the new 2019 Ram Heavy Duty pickup will indeed be available with four-figure torque.
If you need to get somewhere off the beaten path just that much more quickly than The Other Guy – or maybe you simply want to one-up your neighbor and their new Sierra AT4 – GMC has an answer for you.
Despite being only about three seconds old, The General is already throwing a new package at the 2019 Sierra. Meant to layer on top of the off-road focused AT4 trim, this new option adds even more horses to the hand-of-god 6.2-liter V8.
And, for once, buyers actually save money by selecting the option package. Speed normally costs money – but not this time.
Ford announced some HR news today, saying that Trevor Worthington has been appointed vice president, Global Product Development Operations & Vehicle Programs. Worthington has served as veep of Product Development for Asia Pacific since 2013. You may recognize that part of the Ford empire as the area which just got the Ranger Raptor.
Also today, Ford product guru and prolific tweeter Mike Levine promised “Some cool Ford Truck news coming later this week.”
Coincidence? We think not!
For the majority of this year, Ram fans have been limited to a single choice of powertrain in the new 2019 Ram 1500 pickup truck. The stalwart and sonorous 5.7-liter Hemi V8 was the sole available selection for ages, with the eTorque-assisted V6 and V8 motors scarce on the ground until recently.
The feds have at last doffed their cloak from over the eTorque V6 and officially stamped an EPA mileage rating on it. Buyers satisfied with a two-wheel-drive truck powered by six cylinders will find themselves in command of a pickup rated at 25 mpg.
Today, readers, we learn the value of keeping browser tabs open. This is a more fruitful activity than, say, leaving a bag of potato chips open — which inevitably leads to soggy crisps.
While viewing the not-yet-ready-for-public-consumption Ford Ranger on Tuesday, a site promptly pulled down by the Blue Oval, we learned of the upcoming midsize truck’s (estimated) pricing and (likely) options packages. The page was largely devoid of interior shots, however. Until now.
The F-150 Limited – which is, naturally, limited only to the number they can sell – currently sits atop the truck’s totem pole, usurping the King Ranch and Platinum as the most expensive half-ton F-Series pickup. This will last until the boffins at Ford dream up a new super-lux trim called the Rhodium Precious Bullion Edition.
Recognizing that folks who have the means to lay out nearly a hundred grand on a pickup want the most powerful engine available, the Blue Oval has decided to plug the Raptor’s powertrain between the Limited’s fenders. This means that 450 horsepower and 510 lb-ft of torque are now at the disposal of drivers who prefer sumptuous leather seats instead of desert-busting suspensions.
Ford has paused production of the F-150 at its Kansas City Assembly Plant after a fire at one of the facilities belonging a Michigan-based supplier created a parts shortage. Meridian Lightweight Technologies makes instrument panel components for the pickup.
Roughly 3,600 unionized plant workers at the Kansas City facility have been told to cool their heels at home from May 7th to 14th, according to an Automotive News report.
Look at the truck shown above. Blacked-out grille and bumpers, old-school phone dial steel wheels of a reasonable size, and an honest, hardworking cleat system on the outside of the bed. I’d drive it and I’m pretty sure you would, too. Raise your hand if I’m correct.
Hear that Ford? Approximately 100 percent of the American public TTAC readers would sign the note on a base model Ranger. The SuperCrews you showed us in January were a good start, now stop teasing us with overseas mini-Raptors and please whip up a base model.
Keeping with Ford’s naming tradition, I’m dubbing this the Ranger XL.
Ram announced pricing today for its snazzy new 1500 pickup and, while the relentless upward march of MRSPs continues unabated, starting prices may not have risen as much as you may think.
Critically, Ram also saw fit to release the costs for upgrading to their intriguing eTorque Hemi, a power team that promises the trucker’s holy grail – extra low-end grunt for hauling and increased fuel economy on the highway.
Hewing to another law of retailing, while base prices for the 2019 model haven’t moved the needle significantly from last year’s sticker, 2018 models now enjoy large rebates in some markets.
Most truck owners customize their rigs to some degree – witness the multimillion dollar aftermarket industry and the popularity of SEMA. Not to mention the existence of Truck Nutz.
Ram, after refurbishing the 1500 pickup in an effort to quash its competition like beetles under its tires, wants in on some of that high profit action. Today, at the Chicago Auto Show, the company unveiled a passel of Mopar gear for its snazzy new truck.
The third-generation Toyota Hilux, sold in the United States as the Toyota Truck or Toyota Pickup (remember, this is the extremely un-frivolous company that, even today, sells a luxury sedan called the LS), achieved legend status very early in its career. An 800,000-mile example will be equally comfortable hauling a dozen or two Taliban fighters through the wilds of North Waziristan or a ton of discarded bicycles and box-springs through the streets of San Jose.
Here’s one of the latter occupation, spotted last spring in a self-service yard in the heart of Silicon Valley.
The third-generation Toyota Hilux pickup (called the “Toyota Truck” in the United States) was a legend of reliability and frugality well into our current century, and plenty of small motorhomes were built on its sturdy platform. You’ll still see them occasionally today, but the skin-crawling ickiness of tenth-owner RVs tends to mean the end comes quickly when they wear out. Here’s one that took nearly 40 years to reach that point, now residing in The Final Campground: a self-service wrecking yard near Denver.
It’s better than a 1937 Nash Lafayette, though fuel economy — in real world driving — seems to be slightly less, if I’m to believe the results of the Mobilgas Economy Run.
I’m referring to my great-grandfather’s 1937 (or ’38) Lafayette, a fixture of my mother’s otherwise carless childhood in postwar Baby Boom Alberta. What brought up this unlikely comparison, you ask? What could a technology-laden 2017 Ford F-150 King Ranch pickup possibly have in common with a six-cylinder Depression-era sedan?
Running boards. In my mother’s earliest memories, the running boards of her granddad’s car were fixed, spanning the distance between two fenders dulled by Prairie dust and providing easy access to the spartan cabin of a long-lived touring car. In the Ford’s case, they’re electrically operated, lowering into place upon the opening of any of the pickup’s doors, then receding out of sight below the rockers, propelled by engineering ingenuity and cash.
It’s an option I’ve always found ridiculous, especially in a climate where road salt is a depressing reality. I like a fixed board. Nothing fancy. However, to my mom, who I chauffeured to a Mother’s Day meal in the King Ranch, that feature alone was enough to make her consider pulling a bank job to meet the truck’s MSRP.
With this particular truck, payload capacity and off-road prowess is an afterthought.
Because of Ford’s new patent, we may soon wonder how we ever got anything out of our truck beds.
Ford has filed for a patent for a “sliding platform” in the bed of pickup trucks. The platform will be powered by a drive assembly, labeled an electric machine, coupled to the engine and transmission, possibly from a hybrid F-150.
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- Sgeffe I'm wondering if any tooling or whatnot from the original was used in the production of this beast.
- Sgeffe I usually pass by the UCOTD posts, but I had to ask on this: what, pray tell, is with the sideview mirrors off a C5 Corvette??!! Yikes!
- Joseph Kissel I foresee ICE and EV co-existing for many, many years. But to answer the OP, who's going to be the automaker that sinks considerable funding into a NEXT-GEN ICE engine and vehicle platform? Which would also mean diverting that research from a next-gen EV battery / platform. In that regard, is BMW doing the right thing by releasing ICE and EV on a shared platform? Because I can see automakers putting lightly re-freshed ICE vehicles on the market (and maybe that's all that's needed at this point) ... But will we truly ever see something next-gen on the ICE front?
- Sgeffe It still boggles my pea brain that something that was pretty much standard on most cars two decades ago was left off of cars in the early teens! BUT if I understand things correctly, Canadian models had the immobilizers! (Along with heated steering wheels and other bits that would never be found on a car bound for, say, Minneapolis!)
- CEastwood Yep this is the bolt screwers last chance at the big money before all their jobs become extinct to robots and outsourcing to low wage countries . Prediction - they will get some compromise between what they want and what real world economics dictate . Then the car companies will gradually move their operations to other countries or southern states without unions . They are hastening the loss of their jobs and don't seem to care or even be aware of it .