The Ford F-150 is the highest selling vehicle in the market - not Toyota Camry or Honda Accord, and Ford has a lot riding on the success of this work truck. This week during the North American International Auto Show the company rolled out the 2015 Ford F-150. We've rounded up what we could to show you the new truck and detail the new features outlined in press materials offered this week.
The key is the weight-saving use of aluminum, which Ford says saved about 700 pounds. In a Wall Street Journal article (subscribers only) details included the fact that Ford thinks the new truck will hit 27 mpg on the highway, beating out the Ram 1500 with its currently leading 25 mpg. The battle for the hearts and minds of the pickup owner rest not in hauling capacity and bed size but also fuel economy and Ford made a bet on aluminum.
We got a glimpse of the new Ford F-150 at the 2013 Farm Progress Show, and we've included a shot of the Atlas prototype in this gallery as a first. The Atlas prototype showed off the styling hints that came to be reality in the new pickup. So check out the following images where we detail the truck, engines and some of the technology advancements the company has piled into this new machine.
The truck features a range of new items and technologies not offered in a pickup before including a 360-degree camera view, a new cargo storage system, LED headlamps and taillamps, trailer hitch assist, a smart trailer two function and even a remote tailgate control.
Engine power comes from two new EcoBoost choices - a 2.7 liter and a 3.5 liter, which we expand upon in this gallery, and you'll find out more about two other engine choices too. So click on the images below and read the descriptions above to learn more about the 2015 Ford F-150 pickup.
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1. An Atlas preview
<p>This Atlas concept pickup was sheltered under an overhang at the 2013 Farm Progress Show. You'd almost miss it if you weren't looking for it. But it's clear from this concept that engineers had their minds made up. The more aggressive nose and other features have made it into the 2015 model.</p>
2. From the Front
<p>The new 2015 Ford F-150 pickup has a high-strength steel frame and a high-strength aluminum alloy body that's already seen 10 million miles of testing. According to the media kit, that boxed ladder frame uses more high-strength steel than ever to make it tougher, yet lighter (which boosts fuel economy). As for the body, the company turned to high-strength, military-grade aluminum alloys that are are used in other industries including aerospace and commercial transportation. The aluminum is used throughout the body which is a first for the F-150. The company says the move also reduced worries over dents and dings, and it saves weight. In fact, the truck is 700 lbs. lighter, which apparently allows the truck to haul more, accelerate quicker and stop shorter.</p>
3. Going away
<p>The rear profile is changed for the vehicle too. The company notes that this truck has gone through plenty of 'torture testing' in labs, at the Ford proving grounds and with some demanding customers. Total travel for those tests was 10 million miles. The aim was to subject the truck to the same tough challenges a customer would, but compress the time to get a handle on any issues that might arise. In fact a disguised F-150 ran the Baha 1000 and it completed all 883 miles while some designed just for the race failed. Read on to learn more about the engine choices offered in the new machine.</p>
4. Chassis at a glance
<p>From high-strength steel - with a 70,000-psi rating - Ford has created a new lighter-weight chassis that can still haul and two more, while being more fuel efficient. High-strength steel was part of the frame in the past, it's the percentage that's changed. Today 77% of the frame is high-strength, and is was just 23% in the past. The new frame is 60 pounds lighter than the current frame, Ford says.</p>
5. EcoBoost 2.7 Liter engine
<p>Ford has pioneered some interesting technology with its line of EcoBoost engines. The latest is an all new 2.7-liter V6 engine with high output and lightweight design. And it's paired with Auto Start-Stop technology that's optimized for trucks. If you've never driven a vehicle with auto-stop/start it takes some getting used to. However, it saves fuel. The idea is that when you stop at a light, the truck shuts off, release the break and the car starts instantly and drives. However, Ford does this one better, the truck won't shut off when you're towing a load, or when in four-wheel drive. The 2.7-liter EcoBoost features the first use of a compacted graphite iron cylinder block in a gasoline engine. This is the same material the company uses in the 6.7-liter Power Stroke turbo-diesel V8 found on the Super Duty F Series. That composite CGI/aluminum block saves weight. And the engine features all new logic that adjusts operating parameters on the fly, all for better efficiency. The list of new ideas and approaches in the new 2.7-liter engine is with a range of features never used on a six-cylinder engine. And it was this engine that powered that secret Baha 1000 pickup that finished the race.</p>
6. EcoBoost 3.5-liter engine
<p>This handy performer returns and offers the same solid-performing features it has since it was first introduced. This gives buyers two EcoBoost choices when it comes to engine buying time. Specs on the 2015 version are limited, but expect it to be a competent hauler. Ford has a lot riding on the success of this truck. The 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine, launched less than three years ago, has already topped 425,000 units sold in the U.S. and accounts for about 35% of all F-150 sales. It'll be interesting to see how the new 2.7-liter engine sells.</p>
7. All new 3.5-liter performer
<p>Ford has replaced the current 3.7-liter naturally aspirated V6 with a new 3.5-liter version that uses twin independent variable camshaft timing to get a flat torque curve and better efficiency. The new engine offers sequential multiport fuel injection and booth an aluminum block and head. It's also rated as a flex-fuel vehicle and can burn E85 for power.</p>
8. More power - in a V8
<p>And Ford is improving the 5-liter V8, though they're skimpy on details. This will also be a flex fuel engine that can run regular or up to E85. The new V8 gets improved cylinder breathing and a new mid-lock variable cam timing to boost fuel economy while maintaining what Ford calls "tow-friendly torque."</p>
9. Big interior
<p>Pickup makers long ago figured out the truck is an office on wheels, and the new F-150 doesn't diverge farm from the idea. The new control panel of the truck offers a range of features and access to new tech including the first truck in its class to use LED lighting. That display screen in the center of the console, when part of a package that includes the 360-degree view camera system, offers better visibility than ever offered for a pickup Ford claims. The dash display is computer generated, so you can decide which gauges you want to see when towing or off-roading. You'll have a range of options from which to choose.</p>
10. Screen closeup
<p>Big screens aren't for the family room anymore, they're for the pickup dashboard, and this 8-in. screen for the 2015 F-150 is no exception. In the higher-trim level models this screen is your central data system, and when you have the 360-degree camera option, you'll be able to see everything around you.</p>
11. Better hauling
<p>Ford is expanding that step gate so it sticks out farther when needed, in addition they've added LED lighting in the bed - which you can see here on the left of the bed. In addition, they've created a new system they call BoxLink, which is a combination of metal brackets and custom cleats to secure a range of accessories in the cargo box - from ramps to storage bins to bed dividers. And integrated loading ramps are available so you can haul your favorite ATV into the back country for some riding. And the tailgate step has been upgraded too, yet it's easy to deploy, just drop the tailgate into the down position, grab the bottom step, pull it straight out from the tailgate and drop it down into the step position.</p>
12. Easy loading
<p>You have to think about this one for a moment, but this is the new 2015 Super Cab from the side and it features a flat-load floor and a rear door that opens nearly 180 degrees. That'll make it easier to place cargo into the vehicle when space is tight.</p>
13. Stay in your lane
<p>Ford is incorporating some interesting systems into the new F-150 including a lane-keeping assist that "sees" lane markings and if you drift the system will alert you right away, even providing the steering torque needed to put your truck back into the center of the lane as needed.</p>
14. Blind spot system
<p>Pickups, no matter how well designed, have blind spots and Ford engineers know this. They've created a Blind Spot Information System with a cross-traffic alert that helps detect vehicles in the blind spots during normal driving and even when backing out of a parking spot.</p>