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FORD KEEPS ON TRUCKIN'

This article is from our archives and has not been updated and integrated with our "new" site yet... Even so, it's still awesome - so keep reading!

Published on Wed, Apr 22, 2009

By: The LACar Editorial Staff

FORD KEEPS ON TRUCKIN' By Harold Osmer I like Ford trucks. And Ford insists on producing trucks that make it impossible to change my point of view. Our test 2009 F-150 came in a basic black clearcoat with black leather captain's chairs, black leather wrapped steering wheel, and chrome step bar. The well-equipped standard vehicle price of $34,845 was boosted by a smattering of options to $38,960. F-150s are available in six different trim levels built on two platforms of either 145 inch wheelbase or the longer 157-inch version. Ours was of the 145-inch variety, roughly 30 inches longer than a typical sedan. There is no confusing this vehicle with a sedan.

A commanding view of the road comes at the price of having to climb into and down from the cab. Inside, the truck at once welcomes you. Front captain's chairs adjust 10 ways and are electronically controlled for both driver and passenger, with a memory function for the driver. Rear seating is more than adequate for three adults. The folding rear seats split 60/40 and fold up with a simple motion to provide inside cargo room. Controls, gauges, and switches are logically located and within easy reach. Dual range climate control, Sirius-equipped stereo radio, and other onboard electronic systems were straightforward and simple to operate. One cannot overemphasize the importance of this. Ford's 5.4L V8 produces 310 horsepower at 5000RPM and 365 lb-ft of torque at 3500RPM. Coupled to a 6-speed electronically controlled automatic transmission, power comes on smooth and predictable. Roll the throttle on and feel the torque. If you stand on the gas, be sure to be pointed where you want to go, this thing will get up in a hurry. Towing capacity is rated at 7100 pounds via a Class IV hitch. The standard Towing Prep Package includes wiring provisions, upgraded radiator, auxiliary transmission oil cooler, and trailer sway control system.

We drove our test vehicle sans trailer and found the ride better than expected. Handling is precise, controls worked as advertised, and after adjusting our approach to the F-150's sheer size, road manners were excellent. A slight bounciness (to be expected) revealed itself when traveling empty down the freeway. A curb weight of 5314 pounds should yield poor fuel economy numbers. Our truck's onboard system at week's end read an overall average 17.1 MPG. There are many modern sedans on the road today that can only dream of such numbers while lacking the comfort, size, and versatility of an F-150 Supercrew. Two additional notes before moving on: First, we found an electronic door lock option in the control menu. This enables a driver to have doors automatically lock when driving or remain unlocked. Such a simple, welcomed feature! Second, Ford is now offering their Tailgate Step on the F-150 line as a $350 option. This allows an owner to extend a step from the tailgate to assist when getting into and out of the bed. Wonderful feature. Comfort, size, stability, versatility, MPG(!), and a commanding view of the road make the 2009 F-150 Supercrew a winner. This is one test vehicle I would have liked to keep.

SUMMARY JUDGMENT Detroit really knows how to make a good pickup truck, and there's plenty of good reasons why the F-150 is at the top of the food chain. For more information about Ford products, go to www.fordvehicles.com

SPECIFICATIONS Name of vehicle: 2009 SD F-150 4x2 Supercrew 145-in. WB Lariat Styleside Price: Base $34,845, as tested $38,960 options include: 3.55 Limited slip axle 7100#GVWR Package ($435), Chrome Step Bar ($495), Lariat Plus Package ($795), Leather Trimmed Seats ($895) Engine type: 5.4L V8 SOHC, SEFI Horsepower: [email protected] rpm Torque: 365 lb-ft @ 3500 rpm EPA mileage estimates City/ Highway: 14/20 Drive configuration: Front engine / two wheel drive Transmission type: 6-speed Automatic Overdrive, Electronically controlled 3.55:1 limited slip axle Console mounted shifter with Tow/Haul Mode Suspension: Front: Independent Double Wishbone with Coil Springs and Gas Charged Shock Absorbers Rear: Live Hotchkiss-Type with Leaf Springs and Gas Charged Shock Absorbers Wheels and tires: LT275/55R20 All-season Brakes: 4-Wheel Anti-Lock Brakes Front Power 330-mm Vented Disc Rear Power 348-mm Vented Disc Brakes Overall length/wheelbase: 231.7 inches/144.4 inches Overall width: 78.9 inches Overall height: 74.3 inches 3 Year/36,000 mile Bumper to Bumper 5 Year/60,000 Powertrain 5 Year/60,000 Roadside Assist

American Trucks specializes in F150 performance. Find the best parts and prices at AmericanTrucks.com.

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