Lightweight materials, new engines and a newly available 10-speed automatic transmission up the ante for the 2018 Ford F-150 on performance, capability and efficiency, according to Ford Motor Co.
The latest enhancements are a result of Ford's investment years ago in high-strength aluminum alloy bodies and high-strength steel frames, the company says. That helped save up to 700 lbs. on the new F-150, which also means customers can tow and haul more with their trucks.
Since then, Ford has expanded use of aluminum alloy bodies and steel frames to the latest F-Series Super Duty heavy-duty pickup trucks. The resulting weight savings are augmented by new and improved engines.
2018 Ford F-150
Customers have purchased 75% of new Ford trucks this year with V6 engines, according to the company. The 2018 F-150 arrives with a more capable powertrain lineup and more V6 choices.
For 2018, Ford is introducing a smaller, more efficient 3.3L V6 that delivers more power and torque than the previous 3.5L V6 in addition to improved projected EPA-estimated gas mileage.
Aiding in light-weighting, the standard 3.3L V6 in the 2018 F-150 is projected to offer a 5% power-to-weight ratio improvement versus the steel-bodied 2014 F-150 equipped with 3.7L V6 along with better anticipated fuel efficiency and performance.
Meanwhile, a next-generation 2.7L EcoBoost engine boasts an increase in torque of 25 lbs.-ft., and at lower engine speeds compared to a traditional V8. Like the second-generation 3.5L EcoBoost that debuted last model year, the 2.7L will be paired to a 10-speed automatic transmission for 2018.
The 5.0L V8 also gets some enhancements for 2018. This naturally aspirated engine includes dual-port and direct-injection technology for 10 more hp and a gain of 13 lbs.-ft. of torque. The V8 also features spray-on bore liner technology featured in the high-performance Mustang GT350, Ford explains, "all to squeeze out even more weight from the aluminum block."
The V8 is paired with a Ford-built 10-speed automatic transmission for the first time. EPA-estimated fuel economy will be announced closer to market availability, Ford says.
The 2018 F-150 also has an available 3.0L Power Stroke V6 diesel that was designed, engineered and tested in-house, according to the company. That engine option is paired with the 10-speed automatic. The first diesel engine offered for F-150 will be available next spring.