INDIANAPOLIS. Ford is upgrading its complete commercial vehicle lineup and squeezing in a new F-series nameplate. In a move that began with refreshed Transit Connect compact vans in 2019, the nation’s top commercial vehicle seller will have an entirely new commercial vehicle lineup, from Class 1 to Class 7, by 2020.
The OEM unveiled several of its refreshed trucks and debuted the all-new F-600 Super Duty chassis cab, a Class 6 truck designed to have a smaller feel, during the NTEA Work Truck Show at the Indiana Convention Center on Tuesday night.
“It’s not every day that you add a nameplate to the iconic F-Series. It’s a big deal," Mike Pruitt, the Ford Super Duty chief engineer, said during a Ford media preview in Detroit in February. "This F-600 hits the sweet spot in the market… Customers no longer have to choose between a truck that doesn’t have enough payload or a truck that’s too big.”
He said the F-600 is built to go where bigger trucks can’t. F-600 works like a Class 6 truck – it has a maximum GVWR of 22,000 lbs. – but comes in a Class 5 Ford Super Duty package. It's designed for commercial customers who want additional payload or need to mount heavier upfits but don’t want to move into a larger truck. Ford designed the F-600 for those who wanted an F-550 cab with an F-650’s power.
Although the overall vehicle is the same size as an F-550, F-600 uses upgraded driveline and chassis components as well as higher-weight-rated 19.5-in. tires and wheels to help it achieve a higher GVWR. Ford will offer the F-600 with both a gasoline or diesel powertrains and 4x2 or 4x4 drivetrains. The OEM said it can be ordered in early 2020 and will be available in mid-2020.
The OEM is also rolling out updates to Transit, Super Duty chassis cab, Medium Duty trucks, E-Series and stripped chassis. Ford’s entire commercial vehicle lineup refresh began 13 months ago with the introduction of the 2019 Transit Connect. Ford is the only full-line manufacturer of commercial vehicles in Classes 1-7.
“For 34 years, Ford has consistently sold more commercial vehicles every year than any other manufacturer because we listen to our customers then get to work developing the products and technologies they need,” said Mark Buzzell, Ford director of fleet, lease and remarketing operations. “The updates we’re announcing today were driven by our customers’ focus on improving safety, reducing cost, and increasing uptime and productivity. Giving our customers the freshest lineup plus driver-assist technologies and connectivity is a great example of Ford delivering smart vehicles for a smart world.”
All Ford commercial vehicle product lines are updated with standard modems with 4G LTE Wi-Fi for up to 10 devices. New Ford Telematics and Ford Data Services are available across the lineup to help commercial customers operate their fleets more efficiently. Ford Telematics and Data Services enable fleet managers to enhance uptime and asset utilization, optimize running costs, improve driver behavior, and protect their fleets using Ford OEM-grade telematics software, integrating with the company’s existing telematics service provider or taking vehicle data directly into their own IT systems.
Smart driver-assist technologies
Automatic emergency braking is standard on 2020 Transit and 2019 Transit Connect and available across the rest of Ford’s commercial vehicle lineup.
Additional elements of Ford Co-Pilot360 technologies become available on Ford commercial vehicles for the new model year. For F-650 and F-750 medium duty trucks, plus E-Series and F-53 and F-59 stripped chassis, traction control, hill start assist and auto headlamps are standard. Options on these lines include adaptive cruise control, electronic stability control, lane departure warning, Driver Alert System and auto high-beam headlamps. Super Duty chassis cab have standard auto high-beam headlamps and available lane departure warning.
Transit adds standard forward collision warning, post-collision braking, Lane-Keeping System and auto high-beam headlamps. New available driver-assist technology for Transit includes adaptive cruise control, Blind Spot Information System with trailer coverage, enhanced active park assist, side sensing system, front and rear split-view camera and adjustable speed limiting device.
New 7.3-liter V8 engine
Ford’s all-new 7.3-liter V8 gasoline engine that debuted last month in F-Series Super Duty pickups is also available in Super Duty chassis cab, F-650 and F-750 medium-duty trucks, E-Series, and F-53 and F-59 stripped chassis. This 7.3-liter V8 generates more torque and power than the 6.8-liter V10 engine it replaces. Its compact package provides greater maintenance access for technicians and because it has two fewer cylinders, it also uses fewer parts than the outgoing V10, resulting in less downtime at the shop and lower long-term ownership costs. Based on decades of commercial engine experience, the 7.3-liter uses an all-new cam-in-block, overhead-valve architecture with cast iron block and forged steel crankshaft for maximum durability. Port injection with variable-valve timing optimizes the intake and exhaust to match performance with workload. Oil jets cool the pistons under heavy loads.
New for 2020 Super Duty chassis cab, Ford will offer three engines:
- 7.3-liter gas V8;
- Third-generation 6.7-liter Power Stroke diesel; or
- 6.2-liter gas V8.
A new 10-speed TorqShift automatic transmission is available across all engine offerings with available live-drive power takeoff provision with up to 300 lb.-ft. of torque.
Transit drives ahead
Transit upgrades include two all-new engines mated to a new standard 10-speed transmission designed to improve fuel efficiency over 2019 Transit, available all-wheel drive to provide enhanced traction on icy, snowy or muddy roads; and additional seating options.
In addition to cargo van, passenger van, chassis cab and cutaway models, a new crew van with seating for five joins the lineup. Three-across front seating is also available.
Exterior updates include an available power sliding door for Transit cargo van and passenger van, as well as three new grilles. Interior accommodations are upgraded with new fabrics, a new instrument panel and available 8-inch touch screen with SYNC 3.
F-650 and F-750 Medium Duty
Ford is the only manufacturer to offer both gas and diesel engines in its Class 6-7 trucks. It has a new 7.3-liter gas engine and 6.7-liter Power Stroke V8 diesel in the Medium Duty trucks. Both engines are mated to Ford’s 6-speed TorqShift heavy-duty automatic transmission.
An updated instrument panel includes a new steering column, wheel and cluster, while new standard AM/FM stereo radio with Bluetooth functionality and USB ports. Production of model year 2021 F-650 and F-750 begins in early January 2020.
E-Series has been in continuous production for 58 years with more than 2.7 million vehicles still on the road. Available in cutaway and stripped chassis models that are used for applications like shuttle buses, ambulances and small RVs, E-Series gets updated with new content for 2021. An updated interior features a refreshed instrument panel including new cluster, steering wheel and standard AM/FM stereo radio with Bluetooth functionality and USB ports. A new upfitter interface module provides a more seamless experience with installed equipment.
Two unique engine calibrations for the all-new 7.3-liter V8 engine let E-Series customers choose the best horsepower and torque application for their needs. A best-in-class maximum GVWR of 14,500 pounds lets E-Series carry the heaviest van upfits or RV chassis.