The iconic truck returns after almost a two-decade absence in the Philippine market
Just when you think that the big pickup has left the local market for good, the Ford F150 Pickup series is rumbling back after a two-decade hiatus. Still enjoying its long iconic reputation among the different markets, it was, an still is, a status symbol –gas prices be damned.
The new model is a far cry from its popular predecessor; the new version is optioned out with a myriad of safety features as well as numerous drivers’ aid. And most importantly, better fuel economy despite its humongous size.
Let’s get down to business: Now equipped with a smaller: V6, many will ask about the V8 engine. While it’s still available in the US and other foreign markets, we have to settle for the 6-banger. But make no mistake about it, the 3.5 liter Ecoboost V6 engine is up to the task. Boasting a muscular 375hp and 637Nm of torque, it will put older powertrains to shame. And with 3 different drive modes, you can actually customize your trip; from frugal to real power.
The 10-speed automatic transmission is the only tranny available on all Ford trucks. Taking advantage of the engine’s high output, it can pull heavy loads, as well as speed up on highways. High speed cruising is actually economical – 100kph at a measly 1,300rpm. Remember also that it has a minimum conventional towing capacity of 5,000 lbs. and a maximum tow rating of 13,200 lbs.
The design profile of the F150 is pretty straightforward, muscular and devoid of any curves, save for the wheel openings. The grille is very imposing, accented by thick horizontal bars that reach to the two-tier LED headlights. Bumper and valance panel are integrated into one, giving a smooth uninterrupted fascia.
The rear is also uncomplicated, with large LED taillights giving rear illumination. The gate is wide enough for big cargo. And don’t worry about the weight of the gate; it is equipped with soft opening dampers that slow down the dropping rate. The platinum variant offers a stepboard and hold support bar for easy ingress/egress at the cargo bed.
The rear roof panel houses the third brake light, that also houses the rear cargo illuminators, a cinch for loading in the dark.
Completing the look, the big 275/55/R20 fits the F150 just right. The combination provides stability for the big rig, and also capable for loading and towing. The All-season tires are also quiet during high-speeds.
The interior is cathedral like. Generous space on all corners that even basketball players can be seated comfortably. The F150 is so wide that the center console is almost a whopping 9in wide. The seats, in Black leather with white stitching are very comfortable, with the front seats having a 10-way power adjust. (Driver seat has memory feature). Front and rear seats also have climate control. The seats offer excellent lumbar and leg support, and the rear seats are nicely angled for a more relaxed seating position.
Features that matter
- Multiple cup holders,
- Front and rear passenger 220V outlets for powering laptops or charging gadgets.
- A 360-degree camera system
- Parking sensors on all four corners
- 8-inch infotainment system with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay integration, with a Bang and Olufsen sound system that produces top notch music quality
- Anti Theft System
- Perimeter alarm,
- Front and rear parking sensors
- Front Collision alert
- Hill start assist
- Curve control
- Trailer sway control, Rain-sensing wipers,
- Blind-spot monitoring
- Remote keyless system with remote start functionality.
- Front-seat side airbags, side-curtain airbags
- ABS with EBD
- Automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control
Despite its imposing size, the F150 Lariat is surprisingly easy to drive. During a long trip to the north, this Pickup felt more like an SUV instead of a truck. Ride was comfortable and road noise was virtually non-existent. Power was more than adequate, even in eco mode.
When pressed, the F150 can speed up to 100kph in no time; the growl of the engine is wild, especially when reaching 2500 rpm. You can feel the 375 horses pulling out, resulting in pin-to-the-seat acceleration and a naughty smile.
The 360º cameras and perimeter alarm is the most useful-and most important feature here. A wrong turn to a narrow inner street proved to be an easy task for both driver and truck. The display is very accurate; up to 2 inches of clearance is discernible on the screen. The author managed to maneuver through the street crowded with cars and people, with the help of the cameras and display. That alone has my vote.
Priced at PHP 2,698,000 for the Lariat and PHP2,998,000 for the Platiunum 4×4, its surprisingly affordable. In fact, the prices are too close to the Ford Ranger Raptor, which is priced at PHP2M. The difference is more than worth it. You’re getting much more of a truck than you think. The size is the only limiting factor here. Well, others may think its an advantage. Whatever your reasons may be, the F150 is here to stay.
Visit Ford Global City and get to see the iconic F150 in the flesh!!!
Text: Earl Manalansan
Pics: Lightstroked Images