New F-150 also gets over-the-air updates and Ford’s SYNC 4
Ford has shown the new, 2021 model year F-150. Production won’t start until September and the media preview event saw no firm news about engines and gearboxes, with the exception of what the company is calling 3.5L PowerBoost, a gasoline-electric engine and motor combination available with RWD or 4WD.
The 3.5-litre V6 is linked to a SelectShift-branded ten-speed automatic transmission, while the 35 kilowatt (47 horsepower) motor is integrated into the transmission and is meant to offer not only extra torque but the ability to be used to charge tools or anything else.
The generator is called Pro Power Onboard and has an output of 2.4 kW or an optional 7.2 kW. There are sockets in the cabin as well as up to four cargo bed-mounted 120 V 20 amp outlets. Further, trucks specified with the 7.2 kW option have a 240 volt 30 amp socket.
Another part of the hybrid system is regenerative braking. This harvests otherwise lost kinetic energy and stores it in a 1.5 kWh battery positioned under the vehicle which means no cargo or interior room is sacrificed.
Ford says it expects the EPA will rate the hybrid powertrain as offering up to 700 miles and at least 12,000 pounds of maximum towing capacity.
Rather than being a standalone variant, the hybrid is to be available for all six trim levels: XL, XLT, Lariat, King Ranch, Platinum and Limited. Additionally, there are three cab styles and 13 wheel options (17 to 22 inches) as well as 11 grille options.
Even though the new truck looks a lot like the old one, every one of the again aluminium panels is fresh although the 2021 model uses a revamped version of the thirteenth generation’s architecture.
On the inside, there is an 8-inch touchscreen on lower model grades and 12-inch screen for more expensive variants. The optional Max Recline Seats (King Ranch, Platinum, and Limited) fold flat to almost 180 degrees, allowing driver and/or passenger to sleep in the truck.
Production of the 2021 F-150 had been scheduled to start at Dearborn Truck on 17 August. Due to COVID-19, this became 28 September and now, 12 October.
As well as build at the site in Michigan near Ford’s world headquarters, Kansas City Assembly Plant will also manufacture the new model. This facility, which is in Claycomo, Missouri, should start series production on 9 November (after two earlier dates in September, then October, were cancelled).
New editions of the F-Series Heavy Duty trucks are not part of the range: their replacements are likely still a year away. The same applies to the F-150 Raptor, which won’t be replaced until the 2022 model year. The rugged Raptor will need to given a major power and torque boost for it to stand a chance of competing with FCA’s imminent 2021 Ram TRX (Tyrannosaurus rex).