Ford’s 2023 F-series Tremendous Obligation has develop into the Porsche 911 of industrial quality pickups. Every affords no fewer than 18 fashions, has at the very least three engine choices and 4 energy outputs, sends torque to both the rear or all 4 tires, and is arguably one of the best at serving its total mission. However not like the 911, the Tremendous Obligation is about as widespread as an Apple iPhone. They’re on development websites, farms, and oil fields, towing boats and RVs, and parked in your neighbor’s driveway.
Although Ford is fast to throw the “all-new” stamp at its fifth-generation F-series Tremendous Obligation, the truck is extra of an evolution than a totally new huge rig. Beneath, the body, underpinnings, brakes, and driveline parts (except for a newly accessible 11.6-inch rear axle) go largely unchanged. The outside, nonetheless, options edgier aluminum sheetmetal, and every trim will be recognized by its particular fascia and design parts.
Throughout the spacious cabin, the F-series enters the fashionable period of tech-laden pickups by appropriating parts from the F-150. The XL now comes customary with an 8.0-inch infotainment touchscreen, whereas an even bigger 12.0-inch unit is reserved for the XLT (as an possibility) and past (as customary). A high-speed 5G knowledge connection permits fast streaming to maintain younger ones occupied with YouTube Children or when it is time to make the most of the accessible Inside Work Floor and tether into the workplace. An accessible head-up show is a Tremendous Obligation first, as is a digital instrument cluster that may be custom-made to indicate extra knowledge than one may ever want.
Ford’s 2.0-kW Professional Energy Onboard is newly accessible on the Tremendous Obligation to supply energy to the job website or camper. Driver-assist programs resembling adaptive cruise management and lane-keeping help are provided, however probably the most welcome upgrades are discovered within the tailgate, which now will be had with energy opening and shutting capabilities. It additionally cleverly applies present know-how to unravel an previous downside. Should you’ve ever tried backing up with the tailgate down, chances are high you’ve got run into one thing as a result of the backup digicam faces the bottom and the sonar sensors cannot compensate for the additional size of the lowered gate. The tailgate now will be had with sensors and a digicam within the prime rail, thus eliminating backing into that mound of dust or loading dock.
When Ford launched Godzilla—its pushrod, 16-valve 7.3-liter V-8—it was a breath of recent air in a world gone mad with electrification. That 430-hp V-8 with 485 pound-feet of torque carries over and is joined by one other new V-8 for 2023. The brand new 6.8-liter is a short-stroke 7.3-liter with its personal crankshaft, connecting rods, and pistons. Changing the venerable 385-hp 6.2-liter, it produces 400 horsepower and 445 pound-feet. It is unique to the XL trim and is primarily meant for fleet use.
The Energy Stroke turbocharged 6.7-liter diesel V-8 stays the bread-and-butter engine within the lineup. Its 475 horsepower and 1050 pound-feet of torque already had the bragging rights by way of output and in our testing propelled a 2020 F-250 Tremor to the highest of the rostrum by way of acceleration. To deal with increased temperatures, stainless-steel manifolds and piping feed a single turbo with a liquid-cooled compressor housing to permit extra enhance. With larger consumption strain, the Energy Stroke Excessive Output now generates a monstrous 500 horsepower and 1200 pound-feet.
A ten-speed computerized is the one transmission provided, albeit in two variations. The 6.8-liter gasser contains a completely different gearset from the one hooked to Godzilla and the turbo-diesel. On all however the XL, four-wheel drive is now customary.
Trailering for Dummies
Heavy-duty pickups are all about doing work, and that usually means hauling insane quantities of weight. By Ford’s estimate, 90 % of Tremendous Obligation homeowners use their vehicles to tow. Relying on the way it’s configured, the Tremendous Obligation can tug a measly 13,700 kilos with a traditional hitch behind a crew-cab, long-bed 4×4 with the 6.8-liter gasoline V-8 or a whopping 40,000 kilos with a gooseneck-equipped, single-cab, rear-wheel-drive F-450 with diesel energy. It is the tech that surrounds towing that makes the duty really easy.
Ford’s Professional Trailer Backup Help stays and is arguably the least helpful tech of all of the trailering instruments. Throughout Ford’s temporary train, we backed an enormous, enclosed trailer right into a coned-off space on the primary try utilizing solely the mirrors and looking out again out the window. In two makes an attempt with Backup Help, which steers mechanically, we by no means received it into the spot.
Ford, nonetheless, has made hitching up the trailer simple. With Professional Trailer Hitch Help activated, the truck will lock on the hitch ball and mechanically reverse, flip, and brake the truck as soon as the hitch is aligned with the ball. The times of guessing and a number of in-and-outs to verify the alignment are historical past.
A completely outfitted Tremendous Obligation has extra cameras than the crimson carpet on the Oscars. Ford not solely affords a 360-degree picture of the truck, however the possibility so as to add 4 cameras to the trailer to supply a hen’s-eye view round it too. There are additionally extra sensors so as to add to the trailer to reinforce the flexibility of the blind-spot warning system. Say you are pulling a triple-axle, 30-plus-foot trailer behind a truck that is over 21 toes lengthy. In some circumstances, making a flip will probably be a difficulty. Ford’s non-compulsory Trailer Navigation is designed to assist choose a route given the trailer’s dimensions and weight.
The Tremendous Obligation affords the flexibility to recollect as much as 10 completely different trailers. From there, it shops the common gasoline economic system with every trailer in tow, and it mechanically adjusts the indicated distance to empty.
However does all of it work? We pulled round 30,000 kilos at Ford’s Michigan Proving Grounds in Romeo, Michigan, with relative ease. You already know there’s 15 tons of trailer behind the truck, however even up a 7 % grade, the Excessive Output diesel nonetheless generates significant acceleration.
Filth Will not Harm
For Tremendous Obligation clientele extra considering journey than work, the off-road-focused Tremor package deal ($4375) returns as an possibility on XLT to King Ranch, short-bed, single-rear-wheel F-250 and F-350 Crew Cabs. Whereas the package deal’s electronically managed locking rear differential, limited-slip entrance differential, fuel-tank and transfer-case skid plates, and 35-inch Goodyear Wrangler Duratrac tires carry over, the Tremor provides a couple of new methods for 2023.
Path Flip Help locks the within rear wheel, drastically lowering the turning circle. Its effectiveness varies relying on the soil beneath the tire, however any help pivoting these behemoths by tight and twisty trails is welcome. There’s additionally a brand new Rock Crawl drive mode, which prompts low gear within the switch case, locks the rear differential, and dials again the accelerator’s sensitivity. Geared up with the Excessive Output 6.7-liter, the Tremor effortlessly climbed a lumpy rock incline. It was nearly too simple to be enjoyable.
Wish to cruise the two-track and overlook in regards to the accelerator? Path Management returns to supply an off-road cruise-control expertise. In 4High, the pace is adjustable from 1 to twenty mph in single mile-per-hour increments. Bought a nasty downhill to descend? Swap to 4Lo, and Path Management will be adjusted in 0.5-mph increments from 1 to 10 mph. Sit again, calm down, and let the truck do the work, should you so need—though we nonetheless desire the old school two-pedal mode.
Whereas the Tremor affords a fantastic bundle of apparatus, the brand new XL Off-Highway package deal is an intriguing alternative for these on the lookout for a primary truck with a bench seat, rubber flooring, and a few modest off-road chops. The Off-Highway package deal provides the Tremor’s electronically managed locking rear differential, skid plates, Path Management, prolonged vent tubes for the switch case and axles for elevated water fording, and 33-inch Goodyear Wrangler Duratrac tires as a substitute of the Tremor’s 35s, all for the engaging value of $995. Which means a bare-bones, immensely succesful off-road rig will be had for just below $50,000.
Outdoors of the Tremendous Obligation’s excessive towing capabilities and off-road antics, it stays fairly fulfilling to drive on the road too. Our temporary time on the two-lane roads surrounding Ford’s Proving Grounds was spent behind the wheel of a well-equipped F-350 Lariat with the Excessive Output diesel, an engine that is supremely quiet in on a regular basis driving. There is a large surge of torque when the turbo spools, a lot in order that the rear tires barely preserve composure throughout a one-three upshift. Again after we pitted the Tremendous Obligation towards the heavy duties from Chevrolet and Ram in a tractor pull, we reported that Ford’s greatest downside was its incapacity to make enhance in 4Lo at 0 mph. Ford, acknowledging we discovered its weakest hyperlink, got down to repair that. Possibly it is time for a rematch?
For being such an enormous car, the Tremendous Obligation’s journey high quality is properly managed. There’s some hippity-hop of the axles when there’s sustained high-frequency chop within the highway, however that is to be anticipated from a truck with mega payload and towing capabilities. There’s extra disconcerting squish within the brake pedal than we recall, and the steering motions are about as direct as you may anticipate from an 8000-plus-pound rig.
Have It Your Means
Once more just like the Porsche 911, the F-Sequence Tremendous Obligation varies broadly in value. On the backside of the spectrum, a primary, rear-wheel-drive, single-cab F-250 begins at $45,865. On the prime, the F-450 Restricted can simply exceed $100,000. In between, nearly any mixture will be tailor-made to at least one’s particular wants. Irrespective of how a Tremendous Obligation is spec’d, it is going to be a succesful rig.
2023 Ford F-Sequence Tremendous Obligation
Car Sort: front-engine, rear/4-wheel-drive, 3-, 5-, or 6-passenger, 2- or 4-door pickup
Base: F250, $45,865; F350, $46,910; F350 twin rear wheel, $48,400; F450 twin rear wheel, $60,350
pushrod 16-valve 6.8-liter V-8, 400 hp, 445 lb-ft; pushrod 16-valve 7.3-liter V-8, 430 hp, 485 lb-ft; turbocharged and intercooled pushrod 32-valve 6.7-liter diesel V-8, 475 hp, 1050 lb-ft; turbocharged and intercooled pushrod 32-valve 6.7-liter diesel V-8, 500 hp, 1200 lb-ft
Wheelbase: 141.4–175.9 in
Size: 231.8–266.2 in
Width: 80.0–93.0 in
Top: 78.8–82.0 in
Passenger Quantity, F/R: 69/52–67 ft3
Curb Weight (C/D est): 6900–9200 lb
PERFORMANCE (C/D EST)
60 mph: 6.0–7.6 sec
1/4-Mile: 14.5–15.8 sec
High Velocity: 90–100 mph
EPA FUEL ECONOMY
Mixed/Metropolis/Freeway: Exempt from testing and labeling
Senior Testing Editor
David Beard research and opinions automotive associated issues and pushes fossil-fuel and electric-powered stuff to their limits. His ardour for the Ford Pinto started at his conception, which occurred in a Pinto.