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F-150 Drops the Pounds

01/24/2014 @ 4:36pm

The 2015 F-150 is nearly 700 pounds lighter thanks to a high-strength, military-grade, aluminum-alloy body coupled with a high-strength steel frame.

Starting with the signature fully boxed frame, Ford engineers increase the use of high-strength 70,000-psi steel – from 23% to 77% - to improve stiffness and durability while reducing weight. The new frame is up to 60 pounds lighter than the current frame.

“The frame is the backbone of the truck, and we delivered a frame that is stronger and more capable than before,” says John Caris, Ford.

Ford engineers also increased the use of advanced materials in the F-150 body, which helped significantly reduce the overall weight.

Advanced Aluminum
High-strength, aluminum alloys, already used in aerospace, commercial transportation, energy, and many other rugged industries, are used throughout the F-150 body for the first time, improving dent and ding resistance and also saving weight. Overall, up to 700 pounds of weight has been saved, helping the F-150 to tow more, haul more, accelerate quicker and stop shorter, and contribute to efficiency. Ford engineers selected these high-strength, military-grade, aluminum alloys because of the metals’ unique ability to withstand tough customer demands.

“Our objective was to find materials that allowed us to design the truck to be as tough – or tougher – than the current model, yet could help it be hundreds of pounds lighter for better capability and fuel economy,” says Pete Friedman, Ford. “Out of all the materials we tested, we carefully selected only certain grades of aluminum that met our high performance standards in all of our tests, while allowing us to trim hundreds of pounds from the truck.”

Adding to these benefits, aluminum alloys will not rust and are resistant to corrosion, helping enhance vehicle life.

Extreme Testing
To ensure the capability of the new design, the F-150 is the most tested F-150 in history. The new truck will have undergone more than 10 million miles of testing by the time it goes to sale.

“We put the truck through some of our testing longer and further than we have ever done before,” says Peter Frantzeskakis. “All of this extra testing proved we were on the right track with our designs and our materials”

11-Class Exclusive Features
The addition of aluminum to the truck body is the most significant announcement in this introduction, but Ford didn’t stop there. The 2015 Ford F-150 also includes 11 class-exclusive features.

  • 360-degree camera view
  • High-power 110-volt, 400-watt outlets
  • Latest EcoBoost technology
  • Smart trailer tow module to check trailer lights and connections
  • Next-generation tailgate step
  • BoxLink cargo management system with stowable ramps and lockable cleats
  • Remote tailgate release
  • LED headlamps
  • Inflatable rear safety belts
  • LED sideview mirror spotlights
  • Blind spot information system with cross-traffic alert

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