There are certain things that people identify as being uniquely from the US like apple pie, football, muscle cars, and pickup trucks. These are things that, no matter where you are in the world, people are going to identify them as from the US. They represent the things that make this country a great place to live and make people proud of where they are from. Certain vehicles have amassed a legendary history for themselves and one of those is the pickup truck.
These are the vehicles that are meant for working hard and playing even harder. They will haul whatever their owner needs them to and they will also get the kids to school and are useful when doing the grocery shopping. Pickup trucks have become so popular that manufacturers like Honda, Nissan, and Toyota that didn't always produce them, are now making sure to include them in their model lineups. There are a lot of great pickup trucks, but the Ford F Series is in a class all by itself.
The Ford F series is made up of a number of different models including the F-150, F-250, F-350, and even the F-750. This line has become the standard that all truck producers aim for because of their popularity and success (which we will discuss later in the article). In their over 70 years of history, they have gone through a host of changes and Ford has improved on their product in the best of ways. Here are 25 facts about the Ford F Series trucks that most people probably never even knew.
25 Why Is It Called The F-150?
The F-150 name was first used in 1975. AutoWise.com explains that in 1975, the F Series truck weighed just over 6,000 pounds, which allowed it to bypass certain regulations set by the Environmental Protection Agency. Their regulations said that vehicles of lower weights required a catalytic converter and unleaded gas.
The original 1948 F Series was the F-1 and the name was later changed to F-100 in 1953. It is said that Ford likely did this in honor of the F-100 Super Saber fighter jet. After upgrades, and added weight, this newer design needed a new name, and thus the F-150 was born.
24 The Original Rangers Were F Series Trucks
Many of us know the Ford Ranger as Ford's compact pickup truck offering that was introduced in the mid-1980s, but that is not where it started. AutoWise.com says that in 1958, Ford introduced Edsel vehicles (named after Henry Ford's son, Edsel) and these vehicles were only produced until 1960 (as they weren't very successful).
In 1965, Ford reintroduced the Ranger name in the F Series. It was the luxury trim model for the F Series trucks. It became its own model 20 years later. They discontinued the truck in 2011 and it was just reintroduced for 2019.
23 Ford Sold As A Mercury
Yes, Ford F Series trucks were marketed as Mercuries in Canada from 1948 until 1968, as stated by AutoWise.com. During that time, there were many small towns across Canada that may have had a Mercury dealer or a Ford dealer but, likely, never both.
This marketing stunt made sure that no matter what dealership may be in a given town, the F Series trucks were still able to be sold in Canada. It is an interesting marketing ploy, but it must have worked because it was that way for 20 years. It is definitely weird to see a Ford F Series truck with the Mercury name on it.
22 Introduced in 1948
The first F Series truck debuted in January of 1948, according to AutoWise.com. It was the first truck that was really built to be a work vehicle, unlike the older Model T, and the chassis was specifically designed to work as hard as their owners.
There were two different engine offerings for the first F Series that included a 239 cubic inch flathead V8 that put out about 100 horsepower and a 226 cubic inch inline 6 that put out about 95 horses. These trucks have come a long way since then, but these were great trucks (and made for great hotrods too).
21 Independent Front Suspension
The independent front suspension, also referred to as twin I beams, went into production in 1965. It was created in order to improve the rough ride that pickup trucks were known to have. It was so successful that it was used on the F-150 trucks until 1996.
AutoWise.com is quoted as saying that "while it was a very simple arrangement – it consisted primarily of two long beams swinging laterally that connected the wheel to the chassis." In this construction, Ford also replaced the commonly used leaf springs with coil springs. Ford was the first US company to offer this new suspension technology on their trucks.
20 The Whole Unibody Issue
A separate bed and cab setups were not put into production until 1963 after engineers realized that they posed a lot more issues than they did benefits. They also looked into the unibody issue because of the lighter duty people were using their trucks for, including daily driving. They originally used the unibody because it was easier to paint, required less welding, increased the load that could be carried in the bed, and also needed less stamping during building.
What they didn't realize is that the unibody engineering would cause the body to twist and even the doors to pop open or become stuck shut. They realized this engineering issue in 1961 and they took two years to create the separated body design.
19 Production in Brazil
Many US cars and trucks are built in other countries and they are engineered to suit those particular markets. Ford trucks were no different as the Brazilian F Series began being produced there in 1971 and was until 1992. These trucks were very different and their engines were built to suit Brazilian buyers.
As stated by AutoWise.com, the engine options included gas and diesel models. For the diesel models, there was a naturally-aspirated and turbocharged 4.1 liter 4-cylinder engine. For the gas versions, there was a 2.3-liter over-head-cam 4 cylinder and a 272 V8.
18 Bigfoot Was A Ford
Anyone who knows what a monster truck is knows the most famous one of them all is Bigfoot. It was the big blue monster that was jumping high and crushing all at every monster truck rally from coast to coast. Up until 2010 when it became a Chevy, Bigfoot was built on a F Series platform.
This is one of those things that shows how much Ford want to make sure that they made their presence known throughout any and all motorsports. They had rally trucks, Formula 1 cars, and they participate in NASCAR to this day.
17 Fully Customizable
These trucks can be made to suit any person, their needs, and their given budget. You can specify particular bed lengths, drive train specifications, and technology. They can even be equipped with all of the technology that you would find in a luxury sedan. They can even be bought as a bare-bones vehicle without a bed so that you can build it yourself.
These trucks are built to be whatever the buyer wants it to be. It can be a workhorse if that is what you want or it can be your daily driver if that is what you need it to be.
16 Best Selling (In The US and Globally)
The Ford F Series trucks are the top-selling pickup line of all time (domestically and globally) and the top-selling vehicle in the US for the last 36 years running. It is a line that all other vehicle manufacturers have great respect for. There has been a total of 35 million F Series trucks sold the world over.
Blog.Carvana.com says that F Series trucks sell at a rate of around one truck per minute. This is the kind of success that a vehicle manufacturer could only dream of and Ford was able to attain the success and hold on to it for almost four decades.
15 The Harley Davidson Edition
This was a classic pairing of US powerhouse brands. The Harley Davidson Edition F-150 made its debut in 2000 and ran until the 2013 model year. It was a pairing that just seemed right and the F-150 looked great in the Harley Davidson orange.
It was a natural idea because of the prominence of the two brands and the great things that they hoped to do together. The version was on the market for quite some time, but it never met the sales numbers that Ford and Harley both thought that it would.
14 The Raptor
Ford decided to deviate a little bit from their daily driving work truck image when they came out with the Raptor in 2010. It is a truck that is meant for off-roading and it has the power and engineering to handle it. There was a redesign in 2017, but not a whole lot was changed because they did this one right.
Whether you are in the desert or the mud, this truck can do what you want. The 2019, as described by Motor1.com, has a 3.6 liter, twin turbo, V6 that is pumping out 450 capable horses. It is a great looking truck that will do 0 to 60 in six seconds. Not bad for a truck that weighs over 5,000 pounds.
13 Resale Value
Regardless of how much you may love your F Series, there is going to come a time when you will be ready to sell it so you can get a new one. Luckily for Ford F Series truck owners, they are definitely going to get their moneys worth when they do.
According to Blog.Carvana.com, these trucks retain their resale value, unlike most other vehicles. After five years, these trucks are able to be sold for about half of what their original worth was. This is 25% better than most other cars and trucks that are out there. This makes a great value on a trade in or if you are selling it yourself.
12 4 Wheel Drive Option
The 4-wheel drive option is one of the things that a lot of truck owners want to have on their vehicles, whether it is for work or play. This is an option that was available starting in 1959. Before that, you had to send the truck out to be converted by a third party builder.
It was specialty equipment until they incorporated it as a factory option in '59. According to Thrillist.com. Now, for those who are going mudding on the weekends, using their truck to work on the farm, or have to deal with snowy weather in the winter, it is a must. It is one of those options that make the truck capable of doing a lot more.
11 Setup For A Camper
Ford is a company that likes to stay on top of trends, both in engineering and style. Their unibody update and their regular stylistic upgrades. This is evident in that fact that they are on their 15th generation of the F 150 to make sure that their trucks are always fresh and meet the standards of their market.
In the mid-1960s, according to Thrillist.com, Ford made their trucks already set up to have a camper hooked up to the bed. It was all the rage at the time and Ford made sure that they were doing what they could to appeal to buyers. It may not look very cool, but it was the 60s, it is what it is.
10 The Lightning
The Lightning was produced from 1999 to 2004 and it was Ford's performance truck at the time. Thrillist.com states that the Lightning was to the F 150 what the Cobra was to the Mustang. This truck had the soul of a supercar under the hood as it had the same motor in it as the world famous Ford GT. The same GT that won the 24 Hours of Le Mans race from 1966 through 1970.
The motor under the hood was a 5.4 liter, supercharged V8, pumping out just under 400 horsepower. It was a good looking truck, but I would definitely choose the Raptor over the Lightning if I had a choice.
9 Super Duties
Many people know about the F-150, 250, and 350. What many don't know is that there is a 450,550, 650, and 750. All the trucks above the F-150 are referred to as super duties. These also include the dually models as well. These are the big trucks that are meant for hard work and big play.
The larger 550s, 650s, and 750s are commonly used for large trucks like dump trucks. All of these trucks are part of the F Series and their sales numbers are incorporated as well. These trucks are part of the major success that the series has seen, although most think it is the F-150 alone.
8 The 650 and 750
These are some of the most massive mass produced trucks you will ever see. They are made with construction, towing, municipalities, and other businesses in mind. They can be customized to suit the needs of your given business and they are big enough to be fitted with dump truck beds on the back.
These are the true super duties of the F Series line. They seem so big that they are like monster trucks that are street legal. They also come with gas and diesel options.
7 The F1000 Galaxia
This has got to be the most unique looking F-Series truck I have ever seen. These turbo diesel trucks were made in Brazil and were never available in the United States. Such a shame because they are really cool looking. They seem like a mix of a conversion van and a pickup truck. Almost like the Subaru Brat that was like the blend of a truck and a station wagon.
These vehicles (I am not sure whether to refer to them as trucks or not) are so unique that there is no way that they could be mistaken for anything else. Off-the-wall vehicles like this are why I love cars in the first place.
6 F Series Sales In 2018
We are living in a time when people are far more environmentally conscious than they ever were. Due to this consciousness, people are buying their cars with this in mind. Ford will be releasing a hybrid F Series in the near future (but that is for another article). Though this societal shift is happening, it makes no difference to Ford F Series buyers.
According to the AutoBlog.com, there were 450,000 F Series trucks sold in the first half of 2018. The total numbers had not come out at the time of this article. These 6-month numbers put 2018 on pace to beat the numbers in 2004, which was the Series' best year ever.
5 The Lego Raptor
Legos are one of those timeless toys that haven't lost their popularity in their incredible, over 50-year history. This makes it fitting that there have been multiple Lego sets that were centered around various F Series trucks. One set even comes with a trailer to build and a hot rod to go on the trailer.
It is a microcosm for the cultural importance of cars and their reach across age groups. Children are able to build miniature versions of the trucks that their parents are driving.
4 The Velociraptor 650
You are not seeing double, it has six wheels and a mean looking frame. I didn't know it was possible, but it definitely is a beefed up Raptor with six wheels (that is just amazing).
Business Insider says that Hennessy straps a mean supercharger on these bad boys and gets them to pump out 650 horses. This is the same amount of horsepower as a Ferrari 488 GTB. Ford knows how to do it and do it big. I could just imagine what type of damage one of these would do to some sand dunes or a good mudding session. Serious damage.
3 2019 F 150
Trucks.com does a great job of describing the 2019 F-150 and everything that Ford makes available with it. These trucks are available in six different trim levels and three different cab configurations. They also have five different engine options that customers are able to choose from.
The engines range from the standard 3.3 liter, V6, that produces 290 horsepower to the 3.5 liter EcoBoost, V6, that produces a great 450 horsepower. They are also still offering the Raptor version as well. There is something for every F-150 lover out there.
2 2019 F-250
If you need a truck that is a little bit bigger and can work a little harder, the new F-250 is a great truck too. Just like the 150, these trucks come with six possible trim options and all of the technology to make the cabin look like a luxury sedan. It has a dually option as well as a couple of different engine choices as well.
It comes standard with a 6.2 liter, V8 engine with 385 horsepower and can be upgraded to a 6.7 liter Power Stroke V8 turbo diesel with 450 horses. Like with any of the trucks in the F Series line, there are going to be options that suit every buyer.
1 The Ferrari F150
I decided to include this one just for fun. First off, I didn't know that Ferrari made an F150, but I am sure that Ford was flattered. The Thrillist.com explains that in 2011, Ferrari entered a car into the Formula 1 series known as the F-150, in honor of the 150 years of Italian unification.
Ford was not going to just stand by and allow that to happen and they made sure to point out the obvious trademark problem. Because of this, Ferrari was forced to rename the car the F150 Italia. The car didn't perform well as a Formula 1 competitor.
Sources - Ford, Jalopnik, Business Insider & Auto Wise