click above image for more spy shots of the 2009 Ford F-150

The 2009 Ford F-150 has until now been kept a closely guarded secret, but the Blue Oval's best seller was recently caught by KGP photographers apparently on its way back to the safe confines of a trailer after a photoshoot. This first look at the undisguised F-150 shows a new front end that features a version of the brand's three-bar grille, though in this case it appears that the upper and lower bars are larger than the center one. The headlights also appear to be very similar to those used on the Edge CUV and Taurus X, dipping down and extending their height closer to where they meet the grille. KGP has also spotted new taillights, new rearview mirrors and subtle changes to the character lines on the sides of the truck.

The spy photographers were surprised to see how little the truck has visually changed, wondering whether it indicates a lack of imagination by Ford or simply a lack of funds. We're fairly certain that Ford doesn't mess around when it comes to its cash cow, so the money must be somewhere, but perhaps it's been invested in things we can't see like upgraded mechanicals and new drivetrains. For better or worse, the pickup wars are largely won on paper where stats can be compared objectively. We're betting the new F-150 will be a stout steed when it's unveiled, presumably at the 2008 Detroit Auto Show in January. Whether or not its new look is a big enough departure from the current truck, or if that even matters, will be decided by consumers when it goes on sale next year.

[Photos: KGP Photography]

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