We've seen this sort of thing before – a group agrees to adhere to a common standard at some determined date, then when the date arrives, one or more parties in the group figures out how to 'adhere' in a completely new way. When the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) laid out its J2807 tow-rating guidelines a few years ago with input from domestic and Japanese truck makers and tow suppliers, the standardized testing regime was applauded as a way to provide reliable comparisons between manufacturers. Even though it would mean lowering their tow ratings, all of the truck makers agreed to use the J2807 protocol as of 2013.

Toyota moved to the new ratings two years ago, resulting in tow ratings for its Tundra dropping anywhere from 400 to 1,000 pounds. When it came time for General Motors to announcing its 2013 trucks, it released towing specs based on the new standards, sending some ratings up and other down by hundreds of pounds. Ford, however, has decided that it will move to the J2807 standard when it's "all-new models come to market," which means The Blue Oval gets at least another year, probably more, to use its current figures. Predictably, GM not only cried foul, it took back the SAE numbers – even though they've been revealed – and has reverted to the pre-SAE ratings. A GM statement read, in part, "For example, key competitors are continuing to use their existing ratings for 2013 model year pickups. Retaining our existing rating system will reduce confusion for dealers and customers."

Ram hasn't disclosed its plans yet, but information on its 2013 models is expected at the end of this month and we'll know where it stands. Concerning GM, the truth is out there, you'll just have to go looking for it. Concerning the clarity everyone was hoping to find this year, well, that's still a ways off.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 66 Comments
      Cruising
      • 2 Years Ago
      Most truck engines can pull the maximum rated capacity for that truck the weak link is the transmission. They can only handle so much extra load. The engines can handle the listed maximum but your transmission is the one that is suffering, and no just because you add a option of a transmission cooler does not make a light duty transmission any stronger in the long run.
      Rob J
      • 2 Years Ago
      But how will the armchair jockeys argue without numbers?!?!?!
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        Randy
        • 2 Years Ago
        And what's the asterisk? That Ford sells far more F150 trucks to business and persons which they are intended for? There is no dumping trucks in rental car companies! What's your point?
          The_Zachalope
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Randy
          @SVX So, you're getting irritated that Ford is doing something GM already does? Last time I checked, it doesn't matter if it's a Silverado 1500 or 3500, it's all counted in the same list. The only difference is that Chevrolet and GMC are different brands. Also, the Kodiak and TopKick haven't been produced in 3 years come July.
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Randy
          [blocked]
          Randy
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Randy
          And F150 vs anything still sells better without any asterisk! The point was to un-asterisk something that didn't need one.
          JamesJ
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Randy
          Up until recently the Chevrolet half-ton trucks where outselling the Ford F-150. But Ford brags that the F-series are the best selling trucks for over 30 years. Chevy truck sales are poor in the heavy duty market, even the Ram sells more trucks in the heavy duty market.
          JamesJ
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Randy
          I post the truth and I get down-voted. http://news.pickuptrucks.com/2009/01/fseries-trucks-pickup-market-share-silverado-leads-lightduty-sales.html Here are the numbers to back up my claim, I admit I was wrong about Dodge HD outselling the Chevy HD, but it was very close.
        • 2 Years Ago
        [blocked]
          • 2 Years Ago
          [blocked]
        merlot066
        • 2 Years Ago
        F-Series numers are compared to Silverado numbers are compared to Ram numbers (excluding the Dakota). The whiners from GM complain because on occasional months Silverado and Sierra sales COMBINED outsell the F-Series. The F-Series is the best selling truck nameplate in the industry. If GM wanted to try and change that they could've axed GMC during their bankruptcy and kept Pontiac but their research indicated that they'd lose a lot of loyal GMC customers who wouldn't move over to a Chevy. As for your steeper drops comment, the truck makers agreed to release their updated tow ratings for 2013. It isn't 2013 yet so Ford hasn't released its updated numbers yet (neither has Ram or Nissan). Toyota updated theirs because the Tundra is a joke and the few people that buy them are probably more interested in 0-60 times considering that's the way Toyota marketed them.
      carboy55
      • 2 Years Ago
      No wonder the domestic industry always falters eventually. They have a bunch of dishonest babies at the helm of their marketing departments. Look at what Toyota did - it's admirable. The domestics are just lying sacks off poo.
        The_Zachalope
        • 2 Years Ago
        @carboy55
        Yes, because Toyota NEVER lied about anything. Ever.
        richard
        • 2 Years Ago
        @carboy55
        Are you one of those losers driving a Tundra? Why are you anti-American?
      richard
      • 2 Years Ago
      Ford seems to have a hard time trying to match GM horsepowerand torque.
        TruthHertz
        • 2 Years Ago
        @richard
        The Ford 5.0L V8 has more power and torque than GM's 4.8L and 5.3L engines. Ford's 3.7L V6 beat the GM's 5.3L in several towing tests. Then Ford still has the Ecoboost and a 6.2L available on top of that. If GM adds D.I. nothing can stop Ford from doing the same. You'd then see the same situation that you have now with GM's antiquated push rod bull crap.
          Dark Gnat
          • 2 Years Ago
          @TruthHertz
          "antiquated push rod bull crap" OHC is just as antiquated as OHV. More so, actually.
          Michael Sexton
          • 2 Years Ago
          @TruthHertz
          You mean the same push rod bullcrap thats fastest in practice at Le Mans right now. I dont see Ford doing much there. That bullcrap is some mighty fast sh*t,ask Ferrari.
      That Guy
      • 2 Years Ago
      Anyone with half a brain can see that Ford doctors their tow ratings. They completely make them up so their so called "trucks" look better on paper. Has anyone ever wondered why the terrible boat anchor 5.4 V8 has a HIGHER tow rating than the MUCH MORE POWERFUL 5.0 V8? It's because all Ford cares about is winning the war on paper. That being said, I wish GM would not have sunk to Fords lever of deception and dishonesty and just kept their trucks at the SAE numbers. Those numbers are honest....Ford are pencil whipped.
        merlot066
        • 2 Years Ago
        @That Guy
        "Anyone with half a brain can see that Ford doctors their tow ratings." Really? My dad has loaded his trailer over 8,000 pounds and he tows it with an 03 Explorer 4x4 V8 with no problem. I can't imagine that a larger, stronger F150 with a 5.4L V8 couldn't tow 2k more pounds. Selling in the numbers they all do, if any full-sized pickup was lying about their capability they'd have had angry consumer groups after them years ago.
        • 2 Years Ago
        @That Guy
        [blocked]
      Muttons
      • 2 Years Ago
      I agree with Ford's approach, as using a different standard on an unchanged truck makes it seem in the eyes of consumers that the truck has lost capability when it has not. I have no problem with other manufacturers following suit.
        CEC
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Muttons
        Actually, if the new standards numbers are lower then what the manufacturer's numbers are, then the truck HAS lost capability. This shows that Ford has been fluffing its numbers for years. Look at it HP wise. If a company has been posting its numbers as 500, then when a new standard is used it is found the engine has 450. That engine has always been at 450, not the 500 the company used to post.
      Jonathan Wayne
      • 2 Years Ago
      I and my friends have always towed 29+ ft boats and 5th wheels with Chevy trucks and they work. GM may not be the best at everything, but when it comes to trucks and towing, they are hands down the best. I would not have anything else.
        ابوذر ڀرڳڙي
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Jonathan Wayne
        Everyone says that about the trucks they own. Ford people will say "Ford is hands down the best truck, the only truck to have!". Dodge fan boys will say the same about Ram trucks. Hell it doesn't just stay at trucks. SAAB fanboys will say those were the best cars ever made, Volvo fans will say that about their cars, Toyota fans, Honda fans, etc.
        Muttons
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Jonathan Wayne
        If it's all you've ever towed with how can you say it's the best? You have no comparative data. Of course they work! Fords and Dodges work as well. There is very little separating the capabilities of full size trucks these days, just numbers bragging. It comes down to features and comfort. Or for those fanboys, the badge on the front.
        Dark Gnat
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Jonathan Wayne
        Well all right pilgrim.
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Dark Gnat
          [blocked]
        That Guy
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Jonathan Wayne
        Of course they are. INDEPENDENT tests have proven that.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      CEC
      • 2 Years Ago
      I have a feeling the 2013 Ram will have class leading stats.
        TruthHertz
        • 2 Years Ago
        @CEC
        LOL, Really? The Hemi has a peaky powerband and I remember a test not too long ago where a turbo V6 easily beat it up a steep grade. If the Ram gets a slight bump from the new 8 speed automatic, Ford simply updates a CPU to provide a little more boost.
          CEC
          • 2 Years Ago
          @TruthHertz
          Peaky? Wow, do you realize that the Hemi has more torque then the EB below 1800 RPM. It isn't until 2200 RPM the EB has a noticeable torque advantage. But at the 2500 RPM mark the Hemi has the noticeable HP advantage, and now that the 2013 Ram will have the gear advantage the EB isn't going to stand a chance. For the Davis Dam test that Ford did. The only reason why the EB beat the Ram up the grade was because of the gear advantage it had in 1st and 2nd gears. Look at the numbers. The EB had a 12 second advantage to 60 because it had a 15.55:1 overall gear ratio in first, compared to the Ram's 11.76:1 overall ratio (that's a 32% gear advantage), which means the EB got off the line much better. But by the end of the test the EB was only 3 seconds ahead. Seems to me the F150 was losing ground quite quickly. Now that the Ram has the 8 speed the Ram will have a 16.69:1 overall ratio, compared to the Fords15.55:1 and the Ram will have a 7% gear advantage, more then enough to make up for it's slight torque disadvantage between 2200 and 3200 RPM. I guarantee Ford will not do this test again, with a properly geared Hemi Ram.
          • 2 Years Ago
          @TruthHertz
          [blocked]
      thedriveatfive
      • 2 Years Ago
      In reality they can all tow more then rated capacity by a substantial margin. Also in reality the vast majority of people who buy them dont need them to tow even there rated capacity. I for one would be happy with a smaller 4L Diesel 1/2 ton that tows the same as the gas ones but with better mpg. All I really tow is my boat.
        MrWhopee
        • 2 Years Ago
        @thedriveatfive
        Of course they do, at least on level ground, they'd have to have some extra power/capacity for not so ideal situation, like an incline. Or a strong headwind.
      Dark Gnat
      • 2 Years Ago
      Ford needs to grow a pair and adopt the new standard.
        The_Zachalope
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Dark Gnat
        If you read the article, Ford is going to be accepting the new standards with the next models come out which should be within the next two years. So, they are adopting it, but not immediately, which makes sense since they'd have to print all new tow-capacity stickers on the bumpers and all new owners manuals with the new numbers.
          Abarthlyness
          • 2 Years Ago
          @The_Zachalope
          Thats the point... Ford isn't going to be posting updated tow rating for up to two years down the road, when they all "agreed" to follow the new standards for 2013 which is right around the corner. These manufacturers need to man up, regardless of where the trucks are in their product cycle. From what I gather, Ram's numbers will not really change much.
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