2012 Ford F-150 gets driveline upgrades, 750-mile range, new graphics

Ford's F-Series is one of the brightest jewels in the Blue Oval crown, and the 2012 Ford F-150 has been given more sizzle with new appearance options and more meat on the bones underneath it all with expanded driveline features and options. We've posted the full press release after the jump, but here are some highlights:

Down where tall blades of grass tickle the underbits, Ford has equipped every 2012 F-150 with Hill Start Assist to make starting off on grades less stressful. Lariat, King Ranch, and Platinum F-150s are given a new four-wheel drive system that includes an automatic mode to augment its four modes in each range. All 2012 F-150 4X4 models have the ability to be flat-towed in neutral, and an electronic-locking rear differential is available for EcoBoost and 5.0-liter V8 F-150s. Wheelbase and payload tweaks are made, as well, and your bladder will certainly notice the 756-mile range of the 2012 F-150 EcoBoost 4X4, made possible by a new 36-gallon fuel tank.

The most visible addition for 2012 is the available FX appearance package that adds visual badassery to F-150's exterior with flat black stripes, red badging, unique head- and tail-lamps, chrome exhaust tip, and a black grille. Wheels for the FX package are flat black 20-inchers, too. The FX package also tarts up the interior with black leather on the seats set off by red piping and perforations. The steering wheel continues the theme with red stitching. Black and satin-metallic accents complete the FX package's interior high points. There's also a new FX Luxury package that adds heated and cooled front seats.

Ford has also launched a new Head to Head Pickup Comparison tool to help buyers figure out which configuration and powertrain best suits their needs. The tool also shows how the F-150 compares to its competition. Dive into it all after the jump.

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2012 Ford F-150 Adds New FX Appearance Package, More Capabilities and Technologies to Fuel-Efficient Powertrains

• 2012 Ford F-150 delivers even more of what customers are looking for with a new FX appearance package, and several new technologies and driveline upgrades. They include the addition of Hill Start Assist, a new automatic 4x4 system for Lariat trim level and above, and greatly expanded availability of electronic locking rear axles on 3.5-liter and 5.0-liter engines

• Debuting stealthy, flat-black accents, the FX appearance package offers a unique 20-inch flat-black wheel, a stylized bodyside graphic and black badges with red lettering. Customized interior touches include black leather seating surfaces with red trim, brushed-metal accents and a red-stitched steering wheel

• All of the upgrades complement the fuel-efficient and powerful powertrain offerings that debuted in 2011. The powertrain lineup delivers a mix of best-in-class horsepower, torque, capability and fuel economy, with each engine mated to a six-speed automatic transmission

DALLAS, Sept. 29, 2011 – Ford F-150 – the most fuel-efficient and capable full-size pickup on the market – is getting fine-tuned for 2012, with a new FX appearance package and several driveline updates and new technologies to further improve and refine the driving experience.

"The new FX package delivers a distinctive style that truck buyers are looking for without compromising on any of the F-150's rugged qualities," said Raj Sarkar, F-150 Marketing manager. "It expands our range of specialty vehicles with custom elements that customers previously could find only in the aftermarket."

The new FX appearance package is available on both FX4 and FX2 trucks and delivers a unique look with stealthy, flat-black accents. The look is set off with black fender and tailgate badges that feature red lettering, which is carried into the interior with a red-stitched steering wheel.

The FX's interior also features black leather seating surfaces with red perforations and red piping. Unique interior touches include black-painted dash accents, brushed-metal surfaces, and satin shifter knob, door handles and air conditioning vent bezels. The package is available with all FX colors.

Also new for 2012, the FX luxury package now offers cooled front seats, which combine with the previously available heated seats.

New 20-inch six-spoke wheels with a flat-black paint are just one of the specialized styling cues on the exterior. A unique bodyside decal is matte black with color read-through for a distinctive appearance. A chrome exhaust tip, black-finished grille, and blacked-out headlamps and taillamps round out the exterior upgrades.
Enhanced capability
Upgrades on the 2012 F-150's drivetrain include replacing last year's electronic shift-on-the-fly with a two-speed automatic 4x4 system for Lariat, King Ranch and Platinum trim levels. The system still offers four high and four low modes, but now also offers a 4x4 auto mode. If the truck senses a loss of traction, it immediately transfers torque to the front wheels, making the system more seamless for the customer.

A new feature, Hill Start Assist, helps keep the truck from rolling backward at a stop, making it easier to pull away when on a slope or hill, especially when towing. With the brake pedal pressed, if sensors detect the vehicle is on a slope, the system is automatically activated. Brake pressure is held in the braking system, and the truck remains stationary on the slope for up to two seconds after the driver releases the brake pedal.

The addition of neutral tow capability on all 4x4 trucks means customers can now flat-tow their F-150, making the truck even more usable. An available electronic locking rear axle replaces most of the limited-slip offerings on the 3.5-liter EcoBoost® and 5.0-liter engines. It is now available in a range of axle ratios, and is even offered on 4x2 models, delivering a new level of traction capability across most of the F-150 lineup.

"These changes are centered around making F-150 an even more useful tool for our customers," said Jackie DiMarco, F-150 chief engineer. "We're continuously raising the bar when it comes to capability, and these upgrades and new technologies push us even further."

Additional updates include:
• Light-duty SuperCab 163-inch-wheelbase option on XL and XLT
• Heavy-duty payload CrewCab 157-inch-wheelbase option on XL, XLT and Lariat
• Electronic shift-on-the-fly 4x4 now standard on XL to FX4 trim levels

Fuel-efficient and powerful offerings
All of the changes for 2012 complement a powertrain lineup that debuted in 2011. The powertrain lineup delivers a mix of best-in-class horsepower, torque, capability and fuel economy. Each new engine is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. Ford is the first and only manufacturer to equip its entire full-size pickup truck lineup with fuel-saving six-speed automatic transmissions as standard.

Here are the highlights of the engines:

3.7-liter four-valve Ti-VCT V6
• Best-in-class 302 horsepower at 6,500 rpm vs. V6 competitors
• Unsurpassed 278 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,000 rpm vs. V6 competitors
• Best-in-class 17 mpg city and best-in-class 23 mpg highway (4x2)
• Best-in-class 6,100 pounds maximum trailer tow vs. V6 competitors
5.0-liter four-valve dual-overhead-camshaft Ti-VCT V8
• Best-in-class 360 horsepower at 5,500 rpm vs. standard V8 competitors
• Best-in-class 380 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,250 rpm vs. standard V8 competitors
• 21 mpg highway, unsurpassed 15 mpg city (4x2)
• Best-in-class 10,000 pounds maximum trailer tow vs. standard V8 competitors

6.2-liter two-valve single-overhead-camshaft V8
• Best-in-class 411 horsepower at 5,500 rpm vs. all competitors
• Best-in-class 434 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,500 rpm vs. all competitors
• 13 mpg city, 18 mpg highway (4x2)
• Best-in-class 11,300 pounds maximum trailer tow vs. all competitors

3.5-liter Ti-VCT EcoBoost
• 365 horsepower at 5,000 rpm on regular fuel
• Best-in-class 420 lb.-ft. of torque at 2,500 rpm vs. premium V8 competitors
• Up to 90 percent peak torque available from 1,700 rpm to 5,000 rpm
• Best-in-class 11,300 pounds maximum trailer tow vs. all competitors
• Best-in-class 3,060 pounds payload vs. all competitors
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Ford F-150 Information

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