2019 F-150 Autoblog Review
The 2019 Ford F-150 has some heady competition from brand-new Ram and GM full-size pickups, but that hasn't slowed things down for Ford. Even as the F-150 ages — it hasn't been fully redesigned since 2015 — we still find it to be a fantastic choice for those in the truck market.
What's new for 2019?Changes are minor for the 2019 F-150, but there are a couple of note. The Raptor engine has been made available in the maximum-luxury Limited trim. That means you can now have 450 horsepower and 510 pound-feet of torque in an F-150 that isn't an off-road beast. The F-150 XLT trim also adds Sync 3 to the list of standard equipment, which means it gets the 8-inch touchscreen now.
What's the F-150's interior and in-car technology like?The 2019 Ford F-150 interior ranges broadly in materials and technology throughout the many trims. Straight lines and angles remain all the way to the expensive Limited trim — the styling truly captures the "truck persona." All the big buttons, switches and simple layout look and feel proper on the truck, and there aren't any weird interior gimmicks. Each trim level improves on the one below it, ranging from rubber floor mats and vinyl seats to thick carpet, real wood and leather covering everything. There are even three high-luxury trims in the King Ranch, Platinum and Limited, which really just differ in the fanciness and look of their interior materials and in how much equipment is standard.
Ford can't match the Ram's optional 12-inch screen, but it has a responsive 8-inch touchscreen, running the Sync 3 tech interface that supports both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Sync 3 works well enough, and is probably one of the simpler and cleaner infotainment interfaces out there.
If you plan on towing, then you'll enjoy the F-150's Trailer Backup Assist that allows you to travel in reverse with a trailer through a simple knob interface on the dash. No more figuring out which way to counterintuitively turn the steering wheel.
How big is the F-150?Ford makes the F-150 in three body styles: Regular cab, SuperCab and SuperCrew. The SuperCab with an 8-foot bed is the longest F-150 you can buy, measuring in at 250.5 inches. You'll be sacrificing interior space that way — as in other extended cabs, the back seat's cramped legroom and upright backrest is best suited for occasional short trips. The F-150 SuperCab also utilizes annoying clamshell doors rather than the regular front-hinged doors found on rival trucks with similar-length cabs.
The SuperCrew does have regular doors and obviously provides the most interior room. Nobody will be wanting for more legroom or just space in general, just like every other full-size pickup sold today. It's very comfortable back there, although unlike the Ram and Toyota Tundra, the seat back doesn't recline. Seating for either five or six is available with either the SuperCab and SuperCrew. The interior feels like it has a lot of space and tons of headroom. There are multiple levels to easily rest your left arm, and the seats do not lack in room to spread out and get comfortable.
The bed is a choose-your-own-adventure type story. A full 8-foot bed is available on both the Regular Cab and SuperCab, but a 6.5-foot bed is the largest you can option on the SuperCrew. Ford also boasts the distinctive tailgate assist step (derisively dubbed the "man step" in GM advertisements), which makes getting up and down from the bed an exponentially easier experience – especially if doing so repeatedly.
What's the F-150's performance and fuel economy?There are many variations when it comes to powertrain setups on the F-150. The base engine is a 3.3-liter V6 that makes 290 horsepower and 265 pound-feet of torque. Then Ford offers a pair of turbocharged V6s as upgrades. First is the 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6, outputting 325 hp and 400 lb-ft of torque. Upgrade from that and you get the 3.5-liter EcoBoost that produces 375 hp and 470 lb-ft of torque. If you buy the Raptor or Limited, you get the high-output 3.5-liter V6 and its whopping 450 hp and 510 lb-ft of torque.
Ford still offers the 5.0-liter V8 as an engine upgrade for the 2019 model year, so truck fans can still go for displacement over everything else. There's also the 3.0-liter V6 turbodiesel option. This oil-burner makes 250 horsepower and 440 pound-feet of torque. Every engine is paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission except for the entry-level V6, which is mated to a six-speed auto.
Fuel economy varies by style, so we'll break it out for you here with some ranges.
- 3.3-liter V6: between 17-20 mpg in the city and 22-25 mpg on the highway
- 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6: 18-20 mpg city and 23-26 mpg highway
- 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6: 15-18 mpg city, 18-25 mpg highway
- 5.0-liter V8: 15-17 mpg city, and 19-23 mpg highway
- 3.0-liter V6 diesel: 20-22 mpg city, and 25-30 mpg highway
What's the F-150 like to drive?The answer to this question changes drastically depending on which F-150 you buy. It could be slow and boring with a 3.3-liter V6 work truck, or Baja-racer-like with the F-150 Raptor.
The ride and handling have been consistently praised since it was last redesigned for 2015. That said, it's slow steering is a bit more traditionally truckish than what's in the Ram and especially the Chevrolet Silverado. The ride quality also isn't quite as smooth and controlled as the Ram, which has a class-leading ride, while the available 22-inch wheels make the ride intolerably jarring.
The F-150's 10-speed automatic shines, downshifting smartly without drawing much attention to itself. The H.O. V6 (Raptor engine) is a real standout. It has a profound acceleration advantage over the most powerful Ram 1500, moving well beyond "capability" into the realm of indulgence. It pairs the smooth, effortless, low-end power of the lesser 3.5-liter turbo V6 found in other F-150s with an even greater wallop of thrust and a wicked snarl from the unique dual exhaust that never gets old.
In the diesel truck, the Power Stroke is a real peach. If you didn't know it had a diesel, from behind the wheel it feels just like a torquey gasoline engine. Power comes on smooth and low, only falling off slightly towards the top of the rev range. You're never wanting for power, be it passing on a two-lane road or climbing up a steep mountain pass. Just note that its payload isn't quite as high most of the gas engines, and it's fuel economy may not be enough to counter its hefty price premium.
What more can I read about the Ford F-150?
The 2019 Ford F-150 Raptor is, inside and out, almost identical to the previous version. It has the same 3.5L twin-turbo V6, same BF Goodrich KO2 tires, makes the same 450 horsepower and 510 lb-ft of torque, and has the same bloated price tag.
Pricing for the 2019 Ford F-150 starts at $29,750 for a base XL Regular Cab, including the $1,595 destination charge. From there, things can approach $75,000.
What features are available and what's the F-150's price?
To see what extra features come on the XLT, Lariat, King Ranch, Platinum, Limited and Raptor, check out this breakdown of features, specs and local pricing here on Autoblog.
What's the F-150's safety equipment and crash ratings?The F-150 comes standard with forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking. Features like blind-spot detection with cross traffic alert, adaptive cruise control, a 360-degree camera and lane-keeping assist are optional or included on higher trim levels.
A 5-star rating was awarded to the 2019 Ford F-150 by NHTSA. It was not given a Top Safety Pick by the IIHS, but performed well with "Good" ratings in every crash test category.
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