The row between Ford and Ram over who boasts the best-in-class tow rating for heavy duty pickups has revealed a number of things. Chief among them is a report that Ford removes items like the spare tire, jack, radio and center console from its trucks in a bid to lower its base curb weight, and therefore its maximum payload rating.
What weighs 30,000 pounds? Big Ben's Westminster bell. A navy ship anchor. Or as we found out during our first drive program for the 2015 Ford F-Series Super Duty, seven pallets of cinder blocks loaded onto a dual-axle gooseneck trailer. The test was part of a raft of towing demonstrations that showcased the new Super Duty's impressive tug capacity, which maxes out at 32,100 pounds. That's 1,200 more than its nearest rival, the Ram 3500, when equipped with its upgraded 6.7-liter Power Stroke die
Aluminum Yields Weight Drop To Around 4,400 Pounds
Our new man Greg Migliore is in attendance at a Ford media event at the Blue Oval's Dearborn, MI headquarters today, and he's reported in with a handful of the 2015 F-150 stats that we've been dying to know. Ford is slow-playing the news release here, but we can still offer up some interesting output and performance figures after half-year of waiting.
Think back to the launch of the 2014 Chevrolet Silverado. At the time, General Motors happily trumpeted that its fullsize pickup could tow up to 11,500 pounds when properly equipped – impressive stuff, no doubt. But now, revised tow rating practices have been put into place, called SAE J2807. And with these new methods of testing, GM can now officially rate both the Silverado and its GMC Sierra twin as being able to tow up to 12,000 pounds.
Time for everyone to feign surprise – Ford has just announced that it has the increased horsepower and torque levels of its 6.7-liter Power Stroke turbodiesel V8 engine for 2015. As you'd expect, the Blue Oval is claiming class-leading figures of 440 hp (up from 400) and 860 pound-feet (up from 800), and that's enough to enable Ford's F-450 Super Duty model to tow as much as 31,200 pounds, which, again, the automaker claims is class leading.
Say what you will about its smallest SUVs, but you have to hand it to Suzuki: the likes of the Samurai, Sidekick and Vitara were doing the little-sport-ute-that-could thing long before most of the rest of the industry caught on. And the formula remains relevant enough that Suzuki is still selling the same basic Samurai overseas as the Jimny.
As a general rule, we try to follow a few simple principles throughout the day, and one of the most important is, "don't anger the road workers." Why? The guys and girls responsible for taking care of our nation's roadways wield the seldom-seen power to seriously put a kink your day. If you need proof, look no further than the clip in the video below. In it, workers in Tel Aviv, Israel carefully paint a handicap space around an otherwise legally parked vehicle. After they finish, it doesn't take
No one can accuse Ram of backing away from the full-size truck arms race. Chrysler has officially dropped the payload details on its 2013 Ram Heavy Duty, and the 3500 now packs a maximum trailer weight of 30,000 pounds. Chew on that number for a moment. That's 15 tons, or the equivalent of a dozen Mazda MX-5 Miata convertibles stacked on a trailer, and it's also a whopping 6,900 pounds more than the closest competitor to the Ram 3500, the Chevrolet Silverado 3500 HD. Ram engineers have cranked t
When one needs to transport a large powerboat great distances, it presents a rather wasteful problem. See, you have plenty of livable space on the boat, but said boat is up on a trailer, thus one must either tow one's craft with a large RV or stay in hotels. The owner of this... thing evidently thought that was too wasteful in the name of epic leisure. As such, you see the incredible contraption in front of you.
The battle amongst full-size pickup trucks from Ford, Chevy and Ram is as close to a bloodsport as the auto industry has, but now it might be Toyota that gets the last laugh in the tonnage towing race. In what should prove to be the mother of all publicity stunts, a showroom-stock 2012 Toyota Tundra will tow the space shuttle Endeavour to its final resting place at the California Science Center.
Chicago Kafkaesque system for moving vehicles to clear space for municipal work or TV/movie production is not working as advertised. In theory, it's straightforward: the city tows someone's car to an out-of-the-way parking space to make room and enters the new location into a database within 20 minutes of the move. Drivers looking for their cars can call 311 or go online to find out if their car has been relocated. In practice, it's typical big-city municipal Hell.
We've had some close calls while towing, though we've been fortunate enought to never have to deal with a calamity like the one you see above. From what we can tell, the driver of the truck in the video below was calmly driving along when his boat and trailer decided to blaze their own trail. We don't know if the trailer or the hitch failed, or if the rig simply wasn't secured properly, but the result is properly dramatic.
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 m
Careful Nissan Leaf drivers should never see the unwelcome little yellow icon that signals "turtle mode" or have to deal with what comes next – rock mode and a phone call to roadside assistance. In general, towing and electric cars are an unhappy combination. That is, unless it's the electric car doing the towing.