Ford trims 732 lbs off the new aluminum F-150

Ford revealed the weight, power and towing capacity of the radical new aluminum-bodied F-150 pickup.

The company exceeded its initial promise to reduce the truck's weight by 700 lbs compared to the current steel-bodied pickup. A well-equipped four-wheel-drive 2015 crew cab weighed 4,942 lbs, a whopping 732 lbs less than a comparable 2014.

The lighter weight should reduce fuel consumption for the new version of America's best-selling vehicle. The 2015 F-150 goes on sale in the fourth quarter. Ford will announce its price and EPA fuel economy ratings later.

Ford also revealed power and towing figures for its new 2.7L twin-turbo V6 engine. The engine produces 325 horsepower and 375 ft/lbs of torque. It will be able to tow up to 8,500 lbs. The 2.7L V6 is expected to account for about 28 percent of F-150 sales.

Ford compared an F-150 with the 2.7L to a 5.3L V8 Chevrolet Silverado and a Ram 1500 with a 3.0L V6 diesel.

The base engine for the 2015 F-150 will be a 3.5L V6 that produces 283 horsepower and can tow up to 7,600 lbs. That engine should account for 15% of sales.

Ford did not reveal performance figures for the other engines it will offer, a 5.0L V8 and 3.5L twin-turbo V6. Each of those engines is expected to account for 28% of sales.

All 2015 F-150 towing capacities will be certified by a new Society of Automotive Engineers standard that assures automakers test their pickups in a consistent manner. Ford, Chevrolet, GMC, Ram and Toyota's full-size pickups all adopt the SAE standard, called J2807, for 2015. Nissan's Titan full-size pickup will move to the standard when an all-new version debuts as a 2016 model next year.

Weight reductions for the 2015 F-150 will range from about 625 lbs to more than the 732-lb reduction Ford showed today. Large pickups with bigger cabs, like the four-door crew cab, will benefit most, because they use more weight-saving aluminum than smaller models.

Copyright 2014 - Detroit Free Press

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