The Ford F-150 is the best-selling pickup in America. The F-150 lineup offers a plethora of models in dozens of permutations. All are highly capable trucks, even those loaded with luxury features. The F-150 was completely redesigned for 2009. So for 2010, changes are limited to packaging.
Smooth and quiet, the F-150 is comfortable on bumpy streets around town, over rugged terrain such as that found at construction sites, and on the open road. Its steering is nicely waited and requires little correction on the highway making it nice for long cross-country tows. The cabs are comfortable, whether ordered with leather or cloth.
The F-150 lineup runs the gamut from wash-off vinyl flooring and a two-door Regular Cab to leather-lined premium four-door models with as much rear-seat legroom as the front of most luxury sedans: Within those extremes lies something for everyone. Yet even the least-expensive F-150 isn't boring; it leaves room for customization, does the work required and keeps overhead down.
With one of the deepest beds in the segment, the F-150 has generous cargo volume out back and a maximum payload rating of 3,030 pounds. A properly equipped Regular Cab F-150 is rated to tow up to 11,300 pounds; other models max out in the 9,000-pound range. (The Ford Super Duty range of heavy-duty pickups is covered in a separate New Car Test Drive review.)
Three V8 engines are offered. A 248-hp 4.6-liter V8 is standard with four-speed automatic transmission, with EPA ratings of 15/19 mpg City/Highway. Most higher-line trucks come with a three-valve-per-cylinder version of the 4.6-liter rated at 292 horsepower and a six-speed automatic transmission that gets improved highway mileage, achieving an EPA-estimated 15/21 mpg.
A 5.4-liter flex-fuel V8 is the largest offered and comes with the six-speed automatic. It is rated at 310 horsepower and 365 pound-feet on gasoline (EPA 14/20 mpg) and 320 horsepower and 390 pound-feet on E85 with mileage dropped to 10/14 mpg. Four axle ratios are offered to maximize work and efficiency.
The 2010 F-150 King Ranch and Platinum models feature second-row heated seats, a power sliding rear window with defroster, and a Sony six-disc in-dash CD changer. The MyKey programmable vehicle key is standard on all models except the base XL trim level. Two-wheel-drive models with the 4.6-liter three-valve-per-cylinder engine have EPA fuel economy ratings of 15/21 mpg City/Highway.