Ford Makes The Greenest Machine on the Road
Feb 03, 2014 11:10PM
Dallas, Los Angeles and New York are the three cities chosen for the debut of Ford’s revolutionary new vehicle, to occur simultaneously with the North American Auto Show, in Detroit. The all-new Ford F-150 Lariat full-size pickup truck has been dubbed Ford’s “green” truck.
Its all-aluminum construction represents the reinvention of the Ford F-Series lineup, which has been the best-selling truck in the country for 37 years and the best-selling vehicle overall for 32 years. The Lariat contains 11 other smart-car features and promises to set the standard for the future of trucks. Ford is also proud of the fact that the Lariat’s manufacturing process is closed-loop, meaning there is no materials waste. Any aluminum scraps are recycled and reused in the manufacturing process. The Lariat is expected to get 25 to 30 miles per gallon, although mileage may vary.
The Dallas unveiling at Gilley's Night Club was a huge event, with Ford dealers coming in from all over the state. Texas is especially important to Ford because almost half of all F-150s are sold here. Gilley’s was decked out with trick lariat performances by a couple of real cowboys, photos with Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders and a country and western band.
The all-new F-150 has an impressive combination of power, capability and efficiency, from advanced materials that improve durability and inhibit corrosion to faster computer processors that enhance driving performance and innovative cargo and towing features. The military-grade aluminum alloys, already used in aerospace, commercial transportation, energy and other rugged industries have previously been used only in smaller race cars. The Lariat is about 700 pounds lighter as a result, helping the truck tow more, haul more, accelerate quicker and stop shorter, as well as contribute to higher fuel efficiency.
“More than ever before, customers want a truck that is a dependable partner, a mobile office and a go-anywhere workshop,” says Raj Nair, Ford group vice president of global product development. “To meet the needs of our truck customers, we created smart new features and a whole new approach to using advanced materials and engines to improve capability and efficiency.”
Before it goes on sale to the general public, the Lariat will have been torture-tested in labs, at Ford proving grounds and in the hands of some of Ford’s most demanding truck customers for more than 10 million miles. Testing also includes crisscrossing the country pulling heavy trailers and hefty loads through desert valleys and over high-altitude mountain passes in temperatures from 20 degrees below zero to 120 degrees Fahrenheit. A disguised new Ford F-150 Lariat even raced in the Baja 1000, where it completed all 883 grueling miles, while some other special purpose race vehicles did not.
New “smart” features include a 360-degree camera view, using exterior cameras to create a bird’s-eye view all around the truck to help drivers park, maneuver in tight spots and navigate narrow roads and; integrated loading ramps, enabling easy loading into the pickup bed; LED headlamps and tail lamps; a new rearview camera feature to help drivers line up truck and trailer without requiring a spotter; a remote tailgate, allowing for the tailgate to be locked, unlocked and released with the key fob; high-wattage power outlets (400 watts, 110 volts) in the cab; LED spotlights on side view mirrors, providing bright lighting around the truck exterior; a more efficient 2.7-liter EcoBoost engine; and a new eight-inch LCD productivity screen in the instrument panel. The Ford 1-150 Lariat goes on sale later this year.