New for 2013
The 2013 Ford F-150 pickup truck manages to combine versatility, great fuel economy and dependability while offering several unique trims, cab styles and pickup box lengths.
the F-150 gets revised exterior styling. Available high-intensity-discharge headlights look similar to those on the Explorer and Edge crossovers. XLT and other work-oriented trims get a new two-bar grille while uplevel trims have a three-bar design. Tow mirrors that power-fold and power-extend are available.
Inside, uplevel trims like the Lariat, King Ranch, Platinum and new Limited get MyFord Touch and its 8-inch touch-screen in the middle of the dashboard. Other F-150s get a new 4.2-inch dash screen for the stereo and climate systems.
Dashboard Sports Bar
Like the Model T, the Ford F-150 uses rear leaf springs. Henry’s proletariat chariot, however, didn’t come with a movie theater wedged between the gauges. For 2013, the popular XLT and FX2/FX4 trims—these are in the middle of the F-150 trim spectrum—feature two 4.2-inch LCD screens. The dash-mounted touch screen controls the usual stuff, like radio, mobile phone, and navigation; the 4.2-inch LCD between the gauges displays the trip computer, options for gauges, and towing setup. Those shopping for less-expensive XL and STX versions of the F-150 will have no LCD screens to play with, but can still get Sync for music and cell-phone integration.
At the other end of the lineup, starting with the $36,000-ish Lariat, the LCD screen in the center of the dashboard is upgraded from 4.2 inches to eight, and Ford’s MyFord Touch dashboard control system is standard equipment.
The 2013 F-150 has four available engines, each paired with a standard six-speed automatic transmission. The base engine is a 302-horsepower, 3.7-liter V6. There are two optional V8s, a 5.0-liter with 360 horsepower and 380 pound-feet of torque and a 6.2-liter with 411 horsepower and 434 pound-feet of torque. The 6.2-liter is the standard engine in the off-road-oriented SVT Raptor. There is also an optional turbocharged EcoBoost V6, which makes 365 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque.
Reviewers like the F-150’s broad engine lineup. They say that the base V6 is adequate for day-to-day driving, but doesn’t make the truck particularly fast or strong. Critics say that those who’ll use their truck for serious towing and hauling should opt for one of the V8s or the EcoBoost V6. Reviewers say the transmission shifts smoothly, and several attribute the transmission to the F-150’s respectable fuel economy numbers, at least from the V6s and the 5.0-liter V8.
The 6.2-liter V8 is the least fuel-efficient of the quartet of engine choices, topping out at 13/18 mpg city/highway with two-wheel drive. The EcoBoost V6 achieves up to 16/22 mpg, which is good considering its strong output. The 5.0-liter V8 tops out at 15/21 mpg, and the base V6 gets up to 17/23 mpg city/highway with two-wheel drive. Both figures are decent for the class. Opting for four-wheel drive will drop fuel economy slightly. The four-wheel drive-only SVT Raptor gets just 11/16 mpg city/highway.
The 2013 Ford F-150 is nearly as spacious for cargo and passengers as the cavernous Toyota CrewMax. It offers superb backseat comfort thanks to abundant legroom, a flat floor and a seatback angle that’s pleasantly reclined. The SuperCab is still fairly roomy, but legroom is noticeably less generous. Its rear-hinged clamshell doors are also less useful than the conventional front-hinged doors of the competitive Tundra Double Cab and Ram Quad Cab.
The F-150 is well suited to life as a work truck. It can be equipped to perform a variety of work- and recreation-related chores, and little details like tailgate steps, trailer sway control, box side steps and the Work Solutions options make life easier for the owner. If application in other Ford vehicles is any indication, the newly added MyFord Touch infotainment interface can be frustrating to operate.
All F-150s feature simple primary controls and good-quality materials (by full-size truck standards). Of special note is the instrument panel on upper trims with easy-to-follow analog gauges and a very informative 4.2-inch LCD message-center screen. The navigation system includes an 8-inch screen, also with impressive clarity.
Safety features include: