Ford has updated the aluminum-bodied F-150 pickup for 2018, installing new, more efficient gasoline EcoBoost V6 engines, a 10-speed automatic transmission, and for the first time in its light-duty truck family, a Power Stroke diesel engine.
Many truck drivers appreciate the diesel engine's combination of load-hauling torque and on-road efficiency, which is why virtually all commercial trucks are diesel powered.
Light-duty pickups have to meet car-style pollution limits, which is tougher for diesels (ask Volkswagen), and the necessary exhaust scrubbers add cost.
However, Ram sells between 10 and 15 percent of its 1500 pickups with a diesel V6 engine, which shows the demand for diesel power among light-duty shoppers, even with the price premium.
The F-150's gas engine family is getting a new EcoBoost turbocharged V6, now displacing 3.3 liters instead of the 2017 truck's 3.5 liters. This new engine is related to the one we drove in the 2017 F-150 Raptor, but for regular F-150 duty it is 3.3 liters and 282 horsepower, rather than the 3.5 liters and 450 horsepower of the Raptor.
There is also a new 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 for 2018. It gets a dual fuel injection system featuring both port and direct injectors, along with reduced internal friction for improved power and efficiency.
Finally, the 5.0-liter V8 famous for its service in Mustangs over the years also gets improved power and torque for 2018, though as with the 2.7-liter EcoBoost, Ford hasn't released the final specifications yet.
The F-150's cabin was already a pretty comfortable place to be, so Ford has worked on addressing details, like making it a better-sounding place to be. So the 2017 F-150 gains an optional B&O Play audio system, to ensure that your rough-and-ready work truck has a world-class sound system for reproducing your favorite music.