Ford F-150

2020 Ford F-150

The 2018 F-150 has to be many things to many people. From work truck to cruiser, off-road vehicle to boat hauler, there is an F-150 for virtually every task. As a result, the lineup is diverse. There are four engines available on the F-150, six trims and several body options.

The most basic engine is a 3.3L V6, which produces 295 horsepower, allowing for a tow rating of 7,600 pounds, which bests other competitors when equipped with their basic V6 engines. The next step up is a 2.7L turbocharged V6 that makes 325 horsepower and 400 lb-ft of torque. A bigger 3.5L turbocharged V6 makes 375 horsepower and 470 lb-ft of torque, helping the F-150 rate a class-leading towing spec of 12,200 pounds. The top-of-the-line 5.0L V8 makes 395 horsepower and 400 lb-ft of torque.

Trims include XL, XLT, Lariat, King Ranch, Platinum and Limited. The basic XL trim is available with three different cab sizes and three different bed lengths in either 2WD or 4WD configurations. Owing to its work-truck pretensions, the XL is relatively light on bells and whistles, with just basic utilities like an AM/FM radio and a 4.2-inch screen in the center stack.

The XLT, while still relatively basic, adds chrome bumpers, Ford's SYNC 3 system, fog lamps, an alarm, air conditioning, automatic headlamps, cruise control, keyless entry, power windows, a powered tailgate and power door locks.

Lariat-trimmed F-150s start to venture into more luxurious territory and are only available with extended or crew cab cabins. Standard equipment on the Lariat includes power folding door mirrors, a rearview camera, 18-inch wheels, ambient interior lighting, steering wheel-mounted audio and cruise controls, a power sliding rear window, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, leather-trimmed seats, a 10-way power adjustable driver's seat, SiriusXM satellite radio and an 8-inch touchscreen.

King Ranch versions come standard with the 5.0L V8 engine, a crew cab cabin and 2-tone exterior paint. Other features on the King Ranch include LED box lighting, LED headlamps, lots of exterior chrome, heated side mirrors with integrated turn signals and an auto-dimming feature on the driver's side, a remote starter, heated front and rear seats, wood interior trim and dual zone climate control.

The Platinum version is the urban cousin to the King Ranch trim. Like the King Ranch, it's only available with a crew cab and the V8. It also features a voice-activated navigation system, unique 20-inch polished aluminum wheels, LED side mirror spotlights, power deployable running boards, aluminum interior trim and a leather wrapped and heated steering wheel.

Finally, the Limited trim rides on 22-inch wheels and makes standard a whole range of convenience items that are optional on lesser trims. These include a 360-degree camera with split-view display, remote tailgate release, a twin-panel moonroof and more.

Editors' Review

Modern, full-size pickups like the 2022 Ford F-150 Platinum just about do it all. Not only can they tow mountains and race through the desert, they're often as comfortable and well-appointed as luxury sedans. Today's trucks also have better driving dynamics than ever, offer loads of space in their extended-cab bodies and give drivers unrivaled (though perhaps undeserved) machismo. For all these reasons -- and quite a few more -- the F-150 is arguably the best full-size rig you can buy today.

Thanks to its clean lines I think the current generation of Ford's popular pickup looks better than the in-your-face Chevy Silverado and somewhat snub-nosed Ram 1500. This example wears a conservative but still fetching Carbonized Gray Metallic paint job. The Platinum trim impresses with ample standard equipment, though it still offers plenty of extras if you've got cash burning a hole in your pocket. This example features four-wheel drive, the up-level equipment group and a 5.5-foot bed protected for years to come by Ford's modestly priced ($595) optional spray-in liner.

Under the hood, Platinum models come standard with a lovely 5.0-liter V8, though two flavors of 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 are offered, one with a hybrid system and another without. This truck is fitted with the top-shelf PowerBoost gasoline-electric drivetrain, which is $2,500 extra. This system delivers 430 horsepower and 570 pound-feet of torque, all of which gets routed through a 10-speed automatic transmission that was co-developed with General Motors. Ford's version of this gearbox seems to shift quicker, but in my experience The General's is smoother and usually better sorted.

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Model Year

The Good ~ Excellent Sync 4 infotainment system ~ Ritzy interior trimmings ~ BlueCruise works well ~ Tons of other tech

The Bad ~ Disappointing fuel economy ~ Undulating ride

The Bottom Line The Ford F-150 is the full-size truck to buy.

Editors' Rating
  • Performance 9
  • Features 10
  • Design 8
  • Media 9.5

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