The Testing Regimen of the 2015 F-150
The pickup experts at Ford have never been a group to rest on their laurels. That is probably why the Ford F-150 is the best-selling vehicle in America right now — they are always pushing it to be better. In order to ensure that the 2015 Ford F-150 is superior to comparable trucks being made by Chevy, Toyota, and Ram, the team at Ford devised an elaborate testing regimen and kept details about the project strictly guarded. We are starting to learn more about this ambitious scheme, however, and everything suggests the newest F-150 is going to be an exceptional pickup.
The tests were conducted near Elko, Nevada at the Barrick Cortez goldmine — the largest in the nation. The vehicles tested were designated as Ford “X1” prototypes and were a combination of outgoing F-150 models enhanced with features expected to show up in the 2015 model. The project was intended to test the new build under actual working conditions, so models were given to the miners to use as on-site work trucks. Similar tests were also conducted at an electrical company and a construction firm.
The engineers at Ford monitored the trucks according to a wide array of metrics, but the variable they were most interested in was the performance of the bed. That’s because, for the first time ever, the 2015 Ford F-150 will have a bed made of lightweight aluminum. Testers wanted to make sure that the material could hold up no matter how much abuse it was subjected to.
The choice to go with an aluminum bed is a strategic one. The change in materials reduces the overall weight of the vehicle by almost 700 pounds, which does a lot to improve fuel economy and handling. Aluminum is also harder to scratch and dent, and resists rust better than steel. Thanks to a high-strength steel frame underpinning the aluminum bed, there is no loss in hauling capacity.
Ford seems happy with the results of the test, and the miners that spent 2 years driving these trucks seem pretty satisfied, too. When the totally redesigned 2015 Ford F-150 hits the market this fall, you’ll be able to find it at River View Ford, located at 2200 U.S. 30, Oswego, IL 60543. Contact us online or visit our dealership to learn more!