Deep in the heart of Texas (Dallas, really), Ford's fervently working to showcase its revamped and re-powered 2011 F-150 at the 2010 Texas State Fair. What's new for 2011? We're keeping tabs on the press conferences, but here's a quick rundown of what we can expect.
Arguably, the biggest news surrounding the 2011 F-150 is it's smallest engine option. Ford's twin-turbocharged, direct-injection 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6 will be available in its full-size truck, reportedly allowing buyers to have the power of a V-8 and the fuel economy of a V-6. Ford hasn't disclosed fuel economy figures yet, but the truck-spec EcoBoost engine is rated at 365 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque, and can reportedly tow up to 11,300 pounds.
Revamped Powertrain Lineup
That EcoBoost V-6 isn't the only new engine for the F-150. For 2011, the base engine offering is a 3.7-liter V-6, rated at 300 horsepower and 275 pound-feet of torque. Most customers desiring a V-8 will wind up with Ford's new 5.0-liter eight-cylinder, which produces 360 horsepower and 380 pound-feet of torque. Select special-edition models will eschew the 5.0 in favor of the beefy 411-horsepower, 6.2-liter V-8. Regardless of the engine choice, each 2011 F-150 will be equipped with a six-speed automatic.
Focus on Fuel Economy
The availability of the EcoBoost 3.5-liter V-6, the 3.7-liter V-6, and the inclusion of both six-speed automatic transmission and electric power steering across the board suggests Ford's dead serious when it comes to improving fuel economy. The automaker has yet to release finalized figures, but early estimates suggest a regular-cab 4x2 F-150 with the 3.7-liter can return close to 23 mpg on the highway.
Don't look for many -- if any -- major cosmetic changes, inside the cabin. Do, however, take a good look at the instrument cluster -- in high-trim F-150s, an LCD screen is placed smack between the speedometer and tachometer. Ford dubs this a Productivity Screen, and like that offered in the 2011 Super Duty, it displays a variety of different information, including fuel economy, trailer settings, steering angle, and incline.
Ford's already talked up its new 2011 Harley-Davidson F-150 and SuperCrew SVT Raptor, but the company has another gussied-up truck in its portfolio. The reborn 2011 Lariat Limited model is quite similar to the Harley-Davidson model, but utilizes a monochromatic paint scheme, unique 22-inch wheels, a painted grille insert, and special interior trim. Like the Harley and Raptor, power is provided only by the 6.2-liter V-8.