Ford adds diesel engine to F-150 for the first time

2018 Ford F-150 Power Stroke

The 2.7-liter EcoBoost Ford F-150 is rated 26-mpg highway by the EPA.

Pickup trucks aren't supposed to get great fuel economy. But with the addition of the new Power Stroke diesel, Ford is hoping to deliver the sort of numbers that, not all that, long ago, would have been impressive coming from a compact sedan.

Ford's diesel V-6 shared technology with the 6.7-liter Power Stroke engine that has powered its Super Duty trucks since 2011.

Considering that Ford sold almost 900,000 F-150s in 2017, about 300,000 more than the Chevrolet Silverado, its nearest competitor, that would be no small feat. The time is right, executives said, because new technology enabled a smooth and quiet ride that is traditionally hard to achieve with a diesel powertrain. Ford will show the vehicle at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit later this month.

Ford said F-150 will have an advanced power-train lineup with a best in class torque. That beats its closest rival, the Ram 1500 Ecodiesel, by over a ton and puts it in the upper echelon of all light duty pickups. It'll even be available in F-150s fitted with the off-road FX4 package, but a Raptor diesel is not in the offing.

For its part, Ford had been focusing on turbocharged alternatives, such as the 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6 that matched the towing capacity of its classic, naturally aspirated 5.0-liter V-8.

The F-150 diesels will offer a choice of rear- or 4-wheel drive. But turbos do have their drawbacks, notably a sharp drop in mileage under heavy loads - such as on steep hills, aggressive acceleration and extreme towing situations.

Dave Filipe, Ford's Vice President of Global Powertrain Engineering, calls the 2018 Ford F-150's new 3.0-liter Power Stroke diesel the sort of engine "that dreams are made of".

It's a move to increase the range of its popular F-150 pickup and attract new buyers in the unusually loyal truck market. That shaved as much as 700 pounds off the weight of prior-generation F-150 models.

The diesel engine will be available on F-150 Lariat, King Ranch and Platinum trims in either 4×2 or 4×4 configuration.

The Ford engine will be on display at the Detroit auto show, formally known as the North American International Auto Show, which opens to the public January 20. A variable-geometry turbocharger boosts the truck.

Ford claims that the truck is able to achieve 30 miles per gallon (mpg) - a highway fuel efficiency comparable to many midsized cars.

Ford Motor offering a diesel engine in its F-150 pickup for the first time. Pre-collision mitigation with pedestrian detection, adaptive cruise control with stop-go capability, and WiFi hotspots are other new available features added this model year.

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