Known as one of the toughest-built American pickups of all time, the Ford F150 has been around truckin’ for over 60 years now.
With durability, reliability, and cargo space like no other, there are about a hundred reasons why it is known as the great American pickup. Let’s hop in and see what makes this thing so instantly recognizable.
A History of the Ford F150
The history of the F150 can be traced back to 1917 when Ford built their very first truck known as the Model TT. The F-Series was first introduced to the U.S. public in 1948, though at the time, they were known as Bonus-Built trucks. This was because these cars were built atop a dedicated truck platform, unlike the previous Ford trucks that were used on a wartime chassis.
Technology and Innovations of the F150 – Changing The History Of Ford Forever
The 2019 Ford F150 comes in four different trim packages including XL, XLT, Lariat, and King Ranch. There are six available engines ranging from V-6 Twin-turbo gas EcoBoost to Turbo Diesel V-6. Some of the high-quality features include smart capability, driver assistance, hill-descent control, and pre-collision assist.
A Timeline of the F150 – From the TT To Today
- Ford F150 First Generation (1948-1952)
The first generation included the F-1 through the F-8, panel trucks rated in terms of weight. They were the first post-war Fords after WWII.
- Ford F150 Second Generation (1953-1956)
The second generation saw a completely updated chassis, more interior space, and a 239 CID overhead valve V-8 Y-Block engine. Power steering was introduced for the first time.
- Ford F150 Third Generation (1957-1960)
The hood was integrated with the bodywork in 1957 to create a clamshell-style truck. A heavy-duty tilt-cab C-Series replaced the cab-over F-Series for delivery use.
- Ford F150 Fourth Generation (1961-1966)
The Twin I-Beam was added in the fourth generation to allow more maneuverability. The F150 saw the introduction of a four-door crew-cab.
- Ford F150 Fifth Generation (1967-1972)
A new grille was added during the fifth generation, as well as optional AM/FM radio. It was also the very first year to have factory-installed air conditioning.
- Ford F150 Sixth Generation (1973-1979)
Significant sixth-generation changes included more interior cabin space, improved air, and heating, added front disc brakes, and a relocated gas tank. It became the “best selling truck of all time” in 1975.
- Ford F150 Seventh Generation (1980-1986)
The F150 saw a complete redesign in 1980 with improved fuel economy and aerodynamics. Diesel-power was added to the model in 1984, and the F150 ditched the “3-on-the-tree” manual design.
- Ford F150 Eighth Generation (1987-1991)
The eighth-generation utilized a rounded front clip and a brand new interior. This was the first time that the F150 featured 5-speed manual OD transmission.
- Ford F150 Ninth Generation (1992-1996)
The ninth-generation F150s had upgraded dashboards and driver’s side airbags. This was the first generation with remoteless key entry and a compact disc player.
- Ford F150 Tenth Generation (1997-2003)
The F-150 was split into the F-250 and 350 during these years, as the F-150 became a more “personal use-style” truck. A 4.9 inline-six was put in place of the V6 engine, and fully-independent front suspension was introduced.
- Ford F150 Eleventh Generation (2004-2008)
All F150s had four doors in the eleventh generation, and the Triton engine was introduced. For the first time, the F150s were equipped with optional navigation systems.
- Ford F150 Twelfth Generation (2009-2014)
The twelfth generation F150 featured a three-bar-grille and a much lighter chassis with increased towing capacity. The twin-turbo EcoBoost V-6 was first offered in 2011.
- Ford F150 Thirteenth Generation (2015-Present)
The thirteenth generation features an array of safety controls, from adaptive cruise control and radar sensors. The engine became far more efficient with a few EcoBoost twin-turbo choices.
The Ford F150 In the News
Ford just recently launched a campaign to show the prototype electric F150’s towing strength. Watch the video below to see this electric pickup tow a train weighing 1.25 million pounds.
Celebrity Endorsements of the F150
No truck is as tough as an F150. That is probably why so many celebrities, including John Goodman, Alice Walton, Scott Disick, and Toby Keith, love driving their F150s.
Best Ford F150 Groups
The F150 Mafia is an officially recognized Ford F150 club with access to tons of cool gear, a booming social media presence, and different chapters worldwide.
The Ford F150 – Built Tough
For over four decades, Ford has been at the top of the American truck game. We can thank the pure strength and prowess of the F150, a truck that will likely continue to act as the American workhorse for generations to come.