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Ford finally tackling Ram diesel

by David Zatz on

The 2018 Ford F-150 will, at long last, gain a small diesel engine and wide-ratio automatic transmission, bringing it roughly to parity with the Ram 1500 diesel — though with lower weight (and higher build cost).

ford f150

The 3-liter diesel engine, dubbed “PowerStroke” — the same name as Ford’s bigger diesels — will be coupled with a ten speed automatic developed with General Motors. Not paying royalties may give Ford a cost break versus Ram, which uses ZF eight-speed automatics. Both Ford and Ram plan to use stop-start widely.

The company is also updating its various six-cylinder truck engines and making the ten speed available with all three engines, rather than just the turbocharged 3.5 V6.  The F-150 will keep its shaver-over-truck-grille look while the heavier duty models will drop the chrome bars. The 2018s go on sale in the fall; the diesels, in summer 2018.

Ford relies heavily on F-150 sales, which totaled around 820,000 in 2016. Ram is busily expanding capacity for its own pickups, suggesting that the company has full confidence in the 2019 Ram 1500 and 2020 Ram 2500-3500 going forward.

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