The F-150 Limited, unveiled on Tuesday aims to set a new standard of comfort fit and finish in the increasingly competitive pickup sector.
Just as the original Range Rover was born out of Land Rover owners' increasing need for something that was equal parts work horse and comfortable, respectable road car, the pickup truck has metamorphosed significantly from a piece of farmyard equipment into something that can offer even the most discerning customer what they need.
And as America's most popular pickup maker, Ford currently leads the pack in this respect. However, with news that that titan of luxury, Mercedes-Benz is looking to bring its automotive skillset to the pickup sector, Ford is truly pulling out all of the stops on its latest flagship truck to ensure it stands out from all competition -- foreign and domestic.
"The F-150 Limited sets a new bar for what discerning customers should expect in a high-end truck," said Raj Nair, Ford group vice president, Global Product Development. "We're adding segment-exclusive technology, and features that improve productivity, convenience and capability with distinctive style."
And while luxury is high on the agenda, a host of standard features are about simplicity and practicality, particularly for those looking to hitch a boat or an Airstream to the vehicle. A hitch assist system makes connecting a trailer simple while Pro Trailer Backup Assist (a segment first) takes the headache out of maneuvering while towing. A knob inside the cabin can be turned to direct the trailer, then the truck takes over the steering and speed of movement, whether it's to launch a boat into the water or position a caravan on its pitch.
As for creature comforts, the car gets heated and cooled leather seats with a 10-setting massage function, real wood and aluminum trim, a 10-way speaker system and infotainment system. The tailgate can be operated remotely and the running boards can be deployed and retracted at the touch of a button to improve ground clearance.
Safety systems include automatic lane keeping, a 360-degree camera and cross-traffic alert while outside, special touches include a unique front grille design and 22-inch alloy wheels.
Under the hood lurks an EcoBoost V6 that outputs 365hp and a combined fuel economy of 20mpg (14.1l/100km), and when selected with four-wheel drive it's paired with both a six-speed automatic transmission and a two-speed automatic box for switching power between two and four wheels based on conditions.
Prices are yet to be announced but expect the Limited F 150 to cost in the region of $55,000 (€50,000) when it goes on sale later this year.