New Website Shows 'Built Ford Tough' 2009 F-150 Outperfoms Competition In Real World Tests
Truck customers can see for themselves how "Built Ford Tough" pickups outperform the competition by visiting the Web site for the all-new 2009 Ford F-150, which launches today.
Mike Rowe, star of the Discovery Channel television show "Dirty Jobs," and F-150 Chief Engineer Matt O'Leary host a series of demonstration videos that capture the all-new F-150 in direct, head-to-head competition with the 2009 Dodge Ram, 2009 Chevrolet Silverado and the 2008 Toyota Tundra in key test areas Ford engineers evaluate when developing trucks.
"We wanted to give people a sense of how we stack up against our competitors in real world scenarios," said O'Leary. "The results validate all the work we've been doing during the last few years to deliver an unbeatable truck in areas that matter most to customers - towing, hauling, fuel economy and durability."
After entering the site, visitors can watch the F-150 in action in four tests filmed at Ford's Michigan Proving Ground - home of the company's unrivaled truck "torture testing." By clicking on a tab at the top of the page, visitors see any of the three competing trucks going through the same test on a "compare cam."
"The taping of the videos was done very meticulously so that the two videos could play simultaneously and in complete synchronization," said O'Leary. "What makes this application noteworthy is that you can select different competitive trucks to view while the F-150 video is playing and the 'compare cam' video will change instantly without any loss of synchronization."
Rowe says seeing two trucks performing in an identically controlled environment lets consumers see and experience what "Built Ford Tough" is all about.
"When you can actually see radically different results, that's the kind of proof that makes sense to somebody who's actually going to use the truck for its intended purpose," Rowe said, citing the durability test as an example.
"You see the F-150 going 25 mph down a straightaway full of bumps, and then you watch the Toyota Tundra do the same thing," Rowe said. "With the Tundra, you see the whole bed coming apart almost in a different direction from where the cab is going. You just don't see that with the F-150."
The difference in performance between the F-150 and the other trucks in all four test areas is striking.
The F-150 beat the competition hands-down in the fuel-efficiency evolution, where the vehicles are tested on a 7.5-mile durability course to see how far each could go on a single gallon of gas.
"It really demonstrates that the unsurpassed fuel economy label achieved by the F-150 delivers in actual driving," said O'Leary. "We have the number no one else can beat - 21 mpg - and real-world tests to prove it."
In the hauling demonstration, the 2009 F-150 and its competitors maneuver through a cone obstacle course with a 993-pound spool of wire in their boxes. Outriggers that spark upon contact with the ground are attached to each of the vehicles to demonstrate the amount of body roll in each turn. By the time the last truck finishes the demonstration, it is clear the 2009 F-150 can carry best-in-class payload while ensuring the most control of the gear put in the back.
The F-150 also proves invincible in the towing test, where all the vehicles are set up to tow a trailer, which applied the real-world situation of an improperly loaded trailer. The all-new F-150 is equipped with standard trailer sway control, which works in conjunction with AdvanceTrac® with RSC®. The technology determines from the yaw motion of the truck if the trailer is swaying and if so, applies precise braking or reduces engine torque to bring both the vehicle and trailer under control.
"Our advanced trailer sway control with optional integrated trailer brake controller is something no other competitor offers, and the results are pretty dramatic when you see the F-150 compared with the other vehicles in the video," said O'Leary.
O'Leary says the demonstration videos are informative - and entertaining.
"Mike is a great partner, and he knows trucks. He's able to explain things in a way that people understand, and he does it with humor," he said. "I get to be the straight man."
Rowe says he enjoyed the experience.
"It gave me a chance to talk to Matt (O'Leary) in a way that's completely unscripted, organic and genuine to the action around us," he said. "Viewers are sophisticated. They know when they're being 'handled,' and they know when they're watching something that's genuine. This is really a genuine way to show the truck off. It's very cool."
In addition to the demonstration videos, the all-new F-150 Web site will feature 15 product feature animations and a historical timeline on "Built Ford Tough" trucks.
2009 Ford F-150 On sale now, the new F-150 delivers class-leading towing capability of 11,300 pounds and hauling capacity of 3,030 pounds - a combination no other competitor can match.
The new truck also offers fuel economy that has improved an average of 8 percent across the entire lineup, thanks to a wide range of engineering enhancements. The fuel economy gains reach as high as 12 percent versus the prior model year on F-150 models equipped with the high-volume three-valve, 5.4-liter V-8 engine.
The new 2009 F-150 is produced at the Dearborn (Mich.) Truck Plant and Kansas City Assembly Plant.