What is arguably the most popular pickup truck in the world, the Ford F-150 has been completely redesigned for the 2021 model year. It has revised new looks, a lot more safety & convenience features, and a new hybrid powertrain.
Starting with that hybrid powertrain, the 2021 Ford F-150 will use a 47 hp electric motor integrated into the transmission to provide a boost to the 3.5L twin-turbocharged V6 engine. Ford has not provided exact specifications on this new powertrain but they claim that it will be the most powerful of any full-size pickup. EPA rates this hybrid powertrain at 700 miles (1,127 km) of range on a tank of gas and tow 12,000 lbs or more. The hybrid powertrain will be offered on XL to Limited trims in the SuperCrew cab configuration only.
Other powertrain options remain relatively unchanged from the current generation F-150. The only major change is that the base 3.3L V6 will now be offered with a 10-speed automatic rather than the 6-speed automatic of the current F-150.
A new “Active Drive Assist” feature will drive the 2021 Ford F-150 on certain divided highways without any intervention from the driver. This new system is similar to Cadillac’s SuperCruise in which it utilizes a driver facing camera to make sure that the driver is paying attention when the system is active and they can then take their hands off the steering wheel when on a highway. The hardware for the system will be available at launch in the Fall but customers will have to pay to activate it in the Summer of next year.
The 2021 Ford F-150 will come standard with automatic emergency braking, pedestrian detection, auto-dimming high beams, automatic headlights, and a rearview camera. In addition, other advanced safety features will be available and they include an intersection monitor that detects oncoming traffic when taking a left turn, an updated automatic parking function that can guide the vehicle out of a parking space, adaptive cruise control, lane centering, evasive steering assist, post-collision braking, and reverse automatic braking.
The interior of the 2021 F-150 is completely new with base trucks receiving a standard 8-inch touchscreen while higher trim models will receive a landscape oriented 12-inch touchscreen. Both screens will display Ford’s new Sync 4 infotainment system that has twice the processing power of their current Sync 3 system. It will also feature wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Higher trim models of the Ford F-150 will also feature a collapsible shifter which when folded, provides a flat surface for individuals to work on and the area can accommodate a 15-inch laptop.
The most important part of any pickup truck, the bed, has also been updated with the 2021 Ford F-150. It is now available with on onboard generator than can provide either 2 kw, 2.4 kw, or 7.2 kw of power but only the hybrid model will be available with the 7.2kw power output. The new generator can power multiple tools at once and the hybrid model can also provide a 240 Volt, 30-watt outlet in the bed. The tailgate can be customized to provide a work area. It features an integrated ruler, clamp pockets, a pencil holder, a device holder, and a cupholder. New bed lighting better covers the entirety of the truck bed and owners can choose which lights to turn on individually via the Sync 4 system or the Ford app.
The exterior design, although new, doesn’t look very dissimilar from the current generation of the F-150. C-shaped LED daytime running lights accent the available LED headlights and fog lamps. Ford says that they will offer 11 different grille types depending on the model & packages and they will include active grille shutters for better aerodynamics at higher speeds. LED taillights mimic the front headlights with “F-150” stamped into the tailgate.
The 2021 Ford F-150 will go on sale in the Fall with detailed specifications & prices announced closer to launch.