2012 Ford F-150 to increase its payload capacity

Article by Christian Andrei, on July 21, 2011

Ford’s upgrades for its 2012 Supercrew models were centered on raising their payloads. The largest improvement was made on the 2012 EcoBoost-powered two-wheel drive Supercrew with a 6.5-foot bed. Its payload capacity went from 2,000 pounds (900kg) to 2,590 pounds(1180kg).

Ford is planning that the 4X4 version of the same model would go up from 1,890 pounds(860kg) to 2,340(1061kg)pounds maximum payload with the 6.5-foot loading area.

It’s quite common for these models to add a few pounds but Ford’s upgrades are quite significant. There’s no denying that a 600(272kg) pound gain is highly notable.

The added weight is due to Ford’s decision to extend the availability of its heavy-duty payload package from the Regular cab and Supercab configurations with eight-foot beds, to the more famous Supercrew.

With the configuration change, Ford increased the thickness of the frame rails and added heavy duty shock absorbers, extra engine cooling and auxiliary transmission cooler.

Ford actually didn’t increase the payload capacities for the 5.5-foot bed-equipped Supercrew. This is explained by the use of the same frame from the Supercab and the Supercrew permitting the carryover of the Heavy-duty Payload package.

As the packages are now heavier, Ford decided to add seven-lug wheels, which have fewer available aftermarket replacements compared to the more common six-lug variants. It should be mentioned that increasing the additional weight capacity by adding heavy-duty parts will have a negative impact on fuel economy, acceleration and deceleration.

The 2011 Ford F-150 features a new 3.5 L EcoBoost engine, which gives it great towing capability, fuel economy and top-notch torque.

Derrick Kuzak, Ford Group’s vice president for global product development, commented that their customers have adopted the EcoBoost solution to give them the power they need without compromising fuel economy. Ford has promised that the EcoBoost solution would be present in every engine available to every customer. The EcoBoost engine you have for the 2011 F-150 will deliver on the promised fuel economy and performance and Kuzak said that the engine has been specially tuned and thoroughly tested to also deliver top-notch towing capabilities.

EcoBoost’s key technologies, such as direct fuel injection and turbocharging, are especially beneficial for the 2011 Ford F150 customers. This combination of direct fuel injection and turbocharging, for instance, gives you low-end torque that is maintained over a broad range of RPMs. Towing is easy when the engine delivers 365 hp of power and 420 lb. ft. of torque. All that can help you tow a three-horse trailer, a boat and just about anything that weighs less than 11,300 pounds. Want a bonus? The EcoBoost engine uses regular fuel!

Ford’s V6 engines program manager, Jim Mazuchowski, says that F150 customers should think of the EcoBoost engine as a gas-powered engine that could easily do what a diesel powered engine could do. The direct injection and turbochargers help make towing virtually effortless, while also making acceleration painless.

Most of the truck engine’s peak torque is available at a range of 1,700 rpm to 5,000 rpm. Other vehicles in the same class having a V8 engine could only reach peak torque at around 4,000 rpm.

Mazuchowski adds that this is a good thing because reaching peak torque at lower engine speeds and then being able to hold that torque for a longer range means more fuel efficiency and towing capacity that the competition can only dream about.

The F150 EcoBoost truck engine also has Ti-VCT, or twin independent variable camshaft timing. The Ti-VCT helps save fuel by controlling the timing for exhaust and intake valves. In the same manner, Ti-VCT also helps cut down emissions, especially when you have a partially open throttle. That means you have maximum fuel economy when the engine is at part throttle yet it still gives you top performance and power in full throttle.

Additionally, Ti-VCT makes the F150 so much easier to drive and increases the SUV’s responsiveness.

Rigorous testing

All Ford truck engines go through a rigorous testing program. The EcoBoost truck engine definitely did. Powertrain operations manager Kris Norman explains that the EcoBoost truck engine went through the same battery of tests that other F-150 truck engines did and although it’s specially designed for the F-150, the new engine passed all reliability and durability tests.

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