Buying Guide

2012 Ford F-150

Fair Market Price $13,705 STX 2WD Styleside Regular Cab

EPA MPG:

17 City / 23 Hwy

Towing (Max):

8,300 lbs.

Payload (Max):

1,710 lbs.

The F-series pickup sits at the very top of the U.S. sales chart — in fact, no other vehicle comes close. That means this humble pickup is the most important vehicle in the Ford lineup, so it tends to get a lot of attention. Last year the powertrain lineup was extensively revamped with the addition of Ford’s first EcoBoost truck engine, a 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged V-6. In addition, a 3.7-liter V-6 and two V-8s (5.0 and 6.2 liters) are ready to be put to work. All four engines are mated to a relatively sophisticated six-speed automatic transmission. As always, the F-150 is available in a multitude of configurations, with three cabs, two bed lengths, and Trim Levels that range from the workhorse XL all the way to the top-of-the-line Platinum model. In addition, there’s the SVT Raptor, a high-performance truck that gets a new Torsen front differential for even greater off-road ability. Then there’s the Harley-Davidson F-150, with new twenty-two-inch wheels, chrome twin exhausts, and custom graphics, along with the same 6.2-liter V-8 found in the Raptor. With so many versions to choose from, the F-series represents a near-perfect meld of utilitarian practicality and indulgent user-friendliness. Whether your needs call for a vehicle you can use to haul a trailer or one that you can race off-road, the F-series has a model to fill the bill — which explains why it’s the best-selling vehicle in America.

Drive: Rear-wheel, 4-wheel
Trim Levels: XL, STX, XLT, FX2, FX4, Lariat, King Ranch, Platinum, Harley-Davidson, SVT Raptor
Body Style: Pickup, 3-, 5-, or 6-passenger
Engines: 3.5L twin-turbo V-6, 365 hp, 420 lb-ft
3.7L V-6, 302 hp, 278 lb-ft (E85 capable)
5.0L V-8, 360 hp, 380 lb-ft (E85 capable)
6.2L V-8, 411 hp, 434 lb-ft
Transmission: 6-speed automatic
Capacities: Towing 5500-11,300 lb; payload 920-3060 lb

As usual, Ford has lavished plenty of attention on the F-150, with a new FX appearance package and several new technologies, including hill-start assist and an automatic 4×4 system for the Lariat model and up. The Raptor gets a new front differential, new graphics, and an optional 145-inch-wheelbase SuperCrew cab. The Harley-Davidson has new graphics, a new black-and-white color combination, and new twenty-two-inch wheels.

Front, side, and side curtain air bags are standard, as are ABS, traction and stability control, and a tire-pressure monitoring system. The SOS Post-Crash Alert System sounds the horn three times at four-second intervals to alert bystanders if the air bags have deployed.

All: 11-17 mpg city/14-23 mpg highway

  • Quality engine lineup
  • Tows and hauls like a champ
  • Wide variety of models
  • You could spend a week
    reading the options sheet

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