2011 Ford F-250 King Ranch 4x4

I put the F-250 to work over the weekend, hauling 4320 pounds of wood and concrete to the landfill. Both loaded and unloaded, the new Super Duty moved comfortably and confidently, thanks largely to that new 6.7-liter diesel engine. I was particularly impressed with the smooth shifts of the six-speed automatic, as many of these high-torque heavy haulers often display compromised shift quality. You won't mistake it for a Mercedes-Benz gearbox, but an F-250 driven normally shifts consistently without significant lurches.

Remember that Chevy ad with Howie Long making fun of Ford's tailgate step? My labor this weekend proved just how out of touch Chevy's agency was when they conceived that spot. I filled the bed with chunks of concrete ranging from fist-sized pieces to eighty-pound hunks. Loading those biggest pieces required climbing into the bed, a feat that would have been impossible without the step. Instead of simply "walking up the stairs," you'd be forced to set your load on the tailgate, hoist yourself in, bend down and pick up your load, and then move it where needed. The tailgate step definitely makes work faster and easier on your body.

I was a bit frustrated by Ford's bed extender. In its stored position, it takes up a fair amount of space in the box and removing it requires a Torx driver larger than anything I own. It would be nice if the two bolts were replaced with a quick-release system for when you have an unexpected need to remove it.

The cabin is comfortable and the controls are quite intuitive, however I was a bit surprised by how poor the materials are in this $65,000 truck. Sure, you don't purchase a heavy-duty truck for the interior, but you do buy a King Ranch for the interior. Everything looks nice enough, but the plastics are seriously cheap, creaking and squeaking almost every time you touch them. Even the turn signal has this disconcerting crunch-squish when you activate it.

Eric Tingwall

Did you lock the keys in the truck on the day of the photo shoot? There aren't any pics of the interior.
Phil Floraday moderator
All new diesel engines are expensive because the emissions requirements have become incredibly tough. The exhaust system alone costs a small fortune. Emissions come at some price. all new trucks also include a lot more safety and luxury features now than ever before. I don't always agree with it, but that's the state of the industry right now.
Workhorse... True, but why are they making these diesels so outrageously priced? Diesels are work trucks. My parents own a farm and I moved hay today with my dad's 2006 F-350 Powerstroke at 20,000 pounds per load (this truck was about $45,000 new), and suffice it to say that did not involve any on-road work. In fact, the terrain it pulled the loaded flatbed over is impassable for anything but ATVs, tractors and 4x4s. I have driven the new Powerstroke and it is nice... but definitely not $65,000 nice. When you guys act impressed about pulling a 4,800 pound trailer without incident, I remember pulling 20,000 pound trailers at 80 mph with a 2006 and wonder how you can really write a positive review about a $65,000 truck. Considering the condition of the economy now compared to even 5 years ago (before I started college), how is Ford trying to sell a truck 150% the price of the 2006 model with an added 5% performance? I really hope Volkswagen and Toyota run American carmakers out of business.
"......a total workhorse." $65,000.00......I am without words.

New Car Research

our instagram

get Automobile Magazine

Subscribe to the magazine and save up to 84% off the newsstand price


new cars

Read Related Articles