Opinionated at any speed . . . By: Silvio Calabi
The action in pickup trucks these days seems to be in the bed, with tougher liners, 5th-wheel trailer hookups, tie-downs, storage boxes, lights, power outlets and tailgates that open gently instead of crashing down like old toilet lids. Some trucks offer a split gate, which can open to the side, like a door, or fold down horizontally. Another option is a loading ramp, rugged steel sections that unbolt from the sides of the bed and hook onto the lip of the gate. The tailgate on this F250 über-truck has a stowaway step and grab bar, which make clambering up into (and down out of) the tall bed a breeze. And the bed itself is big enough to swallow an inflatable dinghy.
For $86,395, however, we expect more than just a trick tailgate and a big bed, and we get it: a rumbling Power Stroke turbo-diesel V-8 rated for 475 horsepower and 1,050 lb-ft of torque; four-wheel-drive configured for towing; and a heavy-duty 10-speed automatic transmission, which helps achieve 18 miles per gallon in light use. Another significant add-on here is the aptly named Tremor off-road package, which includes skid plates and special wheels and tires.
Despite its size, once you’ve hoisted yourself up into the cab, driving and even parking this beast is easy, thanks to adjustable pedals as well as proximity sensors and cameras all around. Passengers don’t complain either—the cavernous, leather-lined Crew Cab has all the comforts and conveniences of a luxury sedan.
Pickup trucks are like boats: You may not want one, but you’d like a friend to have one and invite you along (on the boat) or loan it out (the truck). But if you already have a boat, particularly a big one on a trailer, you almost have to have a pickup too. This one, for instance, with its tow rating of 15,000 pounds. If somehow that isn’t enough, you can step up to Ford’s F450 Super Duty equipped for a maximum GCWR (gross combined weight rating) of 45,300 pounds. Yikes.