Ford’s F150 pickup truck is its best seller, so the automaker is doubling down and introducing an off-road version -- the F150 Tremor.
The new model looks a lot like the standard F150, at least at first glance. But it includes an all-terrain equipment upgrade to handle uneven surfaces. Other features include upgraded suspension and driveline hardware, increased suspension travel, approach, break-over, and departure angles. It also comes with a standard rear locking differential and an available front Torsen limited-slip differential.
Other available features include new off-road technologies such as enhanced Trail Control, Trail One-Pedal Drive, and Trail Turn Assist.
The Tremor, when it goes on sale in summer 2021, will come in three versions. Each version will have a standard F-150 Raptor-style bash plate, plus other design features that will distinguish it from the standard F150. Todd Eckert, Ford truck group marketing manager, said the model is the result of research into how customers use the F150. Apparently, many owners take it into some fairly rugged territory.
“F-150 Tremor provides the additional off-road capability they’re looking for with our latest off-road technologies,” Eckert said.
Major profit center
The F150 truck is a significant profit center for Ford. The company launched the F-Series trucks in 1948. In addition to the full-size pickup, now in its 14th generation, the line also includes larger Super Duty trucks.
According to CNBC, Ford’s F-Series trucks generate a majority of the automaker’s profits and about $42 billion in annual revenue. In 2017, Ford announced it was phasing out sedans to focus on trucks and SUVs, which have a higher profit margin.
The F150 Tremor will have plenty of competition. In September, U.S. News and World Report rated the available off-road trucks and put the Chevrolet Colorado, Nissan Titan Pro 4X, and Toyota Tundra TRD Pro at the top of the heap.
The 16 trucks in the rankings carry sticker prices of between $48,000 and $52,000. In Tuesday’s announcement, Ford did not disclose any pricing information for the F150 Tremor.