Ford F-150 winner of 2012 MT Truck of Year will be at 2012 NAIAS in Detroit

In time for 2012 NAIAS, the Motor Trend 2012 Truck of the Year: Ford F-150

Always preceding the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit, nobody at TorqueNews seems surprised the 2012 Ford F-150 has been awarded the prestigious Motor Trend Truck of the Year® award.
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The 2012 Ford F-150, which established a new standard for full-size pickups with best-in-class fuel efficiency and capability, was recently named Motor Trend’s 2012 Truck of the Year®. This is the fourth time the Ford F-150 has won the Motor Trend accolade; and once again was announced just before next month's North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit, Michigan, where TorqueNews reporters will cover during media days.

In fact, the F-150 has won the award more times than any other truck; meaning, the most awards for any truck since Motor Trend began presenting its Truck of the Year award in 1989. The Ford pickup received the magazine’s prestigious award for previous groundbreaking new models in 1997, 2004 and 2009.

Of course, this award always precedes the 2012 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit.

According to the Ford news release, the F-150 had outshone all other contenders in various tests that evaluated the truck’s design, engineering, performance, efficiency, safety and value. With class-leading fuel efficiency, capability and durability coupled with affordable technology, the 2012 Ford F-150 meets the demands of today’s full-size light-duty pickup customers.

“The 2012 F-150 is a no-compromise solution that can be tailored to fit virtually every customer’s needs, and the Motor Trend Truck of the Year award further reinforces that this is truly the best choice for America’s truck owners,” said Mark Fields, Ford president of The Americas. “We are proud to receive this award and even more pleased that our F-150 customers have additional validation of their top choice.”

Motor Trend editors applauded F-150 because, they said, “F-150s are built to work and felt better the more they were challenged. Ford offers an enormous variety of configurations and designs, making the truck tailorable to just about any need. It’s the combination of advancement in design, engineering excellence, efficiency, safety, value, and the performance of intended function that has earned the Ford F-150 the title of Motor Trend’s 2012 Truck of the Year.”

With more than a half-million sales through November and a lead of almost 150,000 sales versus the nearest competitor, the Ford F-Series is on track this year to extend its streak of truck leadership to 35 straight years.

Helping spark the F-150’s continued success is the powerful and fuel-efficient 3.5-liter EcoBoost® engine, which now accounts for more than 40 percent of F-150 retail sales and is on pace to exceed 100,000 sales in less than a year on the market.

More capability, more technology

The 2012 F-150 offers customers plenty of technologies that boost capability, performance, driving enjoyment and fuel efficiency. One such technology is the class-exclusive electric power-assisted steering (EPAS). The system has been carefully tuned with sophisticated speed mapping to deliver accurate responses at high speed while remaining light and manageable in parking maneuvers. Ford is the first manufacturer to widely offer EPAS on full-size pickup trucks. Furthermore, EPAS contributes about a 4 percent fuel-economy benefit compared with conventional hydraulic systems.

A 4.2-inch LCD message center that features information related to fuel economy, towing performance and off-roading, SYNC® AppLink™ and SiriusXM Travel Link also are among the customer conveniences available.

New features for 2012 include:

36-gallon fuel tank on 4x4 F-150 EcoBoost-equipped units providing best-in-class 756 miles of driving range
Two-speed automatic 4x4 system on Lariat, King Ranch, Harley-Davidson and Platinum models for improved all-weather traction
Hill Start Assist, which helps keep the truck from rolling backward at a stop, making it easier to pull away when on a slope or hill, especially when towing
Best-in-class payload capability of 3,120 pounds

Fuel-efficient and powerful offerings

All of the changes for the 2012 model year complement a powertrain lineup that debuted in 2011. The powertrain lineup delivers a mix of best-in-class fuel economy, horsepower, torque and capability. Ford is also the first and only manufacturer to equip its entire full-size pickup truck lineup with a fuel-saving six-speed automatic transmission as standard. Engine highlights include:

3.7-liter four-valve Ti-VCT V6:
Best-in-class 302 horsepower at 6,500 rpm vs. V6 competitors
Unsurpassed 278 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,000 rpm vs. V6 competitors
Best-in-class 17 mpg city and best-in-class 23 mpg highway (4x2)
Best-in-class 6,100 pounds maximum trailer tow vs. V6 competitors

5.0-liter four-valve DOHC Ti-VCT V8:
Best-in-class 360 horsepower at 5,500 rpm vs. standard V8 competitors
Best-in-class 380 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,250 rpm vs. standard V8 competitors
21 mpg highway, unsurpassed 15 mpg city (4x2)
Best-in-class 10,000 pounds maximum trailer tow vs. standard V8 competitors

6.2-liter two-valve SOHC V8:
Best-in-class 411 horsepower at 5,500 rpm vs. all competitors
Best-in-class 434 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,500 rpm vs. all competitors
13 mpg city, 18 mpg highway (4x2)
Best-in-class 11,300 pounds maximum trailer tow vs. all competitors

3.5-liter Ti-VCT EcoBoost:
365 horsepower at 5,000 rpm on regular fuel
Best-in-class 420 lb.-ft. of torque at 2,500 rpm vs. premium V8 competitors
Up to 90 percent peak torque available from 1,700 rpm to 5,000 rpm
22 mpg highway, 16 mpg city (4x2)
Best-in-class 11,300 pounds maximum trailer tow vs. all competitors
Best-in-class 3,120 pounds payload vs. all competitors

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About the Reporter: After 39 years in the auto industry as a design engineer, Frank Sherosky now trades stocks, futures and writes articles, books and ebooks like, "Perfecting Corporate Character," "Awaken Your Speculator Mind", and "Millennial World Order" via authorfrank.com. He may be contacted here by email: [email protected] and followed in Twitter under @Authorfranks
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