Agriculture is as ingrained in the American psyche as the pickup trucks you find down on the farm. So what better partnership for Ford and its F-150 pickup, and what better place to introduce the updated 2013 Ford F-150 model, than with the leaders of the Future Farmers of America in Bruceville, Texas?
The 2013 Ford F-150 gets a series of updates, nothing earth-shaking, but enough for truck loving die-hards to take notice. As seen in spy photos, there’s a new grille design for the XLT, borrowing the two-bar “C-clamp” design currently used on the heavy-duty F-Series pickups. The more upscale Lariat models, on the other hand, will retain the three-bar grille, albeit one that’s softened with mesh inserts in the bars themselves. Flanking the grille are available high-intensity discharge (HID) headlights, with a distinctive interior design, and there are new 18- and 20-inch wheel designs available through the various model packages. If “truck” means “luxury” to you, and the current Platinum model just isn’t quite swanky enough for you, fear not as Ford’s all-new Limited F-150 promises to lay on an even thicker layer of frosting.
Inside, all Ford F-150 models from XLT on up will get Ford’s SYNC technology as standard equipment; that’s not surprising, as SYNC is pretty much everywhere in Ford-branded vehicles these days. However, it comes with a redesigned center stack that includes a 4.2-inch LCD screen that displays audio and climate control functions. You can add other features as well, such as live traffic info; turn-by-turn directions with the ability to upload info from Google Maps and MapQuest; and news, sports, weather and even horoscopes, so superstitious contractors can decide how many extra weeks to stretch out that bathroom remodel. On the instrument cluster itself is a 4.2-inch driver configurable LCD display that includes menus for setting up the gauges, a trip computer, fuel economy, towing, off-road, and other functions.
Step up to Lariat, King Ranch, Platinum or the new Limited, and you’ll get the full MyFord touch treatment, complete with an 8-inch LCD touch-screen display in the dash, two USB inputs, an SD card reader, and the option of a navigation system. Ford says that the new system is tailored to truck owners, and can be used with work gloves. Along with the MyFord and upgraded SYNC in the dash comes a new center stack design, with new knobs for climate control, audio control, and other functions. Platinum and Lariat models get new interior trim, and of course, there are still thousands of ways to tailor an F-150 to individual needs.
Under the hood, there’s not much that has changed. The same V-6 and V-8 engine configurations are still available, including the much ballyhooed 3.5-liter EcoBoost. For more, check out the walkaround video featuring Rav Sarkar, the Ford F-150 marketing manager.
As for the Future Farmers of America tie-in, well, it goes back decades for Ford. The company has worked with the organization since 1948, as FFA helps to promote the necessary business and agricultural skills required on a modern farm. Ford and its dealerships in agriculturally diverse areas sponsor the Built Ford Tough Scholarship Program, giving out $1,000 grants to 540 individuals for their education. Over the 15 years of its existence, the scholarship program has awarded $7.1 million in grants.