In the eternal arms race between full-size American truck makers, you can never be too tough or too tough-looking. That's why Ford has updated the sheet metal of the best-selling F-150 pickup to reinforce its image as a total powerhouse.
Taking cues from the Super Duty line of trucks, the 2018 F-150 gains a horizontal twin-bar grille that emphasizes the truck's width. That grille is bookended by C-shaped LED headlights with daytime running lights, while the hood and fenders are chamfered, a cue that Ford says underscores the F-150's power and toughness.
"We wanted to continue with the billet-milled style introduced in 2015 while visually making the truck look wide and planted," explained Sean Tant, Ford's truck studio design manager.
Around the side, the F-150's profile continues the drop-down in the front door window openings that originated in the company's bigger trucks. Huge wheel openings with large-diameter tires wrapping six all-new wheel designs ranging from 17 inches to a whopping 22 inches give the F-150 the killer proportions customers expect.
It is the same for the bumpers, which are frame-mounted and can be chrome-plated, in line with customer preferences. “Form and function matters to Ford truck customers,” says Ford truck design chief Gordon Platto. “Chrome conveys durability and functionality in our customers’ eyes.
At the rear, the 2018 F-150 mirrors the front end design philosophy, with a billet-milled treatment around the fenders, taillights and tailgate.
“These customers know our 'Built Ford Tough DNA,'" Platto said, "and they want their trucks to convey strength, capability, boldness and power."