Ford sent a massive truck my way recently, the new 2011 Ford F350 4x4 Crew Cab Super Duty King Ranch edition. This massive truck sported the newly announced 6.7L V-8 Power Stroke turbo diesel engine. This entire truck was awesome, but that new 6.7L engine needs some talking about on its own.
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I have seen diesels, they are rampant in trucks in Texas, that are loud, clattery, and billow clouds of black smoke and I had in my head that all diesels were like that. The new 6.7L Power Stroke is not though. This massive V8 is rated for 400 horsepower at 2800rpm and a massive 800 lb.-ft. of torque at only 1600 rpm. I think you could pull the moon out of orbit with a chain long enough with this motor. The new engine uses an industry first dual-sided compressor turbo for faster throttle response and still being able to provide massive power and towing capability. The motor is also compatible with bio diesel fuel.
All the specs in the world won’t tell you what the new diesel feels like on the road in the 2011 F350 Super Duty. I was honestly shocked at how much performance the 2011 F350 Super Duty has with the 6.7L V8 under the hood. When you stand back and look at the huge size of the Crew Cab F350, you might think it is slow and barge-like in performance. I know I did at first, and I was completely wrong about the truck. From a dead stop when you mash the go pedal, the truck starts to move and you can hear the turbo spool up. Once the turbo spools the truck will flat fly. The turbo lag is noticeable, but once the boost is there the Truck pulls harder than any truck I have driven.
By the seat of the pants the 2011 F350 Super Duty with the 6.7L diesel felt quicker than the Raptor I spent a week with a few months back. I can see why more and more turbo diesel trucks are showing up at the drag strip today, these engines are very capable performers. At the same time the engine offers all this performance, it is also smooth and quiet on the road with a torque curve that seemingly never ends. This truck isn’t all about work and performance though.
The Kind Ranch edition is as much luxury on the inside as it is work under the hood. The leather in this truck is top notch and designed to look like a saddle. Open the door and you can smell the rich leather and all the interior surfaces are designed well and look very attractive. Ford has improved so much on the interiors of its vehicles that luxury brands like Lexus and Audi need to be looking over their shoulders.
While I had the truck, I took it on a road trip to Austin and spent a good eight hours on the highway with the 2011 F350 Super Duty. On smooth pavement, you will forget you are in a massive truck. If that highway gets ripples, potholes, or expansion joints at speed you will remember quickly you are in a truck and not a luxury car. The suspension of the 2011 F350 Super Duty is set up for off roading and towing so with nothing in the truck but four people things can get harsh on some surfaces and your bum will thank you for a break after a while. With the massive diesel engine and the huge size of the truck, I expected to spend a fortune on gas. The truck averaged just over 19 miles to a gallon on the highway, even at speeds of up to 80mph. I barely get that kind of fuel economy in my Mustang.
My test vehicle was loaded to the gills. I have already mentioned it had the King Ranch package. The truck also had preferred equipment package 681A that included the 6-speed auto transmission and the 6.7L engine. Other options included the 11,500-pound GVWR pack, 50 state emissions, power sliding moon roof, 20" premium cast wheels, extra heavy-duty alternator, stowable bed extender, spray in bed liner, tailgate step, and navigation. The massive options list of my tester pushed the sticker price to $54,435 with options alone adding $11,448 to the base price of the truck.
That certainly isn’t cheap for a truck today, but the capabilities that the 2011 F350 Super Duty I tested offers will make it very appealing to the kind of guy who wants a truck with performance, looks, and comfort that can do just about anything they want it too. This truck can work and play with equal abandon.