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Tuesday, September 27, 2022
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Last call for diesel F-150: Ford sees hybrid version of top-selling pickup as its replacement

Ford confirmed Monday that the light-duty diesel version of its F-150 full-size pickup—badged Power Stroke—is being discontinued.

Although the cancellation comes just weeks after the debut of the fully electric 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning and a fleet-focused F-150 Lightning Pro, Ford made clear that the decision isn’t directly related to that model. Instead, the reason is a different electrified model: the F-150 Hybrid, which is badged Power Boost.

“For customers who need maximum towing torque, we now offer the F-150 Power Boost as the ideal combination of capability, power and fuel efficiency, which wasn’t available when Power Stroke was introduced,” said Ford spokesperson Dawn McKenzie.

The F-150 hybrid can tow up to 12,700 pounds in 4×2 versions, while the F-150 diesel is rated at 12,100 pounds. The hybrid can also operate in generator mode to offer up to 7.2 kw of power, good for a worksite or campsite.

The F-150 diesel arrived for the 2018 model year, hitting a noteworthy 30-mpg EPA highway rating (with 22 mpg city and 25 combined) in 4×2 form, although for 2020 its ratings dropped by 1 mpg across the board. The Power Boost Hybrid, on the other hand, excels in city driving, with 25 mpg city, 26 highway, 25 combined.

The 3.0-liter turbodiesel V-6 engine in the F-150 Power Stroke is assembled at Dagenham, England, alongside nearly identical units bound for Jaguar Land Rover vehicles. Back when we first drove this model in 2018, we found it to be exceptionally refined, sprightly, and confidence-inspiring but not quite up to the fuel-efficiency its EPA ratings suggested in real-world use.

At the time of its launch, Ford pitched the Power Stroke in part to fleets, and the automaker offered up charts to show how soon its 30 mpg would pay off a premium of as much as $4,000.

Although diesel passenger cars have exited the market since the Volkswagen diesel scandal of 2015 and 2016, the technology has managed to stage a minor comeback in light-duty pickups and SUVs. Stellantis (formerly Fiat Chrysler) currently offers a 3.0-liter turbodiesel V-6 in the Jeep Wrangler and Gladiator and the Ram 1500 Eco Diesel. GM offers a 3.0-liter turbodiesel inline-6 in its full-size pickups and is expanding the availability of it to the company’s full-size, body-on-frame SUVs—the Cadillac Escalade, GMC Yukon, and Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban.

Ford will still offer diesel engines in its Super Duty (heavy-duty) pickups, like F-250, that are aimed toward the toughest work and trailer-towing tasks. It’s likely that in the future, Ford will present a heavyweight electric or electrified alternative to those trucks.

This essentially serves as a last call for the F-150 diesel. Ford says that orders can be placed through July 16, with deliveries taking place through late this year. Yes, that’s this Friday.

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