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Old 09-21-2016, 06:29 PM   #1
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2017 f150 vs 250 towing vehicle

Trying to decide between a 2017 f150 and the f250 for towing a 30' airstream.. This is our first airstream and we are having to upgrade to a new truck because our old f150 can't tow the trailer. The new f150 has much better towing - but those of you who tow the 30' what would you choose?

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Old 09-21-2016, 06:50 PM   #2
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Are the final 2017 specs out?

IMHO a custom build 150 would be awesome, but builds seem to take a long time, not sure I have patience. I like the pics I've seen with the 250 super cab doors open and love that. Those may be more readily available.

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Old 09-21-2016, 07:07 PM   #3
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If you're looking for diesel, 4x4, etc, the 250 may be your best bet. Our'13 F150 handles the 30' '08 Classic, but if I had to do it all over, a diesel would be the better choice if only for the downhills....

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Old 09-21-2016, 07:09 PM   #4
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The F150 can tow it, but you'll be close to max. So if you want to bring your inlaws or a Harley, the F250 would be better.
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Old 09-21-2016, 08:29 PM   #5
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I towed my 30' for 2 years with a 2014 Toyota Tundra, 5.7L, 4x4, tow package etc., rated for a true 10,000 lbs towing capacity. Now it will certainly tow it, but you are working the engine on any uphill particularly mountain passes, mpg dropping down to 7, 8 or 9mpg, and on some mountain grades I had to be comfortable driving at 40-50mph, which didn't bother me, maybe the others around me, but I figured, hey, I am on vacation. Often I would have to downshift all the way to 3rd or even 2nd gear heading downhill.
Didn't feel real comfortable about stopping some times.
I recently upgraded to a 2016 F250 with a diesel, and what a difference. I can't imagine towing a 30 footer with a gas engine again, but most of our big trips are through the Western states, up and down the mountains. It really depends upon your expected usage - mountains or all flat, cross country or just a day from home?
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Old 09-21-2016, 08:58 PM   #6
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I have a 15 f150 and it pulls strong uphill and handles downhill fine. With that being said, I will get a 250 when I get to 90k miles. I would rather be overkill than right at capacity.
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Old 09-21-2016, 09:10 PM   #7
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I have already been thru this. Save yourself some aggravation and go for the F250 diesel. You will not have to look back.
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Old 09-22-2016, 11:08 AM   #8
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Go for the F250. when you are buying a new TV and have a choice, why would you want to buy one that will be maxed out or marginal. I feel that my Ram is approaching the upper load limits, a larger/longer trailer and I would need a 3/4 ton for improved capability and safety. Too many owners taking a risk, do not be one of them especially with a 30 foot trailer. Enjoy your new rig.
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Old 09-22-2016, 11:12 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by graysailor View Post
I have already been thru this. Save yourself some aggravation and go for the F250 diesel. You will not have to look back.
I've been thru this also. 250 diesel for all reasons listed above. Plus, if you have ever talked to anyone with the new aluminum 150 who has paid for body repair, you will understand the meaning of spending a lot of money , I haven't checked my USAA, but I bet coverage on the aluminum truck is extra $$$..
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Old 09-22-2016, 11:13 AM   #10
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I have gone from a 2000 3/4 ton Dodge diesel to a 2016 F 150 Super Cab with a 6.5-foot bed, the max tow and 3.5 Eco Boost and 3.55 locking rear.

The diesel motor is great but getting repairs on the road is a PITA. Newer diesels no matter who's brand have so much smog crap that if one thing goes wrong your truck top speed will drop to 10 mph.

I have a trusted mechanic that recommended that I stay away from the newer diesel engines because of this. He said if I purchased a new diesel to trade it in before the factory warranty went out.

My only complaint with my 2016 F-150 is that it hobby horses when you hit a big bump in the road. After doing some research on the F 150 forum this appears to be a common complaint that is solved with a set of Firestone Air Bags with 40 psi of air in them when towing. The 3.5 Eco Boost motor pulls like a freight train and with the tow/haul transmission it acts like a jake brake on a diesel truck when going down hill.

Pulling my 23FB I get about 13 mpg in the mountains of VA. I pulled my neighbor's 36-foot monster toy hauler from a camp site in VA Beach to his home when his diesel broke down and I got 10 mpg on mostly flat ground.

Anyhow that is my 0.02 worth.
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Old 09-22-2016, 11:20 AM   #11
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A F150 can handle it but will be very close to Max. Driving inclines in the western states will be at high RPMS and create stress on your vacation. Downhills will do the same. The F250 Powerstroke will just chug-la-lug up those hills at 15-1700 rpm and 65 mph. Staying awake is a bigger challenge than dealing with the high noise stress of a gasser turning at 5000 rpm. The Diesel engine brake minimizes need for extreme downshifting to keep speed in check.

Opt for easy. Not stressful driving. Worth the price.
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Old 09-22-2016, 11:24 AM   #12
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Kinda depends on where you are geographically.
I tow with a 1/2 ton, but live in flat land terrain.
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Old 09-22-2016, 11:36 AM   #13
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Sagle , Idaho
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I tow my 32 ft Excella with a 2007 Ford F250 Super Duty Diesel (5 speed manual) and I strongly recommend a 250 over a 150. I would not suggest a gas engine.
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Old 09-22-2016, 11:41 AM   #14
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Monument , Colorado
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I tow a 28 foot AS with a 2014 F150 FX4 Ecoboost set up for towing. It has a 36 gallon tank, a transmission cooler, the anti-sway sensor which will automatically counteract trailer sway, built-in brake controller, and it has the 3.55 rear axle. The Ecoboost engine will run on the 85 octane gas so you can buy the cheapest stuff you can find. With this set-up, the truck is rated to pull 11,500 pounds. The AS is about 7200 empty and 8200 pounds loaded.

I drive F150/AS around Colorado and the Rocky Mountain west with no problems at all. It pulls well uphill and I use the electronic shifter to reduce my gearing going down hill. I use a Blue Ox hitch with anti-sway and never have a problem. I do not have to deal with the diesel smog tests/requirements. I average about 10 mpg with the trailer in tow with both mountain and flat highway driving included in that number. The truck is my daily driver too, so I don't have an extra vehicle sitting around for towing.


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