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Old 05-28-2019, 01:22 PM   #1
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Ford aluminum pick ups

I currently tow a 2018 FC 28 foot (6600 pounds loaded) with my 2011 Ford F150, 5.0 liter engine and tow package. It does okay or better but I am looking to upgrade to a newer F150 but am a bit concerned about the overall lighter weight truck for towing. The aluminum bodies shave about 700 pounds dropping the tow vehicle weight to around 4900 pounds. My theory has always been that a heavier (and longer wheelbase) tow vehicle offers more stability and safety for towing.
Anyone have experience going with the newer F150 PU with the aluminum body verses the steel bodies? Thanks in advance for any comments.
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Old 05-28-2019, 01:56 PM   #2
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One huge plus with the aluminum body is that it increases your payload by about that 700 lbs. all other things being equal.
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Old 05-28-2019, 02:54 PM   #3
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Towed with Both

Hi there. First hand experience here. Towed our 30' International Serenity with a 2012 F-150 Lariat (Crew Cab 6 1/2' box 3.5 l ecoboost) which was a steel body. Then towed with a 2016 F-150 Lariat (Crew Cab 6 1/2' box 3.5 l ecoboost). Must say we didn't notice any difference in towing at all.

However there is a small difference just driving the vehicle as a daily driver. Living in Saskatchewan we have many gravel and/or bumpy roads. We found the 2016 bounced around a bit more on loose gravel or bumpy roads when the trailer wasn't with us.

The unfortunate thing was we didn't notice a significant difference in gas mileage between the two.
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Old 05-28-2019, 10:58 PM   #4
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Not quite what you're asking for, but I have one of the first aluminum F-250s and have been happy with it. I got the extended cab and 8' bed, so it has the advantage of wheelbase.
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Old 05-28-2019, 11:53 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kamadeca View Post
Hi there. First hand experience here. Towed our 30' International Serenity with a 2012 F-150 Lariat (Crew Cab 6 1/2' box 3.5 l ecoboost) which was a steel body. Then towed with a 2016 F-150 Lariat (Crew Cab 6 1/2' box 3.5 l ecoboost). Must say we didn't notice any difference in towing at all.

However there is a small difference just driving the vehicle as a daily driver. Living in Saskatchewan we have many gravel and/or bumpy roads. We found the 2016 bounced around a bit more on loose gravel or bumpy roads when the trailer wasn't with us.

The unfortunate thing was we didn't notice a significant difference in gas mileage between the two.
I think the switch (for the '17 model year) to dual-mode injection and the 10-speed transmission made more of an MPG difference than the steel-to-aluminum transition, at least for the Max Tow setup. It may be that a low-numeric ratio Gen1 Ecoboost in an aluminum truck would do noticeably better than the Gen1 Ecoboost in a steel one. The Gen2 10-speed averaging a bit over 11 mpg pulling a 26U at about 68 mph is a decent outcome for me.
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Old 05-29-2019, 05:07 AM   #6
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I had a '15 F150 3.5 ecoboost, aluminum, and towed a 25 foot flying cloud.....no problems whatsoever. That 3.5 is a beast.


Now tow a 30 footer with a '17 F250 gasser and it's a real nice setup.....3,110 pounds payload!
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Old 05-29-2019, 05:33 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by montgomg View Post
I currently tow a 2018 FC 28 foot (6600 pounds loaded) with my 2011 Ford F150, 5.0 liter engine and tow package. It does okay or better but I am looking to upgrade to a newer F150 but am a bit concerned about the overall lighter weight truck for towing. The aluminum bodies shave about 700 pounds dropping the tow vehicle weight to around 4900 pounds. My theory has always been that a heavier (and longer wheelbase) tow vehicle offers more stability and safety for towing.
Anyone have experience going with the newer F150 PU with the aluminum body verses the steel bodies? Thanks in advance for any comments.
Most of that 700# came from the cab and frame. Steel boxes are lighter than you think. Mine is around 300#.
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Old 05-29-2019, 10:07 AM   #8
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To majorairhead Thanks for the reply.
Do you know the weight of your current tow vehicle and what sort of fuel mileage do you get with your current setup?
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Old 05-29-2019, 04:41 PM   #9
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I drive 25’ Intl and according to truck’s program display, I’m getting 12.6 miles to gallon which makes having the 37-gallon gas tank a real blessing.
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Old 05-29-2019, 08:13 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by montgomg View Post
To majorairhead Thanks for the reply.
Do you know the weight of your current tow vehicle and what sort of fuel mileage do you get with your current setup?
I don't know the weight of our truck off hand, but likely in the neighborhood of 6,500 pounds or so. It's a 2017 F250 crew cab, XLT, 6.2 gas.

Towing our 2019 International Serenity I get 9.5 mpg on average. Depending on terrain, some times 10, some times 9.

Not towing, winter gas gives me around 12.5 mpg. Summer gas gives me around 14.5 mpg.

Equalizer hitch set up, no issues at all, tows rock solid.
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Old 05-30-2019, 05:56 AM   #11
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I drive a 2016 F-150 with the 3.5 liter Ecoboost and aluminum body, pulling a 25-foot AS, over 25,000 miles so far and no problems. Pulls rock solid, although both TV and trailer get pulled and push a little sometimes by 18 wheelers. I get on average about 11.5 mpg, depending on the terrain.
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Old 05-30-2019, 06:57 AM   #12
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Ford F150 switch

I used to pull our 2018 FC27 with a 2011 F150 V8. Recently made the switch to to 2018 F150 Powerstroke Diesel. All around better in every way. No issues with lighter aluminum weight.

Averaged 11-11.5 MPG with the old F150 -- the new F150 averaged 16 MPG on our recent 1800 mile outing a couple weeks ago.
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Old 05-30-2019, 07:22 AM   #13
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the new F150 averaged 16 MPG on our recent 1800 mile outing a couple weeks ago.
I could really get used to that. (Iím assuming that mpg is pulling your AS?) Iíll have to do a little calculation to see how many miles Iíd have to drive to justify the cost of swapping vehicles. I doubt theyíll be taking $6,000 off of list price in Sept though.
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Old 05-30-2019, 09:20 PM   #14
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Our tow vehicle is a 2015 F-150 Lariat SuperCrew FX4 3.5 EcoBoost with 3.55 gears. Traveled just this weekend with a 6,300 pound 27' AirStream GT and 1,100 pounds of cargo split between the truck and trailer, from Cypress Texas to Arlington Texas. Total trip was 470 miles. On the way up had a 15 mph tailwind and averaged 14.5 mpg. On the way back had a 15 mph headwind and averaged 11.7. Total trip averaged 13.1 mpg. My speed was 60'ish roundtrip. Past trips have been around 12.5 mpg. I am very satisfied with these numbers.
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Old 05-31-2019, 06:32 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GettinAway View Post
I could really get used to that. (Iím assuming that mpg is pulling your AS?) Iíll have to do a little calculation to see how many miles Iíd have to drive to justify the cost of swapping vehicles. I doubt theyíll be taking $6,000 off of list price in Sept though.
Yes, that was pulling the AS, on flat to small rolling hill terrain. Surprised to see that high of MPG, but that was what the trip data stated. I'll continue to monitor over next few trips to see if it changes. My original F150 was getting up there in mileage, and when I found a new 2018 still on the lot, I was able to get a decent deal on it. Never owned a diesel truck before but have to admit I am impressed by it. I know diesels are popular in F250s and above, but this smaller turbo diesel in the F150 pulls far better than my old 2011 V8 F150.
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Old 06-05-2019, 10:44 AM   #16
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Hi

We've been pulling a 30' with an "aluminum" F-250 for a couple years now. No problems / complaints at all. If you want your "700 pounds" back, go with a diesel / 4WD version There are a lot of options that add weight to a truck.

Bob
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Old 06-05-2019, 11:48 AM   #17
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I recently switched

I recently switched from a 2014 Ram 1500 to a 2018 F150 4x4 with Max payload at Max towing packages. Iím towing a 2016 27fb International. Iíve got about 5000 miles with a trailer behind me and hereís my observations.

The Cat scales tell me that Iím right at the limit on my rear axle and within 100 pounds of limit on my front axle. Thatís with the trailer loaded for a two week trip with four passengers and the generator plus inflatable kayak.

I average 11 miles per gallon at 75 miles an hour when itís level but my gas mileage drops to 7 ish when Iím driving in the mountains. In California Iím only going 55-60 miles an hour and my gas mileage goes up to 12 1/2. With a 10 speed transmission, power is always where I need it. Iíve even done a 9% grade and had to let up. My last truck was better downhill, the Ford canít hold me back. Iím always applying more break. I borrowed a friends 2018 Nissan Titan HD on a quick trip, it was more stable than the Ford. It was better downhill to but gas mileage was horrible it has a small tank and I hate getting gas with the trailer.

Hope that helps.
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Old 06-05-2019, 12:46 PM   #18
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Aluminum body Ford Pickups and towing

I have a 2015 Ford F-150 supercrew 2WD with the 2.7 L eco-boost engine. The truck is rated for 7000 pounds towing as I have it configured. I tow a small boat and a small airstream 2007 Basecamp. I get over 25 MPG daily and around 18 when towing. The 36 gallon gas tank gives me incredible range. The 3.5L eco-boost motor allows you to configure up to almost 14,000 pounds for towing with the max tow package.

I love this truck!
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Old 06-05-2019, 01:31 PM   #19
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2018 F150 Lariat 4x4 6 cylinder is terrific

We bought the 2018 F150 Lariat with the full 2nd row and short bed. Full tow package. 4x4. 6 cyl turbocharged with 10 gears. Towing our 2008 27 FB Classic rated at 9,000 lb max gross. The truck is rated right at 18000 lb towing... Iím guessing our trailer loaded is 8,000. Towing performance is flawless. Tow mode features are great. Super ride... surprising. Highway mpg is about 18.5, drops to 9 or 10 towing. We god the 35 gal tank with the tow package which I think is mandatory.
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Old 06-05-2019, 02:40 PM   #20
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I'm extremely happy with my 2018 F-150, 4x2, V8, 10-speed transmission. I had to order it to get this combination. Our 27' FB FC weighs in at 6,300 lbs loaded for months on the road. The truck's payload is a problem as it is with all 1/2 ton trucks, but I've never been over the GAWR or GVWR, close but not over. Our B-Pillar sticker says max payload is 1,710.

Uphill acceleration isn't as good as the V6 EcoBoost, but downhill braking is excellent. That's the reason for the V8 choice. I also didn't want all that rotating machinery that has to spin up to generate the power of the EcoBoost. The V8 is a naturally aspirated, fuel injection engine.

I also ordered the 36-gallon fuel tank. With that, I have an over 500-mile range when towing, here in the East. Fuel economy towing is right around 13 mpg, and not towing I get 20+.

There is a YouTube video from Fast Lane Truck where they compared two F-150s one with V8 and the other with V6 EcoBoost towing a 9,000 lb trailer over the Ike Gauntlet. The V8 beat the V6 in every category except for uphill acceleration. I can attest to that.

Randy
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