2015 Ford F-150: Technology and Electronics First Look

A 2015 Ford F-150 Drivers II

By Aaron Bragman

The average pickup truck today has technology that the most expensive luxury cars didn't have just a decade ago. With each new generation, capabilities grow — and the 2015 Ford F-150 is no exception. Chockfull of optional electronic systems that do everything from making work easier to making play more fun, you can option up the new F-150 to extraordinary levels of tech. Some of it's useful, some of it's flashy, but most of it is pretty damn cool.

There are three things F-150 customers can't get enough of, according to Ford: lights, cameras and cupholders. The new F-150 has more of all of these; it will all be on display at the 2014 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, where the pickup is making its debut.

Let's start with the front of the truck. See all those little cameras everywhere? There's one right there under the big blue oval logo, and it's part of a new 360-degree camera system you operate from inside the cab. Push a dedicated button high up in the dash and the large touch-screen changes to a split view, showing the truck's surroundings. On the left is a panoramic view of the front of the truck, while on the right is an overhead bird's-eye view of the trucks' surroundings, helpful for all sorts of situations from maneuvering into a tight spot to figuring out where exactly that low tree stump is that you don't want to sideswipe on a narrow trail.

Push the button again and you get a panoramic view of the vehicle's front environment, a 180-degree angle that is useful for seeing oncoming traffic in tight urban situations. Shift into Reverse and a rearview camera helps you back up, but now features an LED spotlight in the tailgate's high-mounted spotlight to help with nighttime trailer hook-ups.

Below that button is the ubiquitous Ford Sync and MyFord Touch system, but as promised by Ford last year, this system has several redundant buttons and no touch-sensitive panels, a wise move on Ford's part. The new 2015 system boots up faster and is more responsive than in previous model years. It has been updated with new top-level command prompts that appear onscreen when Sync is activated, making for easier use. A new 8-inch LCD screen now is available on higher trim levels and is nestled between the round analog gauges directly in front of the driver. It has a number of new features, expanded apps, customizable display graphics and much better legibility than the much smaller old display.

With the arrival of all sorts of new sensors and the existing electric power steering for all models, the F-150 gains a number of enabled features like lane keep assist, automatic parallel parking and distance keeping cruise control. Blind spot warning has been brought to the F-150 too, and through a rather novel way. Instead of putting sensors in the rear bumper (which can be easily damaged in a working pickup) or in the tailgate or rear fenders, Ford decided that the easiest and cleanest way to install rear radar was to integrate it into the taillights. The system is optional on higher trim levels.

This is just a sampling of the new tech that has gone into the 2015 F-150. Ford seems to have taken its recent drubbing by Consumer Reports and other reviewing organizations to heart and boosted the technology levels in the new F-150 without making them overly complicated or difficult to use. Given that this is by far the company's most popular vehicle, that's a sound decision.

A 2015 Ford F-150 Centerstack 2 II

A 2015 Ford F-150 Int 2 II

 

Comments

@RichardJensen
No Ford did its homework, in order to stay competitive you are either a leader (trend setter) or a follower. In order to meet the new government café standards, new technologies and innovations are must. aluminum with the right alloys is a very strong and capable metal (must auto engines are made from aluminum alloys), best of all it never rust. As for the ecoboost technology, hell I thinks its great, lots of power from small displacement engines this is the future. Ram and GM will have to follow if they want to stay in the game.

@RJ, posting the exact same comment on every article made you look like a complete fool.

@ latwoods
Have you seen galvanic corrosion?

Have you seen intergranular corrosion?

Cylinder heads are a little different than thin high tensile aluminium panels. Cylinder heads also have a closed system for the coolant, which is used to prevent the cylinder head from corrosion.

Have you witnessed the effects of scratching and stress fractures in aluminium caused by intergranular corrosion?

I'm not saying aluminium is bad, as we have aluminium aircraft that have been around for 30 years.

You guys in the US even have relatively old aircraft of up to 25 years old flying around.

Rust is corrosion caused by the oxidisation of metal as it returns to its natural state.

All metals corrode.

Most metals when pure are most resistant to corrosion, even iron. The Eiffel Tower is made of pure iron, one of the reasons it's still around.

Pure aluminium isn't prone to rapid corrosion. But alloy it to magnesium to increase the aluminium's tensile strength and it will corrode quite rapidly.

I bet the F-150's operator's manual will give advice on how to maintain an aluminium vehicle.

2015 Ford F-150: Technology and Electronics First Look :

It´s funny how the author of this article hypes the electronics and the 360 degree cam .... this Features have been introduces by german automakers years ago...nothing new to mention, just standard

The F150 has a cherished reputation for customer satisfaction.

All the emphasis on connectivity and cameras is cool but it has a short shelf life market-wise, and it is the number one cause of poor showings in the quality surveys.

A perfectly installed system will still show up as a defect in the CR or JD Power surveys if the new car owner shows up at the dealer with a complaint about it.

GIJOE, if you really had a bloody clue, you'd realize all those things you listed are all Japanese innovations (specifically Nissan AVM:360), not even German. Germans do not invent everything, so I'd try not to always jump to that conclusion.

With all the technology, I'm surprised a HUD display isn't available.

Will Ford give a better warranty on their new pickup that will match what GM and Ram offer?

Looks like Ford put significantly more effort into this redesign than GM did with their trucks. A lot of exclusive options here, although I probably will pass on most of them. Too much stuff that can break on a working truck. As usual looks like they have a great interior.

I just hope they follow Toyota and make the backup cams standard on ALL models. No matter what 2014 Tundra you get, it will come with a backup cam. With the current F150, you need to buy an expensive package or upper trim to get one.

I'm undecided on this new Ford, but I can say one thing for sure: GM's 3 truck strategy is much better then sticking smaller, turbocharged engines in a fullsize truck to meet the new CAFE Standards. Current F150s are huge and many people could use a more full efficient, nimble smaller truck. I think GMs strategy is a winner, I think the Eco Diesel in the Ram is also a winner, I'm not as sure about Fords.

There is one thing not mentioned about the aluminum construction, and that is the fact there are not all that many body shop equipped to work on them, sure with Audi, BMW Jag. and Range Rover using alum. for some time now there are more body shops doing the work, but has anyone talked to their insurance agent yet on this? All in know it is very expensive to work on, but for them to save 700 lbs on a super crew? That is very cool. I do not like the new interior as much as the old one though. Ad far as the Tremor I mentioned the other day, I am going to wait and see if the dealer sells any of them, and see if I can get an even better deal.

Lots of nice technology here but still Sync, which means still Microsoft. I'm taking a 'wait and see' on this one. So far Sync and MFT aren't really creating a lot of positive buzz.



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