2015 Ford F-150 Repairs: Digging Deeper

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Editor's note: This post was updated on Jan. 30, 2015, to include additional information.

What happens when you take a sledgehammer to the rear quarter of the bed of a brand-new aluminum-bodied Ford F-150? Pretty much the same thing that happens to a "normal" pickup truck — it costs a boatload of money to fix.

According to USA Today, consumer advice website Edmunds.com intentionally damaged a 2015 F-150 to find out the cost of repairs. What the testers didn't do, according to Forbes.com, was compare the cost of repairing a similarly damage to a 2014 model of the same trim and configuration, so there's no way to make a direct comparison.

The concern, of course, is that the cost of a bed repair for an aluminum-bodied pickup will be much higher than a comparably damaged steel-bodied truck. On the surface this seems to make sense given that repair shops — both private and dealer shops — have invested tens of thousands of dollars to upgrade their service and paint departments, as well as pay for the required extra Ford certification for the new pickups. Some of the biggest news to come out of this exercise was that there could be a huge difference in hourly repair rates at some shops, in some cases varying by 100 percent ($60 an hour up to $120 an hour).

Another factor that added to the total repair costs was collateral damage done to a rear taillight, which required complete replacement. Since it was the Lariat trim package and equipped with the Blind Spot Information System (that is used for cross-traffic alert and park assist), the radar-equipped taillight added almost $1,000 to the bill, with the total adding up to just less than $3,000.

We took an unscientific survey of several Southern California repair shops — both private and Ford dealer service centers — and found a pretty wide spread between hourly body panel repair quotes. Naturally, total costs would depend on the extent of the damage, but hourly rates for steel bodies ranged from $45 an hour to $60 an hour, while aluminum rates were always more, especially at dealerships (the highest we found was $90 an hour). Some of the smaller shops told us they didn't distinguish between the two body materials. The bottom line here is that it might be too early to tell where aluminum F-150 repair costs will settle.

Ford representatives say that the front-end and cab of the new 2015 F-150 were completely redesigned and engineered to make access to damaged parts much easier (remember, many of the new modular pieces are connected with adhesives and rivets), making overall costs to replace those parts less expensive, and any impact damage to the back end of the rear-bed panel is probably less than 1 percent of all severe incidents.

Fluctuating hourly repair costs aside, FordParts.com provided a quick parts comparison list (see below) of some of the major body parts of a 2014 versus a 2015 Ford F-150. With the exception of the doors, pricing between the two models is pretty close.

Cars.com images by Mark Williams


Ford F-150 parts list


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Ford owners are never rearended. They must have always hit somebody.

$1000 for a single taillight? OMG! I'll stick with the old fashioned incandescent type, thank you!

Wow, so having a truck with blind spot monitoring and LEDs means a tailight costs $1000? No thanks...

Well, looks like 2015 F-150 owners are gonna have to drive more carefully and make sure they have decent paying jobs.

WOW pretty quick reaction for Mike Levine to feed this info to Mark......... that was OBVIOUSLY REALLY bad press!

So what is basically being said here is the local Ford Dealers may artificially raise their prices on aluminum to gouge buyers who are unaware........ real classy. Way to make folks feel comfy to come to the dealer.

Interesting point that all that extra cost means in 10 years you could fart on an f150 and total it..........

That hammer would have ripped through the high strength steel and probably end up in the bed. That aluminum was stout and impressive on its strength. You could go to a kids baseball game and take a foul ball and drive away without a dent to repair in the 2015. Also if you read the edmunds article the rear quarter for the 2015 cost the same as the 2014 steel panel new in the ford part catalog. It would have been cheaper to replace that panel vs fixing it.

All of you realize by now that somewhere, probably offshore, there's at least a half dozen sheet metal fab operations gearing up to produce generic STEEL replacement panels for the new F150, just like they do with other popular cars and trucks.

Steel. A fraction of the cost. Will sell like hotcakes.

I think there is a lot of miss-information out there on these aluminum trucks, Edmunds didn't help much by claiming double the hourly rate with their limited research and even worse, they claimed double the time to repair aluminum vs. steel, sure there might be a time increase but not double...

This article weighs the pro's and con's pretty well I think:

Perhaps a somewhat pro-Ford article, but I think those pro's should definitely be considered, such as aluminum not rusting, although it can corrode, but that happens much slower.

For now it also seems that the insurance companies haven't reacted, or possibly simply won't need to react as the F-150, for 2015, is still competitive insurance-rate wise.

Another great point is that Ford has been making their hoods out of aluminum since 1997, 1997! They already have some experience and data about what it takes to make repairs.

Its really wild how long aluminum has been around and all the cars and big trucks and planes its been used in and now Ford uses it and its Katie bar the door. I was talking to a friend of mine who works for a body shop and he just laughed it off. Said he had worked on aluminum for years. He also said he was very impressed at the way the truck absorbed the hammer. He also stated that type of damage done by that sledge hammer was hard to fix. He said steel would have not taken those blows and would have been harder to fix. Could warrant bed replacement. Aluminum is the future.

Hmm cost of Aluminum repair and turbos just to name a few.

Why would anyone in their right mind own one of these?

-No better mileage than anything else in the real world.

-Less Warranty

-More Cost for purchase

-Carbon Buildup

-Turbo replacement is inevitable within 10 years

Ford's BS marketing is all that sells these things!

I told you before!
I priced the insurance increase of $90 for 6 months compared to my 2013 F-150.
Also they never took into the account the personality of the customer entering a body shop where with my good looks and charm I am confident I could get a better price.
Believe me! I can have an uneducated body shop technician end up talking to himself.

Anything but an Ecoboost, let me make some counter-points.

Mileage, yes, it's roughly equal, with engines HALF the size.

Warranty, don't have time to research this one.

More cost? Try buying an EcoDiesel.

Carbon Buildup? No Rust buildup though, try that with your steel truck.

Turbo replacement? Cylinder deactivation failure.

Finally, I do believe Ford marketed these very intelligently.

The 2.7 offers better and mostly equal performance to a 5.7 hemi while getting mpg's by 6+ mpg's over a 5.7 hemi. Even the 3.5 ecoboost gets better mpg's while offer way better performance then the hemi..... Your fuel savings will easily make up the cost difference in repairs if any should arise on the ford.


If the engines are half the size shouldn't they be getting better mileage?

Warranty is 40k miles less for the powertrain compared to Ram and GM.

More cost? A diesel in a 1500 doesn't make any sense with fuel prices. So bad example. Buy a V-8 and drive it with only needing to do oil changes.

Cylinder Deactivation failure?? Post some proof of this. Do you even know how cylinder deactivation works?? Pretty simple actually.

A turbo v-6 with overhead cams and a mile long timing chain has a much greater failure rate.

Rust buildup?? How about corrosion on the Aluminum??

All of Ford's marketing is BS so if you believe it you're falling into their plan and from reading your comments you're the prime example.


Where do you come up with 6 mpg's better??

Real world? Definatley not

Towing? Big NO

How about both that are 4 wheel drive?? Nope

4x4 GM 5.3 is rated at 22 highway where the 4x4 2.7 ecobust is rated at 23 mpg highway. Hmm 1 mpg?? When towing the 2.7 does much worse.

Or take the GM 6.2 vs the 3.5 EB, the 6.2 gets better mileage and has better performance.

Don't make up stuff when you have no idea what you're talking about.

At ecoburst.... Look at this website in the special reports section of there 2 most recent test that are real world data and cross reference between the annual physical and v8 challenge. I will provide links to each and then go through each article to se results.... The v6 fords weren't allowed to compete in the v8 challenge so you have to bounce back and forth between articles and compare. 3.5 ecoboost gets better mpg's then the 6.2 towing. The 5.3 isn't listed but it's not even close in performance to the 2.7 to be considered competition to the 2.7. The 5.7 hemi is what is in competition with the 2.7as there performance is almost identical and we all know the 5.3 is no comparison to the hemi.

Anyways here is the links to real world testing on here as it seems you haven't read them.


So for everyone this is a summation of what Edmunds did.

There was a lot of interesting stuff that was left out of this summation.

1. It took the impacts and held up very well.
2. The rear taillight alone cost $880ish (LEDs and HIHs aint cheap).
3. It took almost twice a long as steel to repair (7 days as opposed to 4).
4. Repairs were done at a Ford Dealer and a "Clean" room is required to do aluminum bodywork.
5. The total cost billed from the dealer to the insurance was a whopping 4 times what a steel repair would have been. When the guys at Edmunds said they would be paying out of pocket it was only $500 (about 25%) more than a comparable steel repair (anyone know how to say insurance fraud?).
6 ALL body work especially form the dealer and on an aluminum body is expensive.
7, As time goes by it will get cheaper (never as cheap as steel but cheaper).
8. If insurance companies do get gouged like that its gonna lead to noticeably higher premiums.

So is it worth the trade off for an extra MPG, class leading payload, class leading towing, better braking, better handling and never rusting and being a technological pioneer in materials and manufacturing that will become more common and necessary?

Its still too soon to know and only time will tell.

Goes to show that it pays to shop around.

The huge flaw in the test was the fact that they did not do the same thing to a 2014 steel skinned F150.

In any test you need a "control".

@Tom#.3 - ever stop to think that the price increase you cited was inflationary? Just like the sledge hammer test, what was the increase on a 2014?

The internet is a vast wasteland of disinformation.

Thank you Tom .3 and Edmunds for proving my point.

Scott the koolaide drinker, keep it going bro!!

The 2.7 isn't getting even close to the mileage that is advertised. And don't even think about towing mileage.

Actually the 5.3L and 2.7 EcoBoom are very similar in performance. And the 5.3 actually gets decent mileage towing, unlike the 2.7L.

In the real world the 5.3 is getting better mileage and doesn't have fake engine noises to compensate for the rice burner mosquito sound. That's embarassing!!

Good point lee.

another thing to note is a small portion of you insurance policy is for collision that you cause and the repairs need for your vehicle if you are at fault. If somebody else causes it there insurance pays unless they don't have any and that is what the uninsured portion of you policy is for.

If you have to ask how much it cost then you cannot afford to buy it. Something on the lines of what J P Morgan said about yachts if you have to ask about the price then you cannot afford to buy one. Since large full optioned pickups are today's land yachts then this analogy holds true. If you can afford a 2015 F-150 then you can afford the insurance. The question is the rest of us that are driving more affordable options have our insurance rates raised to cover the additional cost to repair the aluminum F-150. Isn't sharing the risk great--kind of like socialism.

Aside from the aluminum cost issues, recent PUTC towing tests show the 2.7L EB got 9mpg while the 3.5L EB got 11mpg. Ford's EB wet dream continues.

Only an EB koolaid drinker could see an EB as fuel efficient.

Hey Ken
What did the rest of the V8's get for mileage and towing compared to the the ecoboost brothers????

3 .5L EcoBoost got 11.1 mpg towing and the 2.7L got 9.8 mpg while the Chevy V8 got 10.2, GMC got 10, Hemi Ram got 9.7 and Toyota 5.7 got 9.1 towing in recent tests.

@papa jim--I am sure the insurance companies will make their repair estimate on those steel parts stamped in China as the replacement part. You will have to pay out of pocket to get the OEM aluminium part which most will pay for and honestly if I had a 2015 F-150 I would pay the additional amount to get the better part. I have had to pay extra to get decent parts as well since some of the knock off parts don't fit as well. Sometimes there is not much difference in the knock off part but many times you get what you pay for.

I have extra insurance that covers the cost of OEM versus "jobber" parts or even used panels. It isn't that much more and is worth it.

@Lou BC--Agree. My past experience most of the time your are better off with OEM parts. I have taken the knock off Chinese parts before and sometimes you can get by with it but many times you will regret it. Since I keep my vehicles 10 plus years I would rather get the OEM.

the best part of everyone's comments are the comparison between the eco diesel, a v-8 Silverado and a v-6. lmao. you cant compare a diesel to a gas engine! ever. and the fact is that most vehicles have HID lighting, go and price them all out. audi, Mercedes, dodge and gm!

I wouldn't buy Ford anyway so don't really care what's it made off,still you want to impress me make it out of plastic like this

Henry Fords car made of hemp plastic

Lotus Elise body made from hemp

Here are the numbers of the 2015 Ford F150 3.5 Ecoboost versus the winner of the Light Duty V8 Winner, Chevrolet Silverado 1500 6.2.

People go with the brands they like, I like the 6.2 in the GM Twins, compared to Ford's defunct, failed 6.2 it offers amazing FE and power.

2015 GM 6.2 15/21 Look it up on the EPA's website.
2014 Ford 6.2 12/16

This is why Ford doesn't offer the 6.2 in the redesign, even with the weight loss, don't let Mike Levine or any Ford "engineer" tell you otherwise its all there in black in white.

Ford 6.2=Major Failure, Embarrassment, Hemi and GM making real V8's, Ford pushing Turdblows and forcing the Ford Lemmings to defend their fake, vroom, vroom sounds coming over achy breaky heart sound tracks.

So I will take my corvette engine noises and not R2D2 pumped in fake Ford Elevator Music Thank You Very Much.

The fact that Ford dropped the 6.2 is an admission that Ford cant compete with GM on powertrain engineering.

Just like Ford cant compete against Duramax, which is the same motor as 2011, yet Ford brings out a redesigned in house Diesel and gets crushed, then redesigns it again to squeeze more power out of it and it still gets owned by Duramax esp in FE, how embarrassing can it get for Ford Powertrain Engineers, worst warranty in class, terrible trailering/hauling FE in the 2.7, being sued for all the Ecojoke problems, being investigated for Super Duty Powertrain problems by the NTSB, PUTU.com ignoring the SD problems, even affect its executive editor's personal truck!

Chevrolet 54310
Gears 3.23
Weight 5620

0-60 5.92
0-60 loaded 7.09 1240 pounds
1/4 14.34
1/4 loaded 15.36 1240 pounds
Unloaded Chevy 6.2 19.8 MPG
Braking 60-0 133.7 unloaded
Trailering Chevy 6.2 10.2 MPG 6,700 pounds
Braking 60-0 132.2 loaded with 1240 pounds
Davis Dam 19.92 6,700-pound trailer

Ford F150 60880
Gears 3.55
Weight 5560

0-60 6.22
0-60 loaded 7.02 1080 pounds
1/4 14.84
1/4 15.50 loaded 1080 pounds
Unloaded 3.5 Eco boost 18.5
Braking 60-0 133.6 unloaded
Trailering 3.5 Ecoboost 11.1 6,800-pounds
Braking 60-0 135.3 with 1080 pounds
Davis Dam 20.76 6,800-pound trailer

similar to GM's ign. investigation! your very quick to point out fords flaws. but the fact is. they didn't need a bail out. And FoMoCo doesn't say oh hey you can only have one key on your ign. key. The reason that gm and dodge offer a longer warranty probably has something to do with the fact that they are in the shop more and they are trying to protect there custs from a lot of expense. but don't ask there warranty or engineer's there are in black and white!

This is EXACTLY what I kept saying.... and everybody was like "no no no... it won't be too bad... blah blah blah."

Yet another reason to avoid the F-150. Insurance costs are going to skyrocket on this POS.

@ anything but an eco bust

I have two trucks for work as I do farming for a living. One is a 3/4 ton ram cummins and the only reason it's a ram is due to the awesome power the cummins puts out. The other truck is a 2011 ecoboost. I now have 178,000 Kms on this truck and no issues with turbo's. I tow more with that truck in two weeks than you would tow with your ram (guessing that's what you have) in a year. I constantly tow a horse trailer wit two horses in it on 800 km trips and I'm not easy on this truck going down the highway. I have my cummins for the big jobs like pulling 15,000 lb trailers.

My 2011 Silverado has had nothing but oil changes and tires, same thing for my next door neighbor's, our other neighbor had to go to Lemon Law Lawyer against Ford over his 2011 Ecoboost.

Ford lovers bring up bailout even when Ford took Government Money as well just not as bailout funds look it up, so old, how long will you bring it up? Stick to the topic, Pickup Trucks and Powertrains.

Ford has no midsize truck, GM does.

Anyone that thinks Ecojokes and Powerstrokers will outlast GM Small Blocks and Duramax prove that Ford Lemmings is a mental disease and need treatment.


People are going to say want they want to and obviously defend the purchase they have made...common sense! The true hard facts when comparing the 5.3 gm, 5.7 hemi and 3.5 ecoboost, the ecoboost will win every competition every time. Argue all you want, the new f150 3.5 EB has more payload, can tow more, faster 0-60 and quarter mile. As for aluminum, GM will make the switch soon and once Ford comes out with their ten speed tranny and diesel option in 2017, the F150 will be the first truck to post 30+ Mpgs combined city/highway. Once this happens, bye bye hemi and steel on the ram!

Even the Ford owners are embarrassed and are asking for a could have had a v8 ringtone to replace the fake speed racer real Chevrolet v8 sounds ford used for the ecosmokes haha.


So let me see if I got this. Ford wants me to pay more for an aluminum trucks with a V6 that gets no better gas mileage than a V8 and weighs about the same as the rest of the 1/2 tons. Pay more for insurance and repairs and have fake V8 noise piped in so I won't miss my V8?

Not only no, but HELL NO!

Ford could not compete with G.M and Chrysler V8's in power and MPG. So they had to go with lighter body and power train to equal it's cross town rivals.

Lets keep in mind the Hemi V8 is the only Iron block in the group. No D.I. Their is still plenty Ram can do to upgrade it and lighten it. Ram also has the best 1/2 ton MPG by a country mile. So that means Cafe credit's.

The AVERAGE gas mileage of the 5.7 Hemi is 19.2
The AVERAGE gas mileage of the 2.7 EB is 17.5

The reason the smaller V6 is lower is because its underpowered to match a heavy truck so you're forced to floor it everywhere you go.
The turbo is a quick fix, an artificial add on to increase performance but its still a small V6 that belongs in a car.

Makes me laugh how you guys defend the F-150 no matter what changes they make to it like YOU know, like you're an expert. Makes me wonder if they made the F-150 from recycled cardboard the same guys would say cardboard is better than steel !

You F-150 experts forget back in 2009 when they matched the 5.4 V8 to the new 6 speed transmission it was getting 17 to 19 MPG WITHOUT a turbo!
Then in 2011 Ford LIED to you saying the 3.5 EB would get BETTER gas mileage!
The 2011 was getting 15-16 MPG

Ford would have been better off keeping the 5.4 V8 and adding VVT and DI and engine deactivation.
The 5.4 was a great engine !

Got to hand it to Chevy and Ram staying with their reliable V8's where they can tweek and improve them every following year to increase gas mileage!

Bad move for Ford! What the consumer saves in fuel which is not much, they will be paying out more then they save for their insurance and the extra cost for their loaded pickup.

@Mr. Obvious,
I thought Ford stopped doing that after they got caught with their pants down with the new Mustang and fake noises debacle? Somebody has pulled a radio fuse out on new Mustang and that's how it was uncovered that they're pumping fake V8 noise into a cabin. They contacted Ford about it and Ford had no choice to admit to it.
That's really sad to be honest with you that Ford resorts to such gimmicks.

Back to this article. People were so blind about this aluminum truck. I'm an electrical project manager. I price out, quote and design projects from ground up. There are instances where I would prefer to use aluminum, mostly to save some weight, but I can't because it costs 3x more than steel equivalent. I'm sure Ford has some pretty volume discount going on there but I doubt they can come even close to steel prices. We also have to keep in mind that steel industry isn't sitting on their butts and not doing anything about it. At some point, maybe they already have, they will lower their prices to put even more pressure on aluminum industry and Ford. Light weight steel is another option they have and will pour resources into it.
I'm all for trying new ideas. That's how we progressed to where we are today, but I think Ford picked a wrong vehicle to do so. Their bread and butter is under spot light and it's not doing so well. Although, I'll give this country a credit for being very forgiving and that's what will help Ford pull through maybe. Time will tell. I'm not rooting against them, I can tell you that.

"Only an EB koolaid drinker could see an EB as fuel efficient."

Why is it that all of the compaints about Ecoboost engines come from people that don't own one? I own one, so far I love it and I am getting excellent fuel economy both empty and towing. I plan to buy a second one as soon as the max payload package is available on the 2015 models. I am sure that the Chevy's and Ram's are good trucks but I really want the max payload package.

The Edmunds article is really invalid without a comparison. Personally I would rather have seen a 2015 Silverado or Ram since those are the alternatives at this point. Don't forget that Silverado is going aluminum in a few years so all of the aluminum haters that are GM fans better hold their tongues. Since the only sheet metal repair I have had in the last 30 years was a front fender damaged by a suicidal deer I am not worried about the cost impact repair. I will be glad to not have rust issues anymore.

Lee goes around drag racing people in his Ecobust to make up for a lack in other departments, what a Douche Tool.

I would say GM's 5.3L motor holds its own against Ford's 3.5 Ecoboost.
Here is some numbers from PUTCs Light Duty Challenge

Observed mpg (empty)
5.3 V8 - 23.1
3.5 V6 - 22.3

Observed mpg (towing)
5.3 V8 - 12.5
3.5 V6 - 10.9

0-60 (empty)
5.3 V8 - 7.9
3.5 V6 - 7.1

0-60 (load)
5.3 V8 - 8.7
3.5 V6 - 8.3

0-60 (towing)
5.3 V8 - 18.1
3.5 V6 - 17.0

60-0 breaking (empty)
5.3 V8 - 137
3.5 V6 - 132

60-0 breaking (load)
5.3 V8 - 143
3.5 V6 - 145

Hill climb 0-60 (empty)
5.3 V8 - 9.4
3.5 V6 - 8.5

Hill climb 0-40 (towing)
5.3 V8 - 16.4
3.5 V6 - 12.6

Autocross (empty)
5.3 V8 - 46.3
3.5 V6 - 49.0

Autocross (load)
5.3 V8 - 49.7
3.5 V6 - 48.5

This is GM's mid offering against Ford's top dog. 5.3L V8 returned not bad at all numbers if you ask me, being more fuel efficient at the same time. V8 more fuel efficient than V6, who would have guessed!
Keep in mind GM still has the awesome 6.2L in the stable. Which should really be compared against the 3.5 Ecoboost.

GM really stepped up this game and has better engines than Ford.
And it's V8. Not fake noises. Win win .
I would consider GM, If there is no RAM.
It's time for RAM to unleash the Kraken.
Exciting times for new trucks technology, not for new trucks pricing.

@gregory J

Those are number from the old steel body ecoboost that you posted. You need to go to the annual physical special report to see the numbers for the 15..... If you do you will see that the ecoboost has pick up over a second in 0-60, performed better in braking and hauling. All with out a power bump and still using the old 6 speed. 10 speed and 450 hp coming up next year. You will also see that the 2.7 performed better then the 5.3 if you cross reference results between special reports.

Updated post.
Ford is hard at work on damage control.

Yes, these are old numbers. That's the only head to head comparo available. Annual physical included V6s only and V8 challenge did not include 5.3L V8 from GM. So there is no direct comparison between these two engines. So what's your point? It's OK for you to take Fords '15 numbers and compare them against GMs '13 numbers? You haven't seen '15 5.3L performance figures, so where you're going with this?
Don't forget GM and Ford are working on 10 speed together. When is ready, it'll be available for both.
450HP? Nobody else can bump HP figures?
Old 6-speed? What's the excuse there?

Gregory, GM has made no changes to the 2015 5.3L, so it is perfectly fine to use the Ford 2015 numbers seeing as the GM 5.3L is equipped the same in 2015 as it was in 2013. Also note in you own comparison data, the 3.5L Ecoboost stomped on the 5.3L when loaded up. Add more weight and watch those numbers get even further apart.

Not sure who posted it, but I hope they realize that the GM 6.2L is not the same set up as last year. This year they put an 8 speed tranny with it which is largely responsible for the mpg increase. IIRC Ford had the best gasser mpg in the HD Hurt Locker tests with the "outdated" 6.2L when they both ran 6 speed transmissions. Heck, the 5.0L held it's own against the 2015 GM 6.2L. That is one huge reason Ford figured to eliminate it as a low volume engine in the F150. Wasn't worth the added production cost to engineer the 2015 F150 to accomodate it.

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