2019 Ford F-250 Super Duty Real-World MPG: Better Than You'd Think

2019 Ford F-250 Super Duty MPG
Cars.com illustration by Paul Dolan

By Aaron Bragman

Quick, go look up fuel economy ratings for the 2019 Ford F-250 Super Duty 6.2-liter V-8 at the EPA's Fueleconomy.gov. Ha, you can't! Just like every other heavy-duty pickup, it's not there. Vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating exceeding 8,500 pounds don't need to report fuel economy numbers.

Related: What's the Best 3/4-Ton Work Truck for 2017?

So how are you to know what kind of mileage that shiny new behemoth gets before you plunk down your cash on one? We recently spent time with the 2019 Ford F-250 Super Duty before Ford rolls out the updated 2020 Super Duty this fall, and wondered ourselves just what kind of mileage it gets — so we logged a couple hundred miles finding out.

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The F-250 We Tested

The truck we sampled was a F-250 XL with a 176-inch-long wheelbase, 8-foot-long bed, crew cab and rear-wheel drive. It had the standard 385-horsepower, 6.2-liter V-8 engine making 430 pounds-feet of torque and a six-speed automatic transmission. This F-250 tipped the scales at an as-tested 6,480 pounds with a full tank of fuel and nobody on board. That's a work truck, pure and simple, with vinyl bench seating for six, vinyl flooring instead of carpeting and steel wheels instead of alloys.

This F-250 featured the Power Equipment Group, so power windows instead of manual cranks (thank God) along with the optional tailgate step, a spray-in bedliner, cruise control, an AM/FM stereo with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, the gooseneck and fifth-wheel prep kits, telescoping trailer tow mirrors, surround view and trailering camera system, the Sync3 multimedia system and a blind spot warning system. Everything you need for a work truck, nothing you don't (except perhaps a rear-window defroster, which I'm amazed isn't standard). This F-250 stickered for the surprisingly low price of $44,310 including destination.

The MPG Run

My test loop for fuel economy in southeast Michigan is a 200-mile run that's 25 percent city driving and 75 percent highway. The first portion is a stop-and-go, lower speed urban and suburban environment, while the second, longer portion is at highway speeds. Neither feature much elevation change (this is the Midwest). The truck was empty aside from myself, no payload or trailer — making this a best-case scenario for fuel economy. Weather was perfect: 72 degrees and sunny with very light winds. Speeds were kept to no more than 5 mph over the speed limit, always.

The F-250 performed surprisingly well. After the city portion, the on-board computer reported 14.6 mpg in stop-and-go traffic. Continuing onto the highway, the computer read an average of 15.5 mpg after 200 miles. My own calculations determined that to be actually a hair low — filling up the truck's massive 48-gallon tank took just 12.75 gallons, bringing the F-250's observed fuel economy to 15.7 mpg of combined mileage. At that rate, the F-250 I drove would have a staggering total range of around 750 miles, empty.

F-250 MPG Vs. the Rest

This compares favorably to the most recent results we have for the F-250's field of competitors, our 2017 3/4-Ton Work Truck Challenge. The Ford F-250 Super Duty won that Challenge aided by a 16.0 mpg average measured fuel consumption on our test loop in a smaller regular-cab model. Considering the bigger 2019 model I tested was able to score so similarly, despite weighing 500 pounds more than the regular-cab model, is truly impressive. And these results are unlikely to change much for the refreshed 2020. The base powertrain for the 2020 model will not change from the 2019, but a new 7.3-liter V-8 and revised turbo-diesel 6.7-liter Power Stroke are being offered for 2020. Both the 6.2-liter gasoline V-8 and six-speed automatic transmission tested here will carry on unaltered.

Of course, your mileage will most certainly vary. Add more people, add some payload or hitch up a gooseneck trailer, and fuel economy will certainly drop. Drive a little faster or slower, be harder on the accelerator or later on the brake, and you'll also see a different result. In the coming months, we plan to test more of the latest crop of heavy-duty pickups to start building up a good baseline for fuel economy, so stay tuned.

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