What You Get in a $75,000 Ford F-150 Limited, and What Else to Consider

2019 Ford F-150 Limited Exterior

Cars.com photos by G.R. Whale

By G.R. Whale

Many luxury-trim pickup trucks come with truly mind-boggling prices, and the 2019 Ford F-150 Limited is at the pinnacle, nearly breaking the $75,000 barrier without accessories; the F-150 I just drove posted a $74,120 retail price (all prices include a destination fee). This is a pickup you buy on desire rather than need, so we're looking at the Limited and considering alternatives in both self-indulgent pickups and some options you normally might not think about.

Related: Ford Puts Raptor Engine in 2019 F-150 Limited

I've yet to see a new F-150 Limited with anything more than a mountain bike in the bed, so yes, I did toss a couple of things in the back but nothing that wouldn't fit in my regular car's trunk, including my bike. Then I hit the road, ranging from interstate to meandering single lanes to no pavement at all, from idle in low-range 1st gear to wide-open acceleration, across a 41-degree temperature spread and a mile or so in elevation change.

2019 Ford F-150 Limited 3.5-Liter V-6 Engine

With Ford dropping four-door cars, the F-150 Limited is the second most luxurious vehicle at your Ford dealer, and with a hand-timed zero-to-60-mph acceleration of 5.2 seconds, it's one of the quickest trucks I've tested. For 2019, the F-150 Limited gets the premium-fuel-recommended, high-output, turbocharged 3.5-liter V-6 from the Raptor, which weighs more and swings heavier tires. With 450-horsepower, 510 pounds-feet of torque and a 10-speed automatic transmission, the F-150 Limited is genuinely quick, and being turbocharged minimizes power loss at altitudes. However, in 600-plus miles, I used full throttle for less than one minute, and engine noise isn't the sonorous note of competitors' V-8s.

2019 Ford F-150 Limited Cockpit

The F-150 Limited has a significant jump in base price coming only in SuperCrew short-bed configuration starting at $68,730 with two-wheel drive or $72,155 with four-wheel drive, but to use the power you'll need the latter. The Limited is quiet, feature-rich and roomy, a quite competent highway cruiser with massaging seats to break up a safe 600-mile range with the 36-gallon gas tank, yet were I racking up miles I'd opt for a Platinum diesel for fuel economy and the softer-impact 20-inch wheels; this Limited eked out a road-trip best of 20 mpg.

2019 Ford F-150 Limited 20-Inch Wheels

Related: Breaking Down the 2019 Ford F-150's Towing Capacities

An F-150 Limited 4WD comes loaded, including ventilated multicontour seats and B&O sound system plus adaptive cruise control and trailer backup assistant, but you can get a few options such as Trailer Tow Package, bedliner and tailgate step. There are plenty of choices for that money, whether you need a pickup or not, and much depends on how you define luxury.

Pickup Alternatives for $75,000

If you do need that bed, the 2019 Ram 1500 Limited is the best alternative, and arguably a more luxurious pickup based on cabin materials and a ride that echoes a car. An eTorque Hemi provides adequate power and beats F-150 Limited EPA ratings but isn't quite as fleet. The Ram's appearance and ambience are more sophisticated, and the optional 12-inch infotainment screen is superior. My neighbor called the Ford's touchscreen "so 2013" despite its function, and so is the general refinement and ride, even more so when towing.

Related: What's the Best Half-Ton Truck for 2018?

At this level, the Ram and F-150 have similar towing and load capacity, while each offers a feature or two the other doesn't: the Ford's massage seats, inflatable rear shoulder belts and trailer backup assist, or the Ram's coil rear or full air suspension, 12-inch Uconnect system and RamBoxes. If you can back up a trailer and don't need Ford's trailer backup assist, the most-similarly matched Ram is $6,500 less on its standard 20-inch wheels, and if you're more about appearance than comfort and pothole rejection, get 22-inch wheels and you're still $4,500 less.

A 2019 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali with the 6.2-liter V-8 doesn't match the F-150 or Ram's EPA ratings, or tow ratings, nor does it feel comparably plush, but it does offer sophisticated cameras (note the $250 trailer camera option requires a $3,000 wheel upgrade), a versatile tailgate and a head-up display. And if you're partial to metallic white paint, GMC charges about twice the price of others' pearl whites. With the 6.2-liter and Ultimate Package, a $69,000 Denali matches a Ram on 22s. Nissan's $60,000 Titan Platinum Reserve with the best-in-class five-year/100,000-mile warranty, and Toyota's $52,000 Tundra Platinum don't offer the same amenity content or tow more than 10,000 pounds, though most buyers would find them quite satisfactory.

Related: 2019 GMC Sierra 1500 First Drive: Nice as It Needs to Be?

This F-150 Limited with full-fuel curb weight of 5,580 pounds and a gross vehicle weight rating of 6,750 had an effective payload (occupants, cargo, tow ball weight, etc.) of 1,170 pounds, meaning a big family of four, some coolers and camping gear is it, and balancing any trailer near the limit might be a driver-only endeavor. For owners teasing those limits, the same money gets a nicely equipped F-250 Super Duty. It won't be as fast or smooth as the F-150 but will be more comfortable towing a 6-ton trailer or bringing home a ton of landscaping material.

SUV Alternatives for $75,000

If you seldom need a pickup bed or don't tow anything heavier than a wakeboard boat or mid-size recreational vehicle, $74,000 would get you a well optioned Mercedes-Benz GLE450 or, for the performance junkies, a Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT. If you need a rugged frame and solid towing with a lavish interior, a lightly optioned Infiniti QX80 4WD may do the trick.

However, if you don't require a pickup bed or plan on towing close to the Limited's maximum, the strongest argument against an F-150 Limited comes directly from Ford: the 2019 Ford Expedition Limited that our Cars.com friends named the best full-size SUV of 2018. For virtually the same money it brings all the same gadgets and amenities in more than twice as many colors, is rated to tow more than 8,000 pounds, adds a third row of seats, is far more maneuverable and easier to park, has a much better ride and simply feels more like a luxury vehicle.

Related: Find a Ford F-150 for Sale Near You

PickupTrucks.com's Editorial department is your source for automotive news and reviews. In line with PickupTrucks.com's long-standing ethics policy, editors and reviewers don't accept gifts or free trips from automakers. The Editorial department is independent of PickupTrucks.com's advertising, sales and sponsored content departments.

Editor's note: This post was updated July 24, 2019, to correct a headline error.

2019 Ford F-150 Limited Rear Profile

2019 Ford F-150 Limited Tailgate

2019 Ford F-150 Limited Headlight

2019 Ford F-150 Limited Badge

2019 Ford F-150 Limited Interior Woodgrain Door Detail

2019 Ford F-150 Limited Steering Wheel

2019 Ford F-150 Limited Backseat


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