With the EPA holding the Silverado's diesel back, Ford takes full advantage.
The battle for the title of America’s number one truck-maker is a brutal one. While Ford, Ram, and Chevrolet are technically all winners given that sales numbers and profits generated by the F-150, 1500, and Silverado are nearly as strong as the loyalty each truck's customers bestow on the brand, every conquest sale a Big Three company garners can mean another guaranteed buyer who comes back generation after generation.
And despite the fact the Ford F-150 has been the nation’s best selling vehicle for four decades, if Chevy or Ram slip up, you can bet it’s going to swoop in and try to steal more customers. That’s actually exactly what Ford is currently doing, reports The Drive.
The Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra’s stumble came when the truck makers had to delay the release of the 3.0-liter Duramax diesel thanks to more stringent EPA certification standards for diesel engines. Blame Volkswagen for that, but it’s still hurting General Motors since it means Silverado and Sierra fans wanting a small diesel engine will have to wait until the 2020 model-year so that GM can bring out its competitor to the 3.0-liter Power Stroke diesel in the Ford F-150.
And in what could be seen as a direct assault on GM, Ford is moving to encourage more customers on the fence about buying a diesel F-150 to step up and get one. That’s because Ford is bringing the 3.0-liter Power Stroke diesel to the F-150’s XLT trim.
Previously, buyers had to opt for a Lariat, King Ranch, or Platinum-trimmed F-150s in order to have the engine as an option, but now they can save the extra cash and go with the XLT. That brings the 3.0-liter diesel’s base price down to $46,225 including destination, down from $47,265 on the Lariat F-150. It’s not a huge saving, but the move also gives F-150 buyers more room for customizability.
The F-150’s level of customization, which allowed there to be 25 million different ways to option Ford’s superstar pickup in 2016, has always been one of the truck’s main selling points. The fact that the Blue Oval’s fairly outstanding diesel engine (we fell in love when we drove it) is available across another trim is sure to make the F-150 an even harder contender for Chevy and GMC to beat.