Ford even sent us examples of 10-speed F-150s already on sale.
An earlier version of this story, citing a Reuters interview with Joe Hinrichs, president of the Americas for Ford, said that Ford was stockpiling 2017 F-150s to do final testing on the new 10-speed transmission. "We continued building but we’re holding (trucks) longer so we could do more testing and make sure everything is right before we release them,” Hinrichs told Reuters. A short time after we published the story a rep from the automaker reached out to tell us that new F-150s were not being held back and were in fact already on sale.
Ford sent us several links to online listings to prove that the 10-speed F-150 was indeed on sale. One is for an F-150 on sale at a dealership in Oklahoma while another is for an F-150 in Indiana. The trim levels are mostly XLTs and the pricing is about the same for all four examples we were sent, with the XLTs in Illinois and Iowa coming in at just under $50,000. Aside from the links Ford said that the 2017 10-speed F-150 has been being shipped to dealerships since last month (November). One interesting thing to note is that the quotes from Joe Hinrichs weren't disputed or even mentioned in the email we received. Maybe Hinrichs just misspoke in his interview?
The 2017 Ford F-150 with the 10-speed automatic will offer a one mile per gallon improvement in fuel economy compared to 2016 models with six-speed transmissions, according to federal fuel economy data. Only one engine is paired to the transmission: a 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6. It's good that Ford is isn't holding back its new pickup because it'll be a photo finish in the sales race between it and GM. A total of 733,287 F-series pickups were sold through the end of November, while GM's sales of its large pickups aren't far behind with 718,994 units sold in the same period. That cushion plus a new and more fuel-efficient truck should ensure that the F-Series is America's best-selling pickup for the 35th year in a row.