Last post on Jan 18, 2013 at 8:53 AM
You are in the Ford F-Series
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Ford F-150, Toyota Tundra, Chevrolet Silverado 1500, Dodge Ram Pickup 1500, GMC Sierra 1500, Nissan Titan, Car Buying, Truck
#475 of 577 Ford, better up your game
Jan 27, 2008 (11:37 am)
Mr. Rube...True enough about Big3 being tougher than Tundra. I own a 1st gen. Tundra that is a total city truck; never worked an honest day in its life. Reliable as it gets, as was my 394K '85 SR5. But, I looked at the video of the 2007 Tundra crashing and smashing around on a washboard. Disgraceful. The Ford was well-controlled, as was the GM truck. Boxed frame or not, you can make either stiff AND strong. C'mon, Toyota.
Now, combine what you saw in the video, the 2009 F-150 highlights, and Toyota's history. Toyota will fix all these flaws with time (but probably faster than Big3 would). The F-150 updates are merely cosmetic, with the exception of new trailer package. Finally, Toyota's history teaches us they ruthlessly pursue their target and don't let up until they capture it. If they want the "working" truck market AND Big3 sits on their laurels, Tundra will beat them all. Someday.
Ford, you are screwing up by not investing heavily in product. Make Toyota chase you instead of fearing what's in your rearview mirror. Toyota will catch you and crush you (and your Number 1 product) it you don't.
As for Big3, they are still better as Real trucks than the Tundra, for now. I drove the 2008 Tundra and Sierra Denali. The Tundra drove like hell. The GMC Sierra was far superior. I will buy the GMC, after previously buying a total of 4 Toyota's. The Tundra is far from sorted out, and uses crappy materials inside.
#476 of 577 Re: Coil springs ON THE REAR? [farmerrube]
Jan 27, 2008 (12:05 pm)
Good gawd, farmer rube, perhaps you need to read the posts and follow the thread. Of course coils can be made extremely heavy, as I've said in previous posts. BUT, that defeats entirely the purpose of using the coils on the Ram, which is ride quality. You can make a coil spring so stiff it won't flex at all, but what's the point of that?
Bob says that the Ram will be competitive, but not class leading. I totally agree, Bob. The Ram is already not class leading, it's in 3rd. It will soon be in 4th IMO. But in this business, if you aren't out in front you are losing sales. Like the old saying goes, "If you ain't the lead dog, the view never changes." If Dodge doesn't do something soon, instead of looking at the rumps of just GM and Ford, it will also be looking at the Tundra's rump. Not a good long-term view, IMO. I'd like to see Dodge open a big ol' can of whupass in the full size market, but apparently they folded and instead took the easy route.
Ram is clearly going for the lighter duty, softer riding market. What will be the impact on sales of that change in strategy? How about addressing that original point? Isn't this the thread to discuss sales leaders? Am I missing something?
Here's what I want in my next 1/2 ton 4x4 truck:
small v-8 diesel w/250 hp, 400 ft lbs., and 25+ mpg hiway
really nice interior, comfy seats, like the GMs currently have
robust, proven drive train parts
auto rear locker, front air locker
optional factory offroad pkg. incl. a mild lift (2"-3"), larger wheels and tires
Build that truck and I, and a bunch of guys, would stand in line to buy it.
#477 of 577 F-150 mostly cosmetic?
Jan 27, 2008 (1:08 pm)
Class exclusive features galore and you call it cosmetic?
The new 2009 Ford F-150’s “smart” features turn the half-ton pickup truck into an even more skillful tool.
SIRIUS Travel Link™ for real-time data on traffic, weather, fuel prices and more
Tailgate Step makes access to the bed easier
Integrated Box Side Step makes accessing the front of the box easier
Easy Fuel™ capless fuel filler system
Ford SYNC™ in-car communications system that allows hands-free operation of MP3 and cell phones
Trailer Sway Control
Integrated Trailer Brake Controller
Power running boards
Sony premium audio system
Most comprehensive safety package on any full-size pickup, including standard AdvanceTrac with Roll Stability Control, standard side curtain air bags, Ford’s Personal Safety System, and a hydro-formed high-strength steel body structure that improves roof strength.
6-inch stretch to SuperCrew features a fully-flat load floor
Stowable bed extender
Strongest cargo management system
The wheel is not reinvented but there is enough new stuff there that I think people will be trading in old ones sooner than they planed.
#478 of 577 Re: Coil springs ON THE REAR? [1offroader]
Jan 27, 2008 (4:06 pm)
I fully expect that one or more truck makers will follow Dodge's lead in offering coil rear springs on their 1/2-ton models the next time they're redesigned, which would be in 5 years or so. Maybe even IRS will show up by then, although that may be further down the road.
#479 of 577 Re: Coil springs ON THE REAR? [1offroader]
by kcram HOST
Jan 27, 2008 (4:29 pm)
A major chunk of the new technology Bob and I refer to is the ability to test trucks without building them. Computer simulation can easily determine in a couple of hours what used to take months in proving ground testing. Something as "simple" as changing where the coil's spring rates vary in order to maximize load without compromising ride can be done with mouse clicks, instead of having to forge another spring set.
The half-ton pickup customer is also not the same person from 40 years ago. This is the guy who used to buy full-size LTD and Caprice station wagons - those are not available any longer. He needs a back seat for the family but doesn't really care about an 8-foot bed because it won't fit in the garage. The bed is more appealing than the full-size SUV because he doesn't have to keep it clean. So now we have a selection of crew cab half-tons with beds around 5' 6" or so for these people. The commercial buyers are getting away from half-tons because the manufacturers have "consumerized" them... and a base 250/2500 is no longer a price problem.
In today's market, Dodge may have a better focus on what will actually sell, compared to Toyota's number-bragging. If you need to tow 10,000 pounds, do you want a truck that will be at its limits, or are you going to make the safer smarter choice and buy a 3/4 ton that offers a healthy margin above that?
kcram - Pickups Host
#480 of 577 Re: Coil springs ON THE REAR? [rsholland]
Jan 27, 2008 (4:33 pm)
Yep... puttin them coils on that dodge is a smart move now. That factory can tune them coils for cushy rides when empty and load them ones up when full. We got us a massey that works hard that way, thats for sure! That dodge factory got the knowin on them trucks, and how folks is workin them dodge ones hard. Problem with them forien ones is they break quicker if worked hard now. We need ones that haul and last long, like that 52 we still work them fields with now. Good luck on this one now!
#481 of 577 Re: F-150 mostly cosmetic? [mschmal]
by kcram HOST
Jan 27, 2008 (4:35 pm)
Trailer Sway Control
Not so fast, Mark... from the 09 Ram press kit:
Trailer Sway Control System: Reduces trailer sway and improves handling in adverse towing conditions caused by crosswinds and traffic. Software monitors the vehicle’s movement relative to the driver’s intended path, then applies brake pressure to slow the vehicle and increases the pressure on one front wheel to counteract sway induced by the trailer
If not at the same time, all the manufacturers will have these same features within a year. It's going to come down to design and price for most buyers.
kcram - Pickups Host
#482 of 577 Re: Coil springs ON THE REAR? [kcram]
Jan 27, 2008 (4:40 pm)
Exactly. Computer-aided engineering is allowing for new ideas to be explored that would have been unthinkable a few decades ago.
Most 1/2-tons today are family vehicle substitutes—that can take on weekend chores when needed. That's why we're seeing so many 1/2-ton crew cab versions. A 1/2-ton crew cab was unheard of a decade ago.
Yeah, the new Ram 1500 will probably ride and handle better than other 1/2-tons because of the coil springs. Dodge has stated it will have a payload and towing capabilities of the outgoing models. I see that as a win-win situation.
#483 of 577 Coils & 2009 F-150
Jan 27, 2008 (7:13 pm)
True, crew cabs 1/2 tons are now to haul family. In LALA land, freeways are irregular concrete where several mile sections can be teeth-jarring, chest-pounding rides, followed by smooth asphalt. I've been in crew versions of each of the Big3 products (but more than 5 years back), but no improvement in ride. Perhaps coils will help.
Mark, perhaps I was a little harsh on the F-150, but Serious improvements to the F-150 drivetrain are still needed. That would include more power from the 5.4L V8 and a 6 spd automatic. I drove the 5.4L and it sure didn't feel like 300 HP; it was slow. I drove a 4.6L to the CA high desert, and it felt reasonably quick. It turned into a high speed run to get it back to the rental place (85 MPH for 60 miles). Handled with confidence.
The F-150 drove much better than the '07 Tundra, & similar to my '00 Tundra (not a Real truck). It can be had with waaaay nicer interior than the '07 Tundra. BUT, I do not want another under-powered truck (did I forget to mention that the '00 Tundra doesn't breathe and power is really lacking). 350 HP and 6 spd is what I want, and I think that's what a lot of people want.
A car-savy buddy bought a new Sequoia (no, not an oxymoron). He "ooo's & ahhhs" about the 375 HP and 6 spd. IMHO, Ford needed these things badly to compete. Failing this could really hurt upcoming sales. Hope they can survive this decision.
#484 of 577 Coils & 2009 F-150
Jan 27, 2008 (8:32 pm)
I don't know much about pickup trucks particularly but here's how I imagine the conversation went at the Dodge head office:
[management] So... what are we going to do with the Ram? We keep getting ranked last in magazine articles and it ain't gettin' any younger!
[accounting] Well if we spend as much on a redesign as Ford and GM, but only sell half the units, we'll just continue to fall behind in profits.
[marketing] We need to pull a play out of our history books and make a bold statement. I say we swing for the fences! If we win big the company will be saved. (If not I've got a cousin at Toyota - hehehe.)
[consumer research] The new trend these days is recreational trucks. Nobody actually does hauling anymore. If we make it more comfortable maybe we can pull in more new customers than we lose old ones? You know, like the Ridgeline...
[engineering] Let's put coil springs on the back. It won't cost any more and its on the bottom of the truck where most people won't notice the change. It'll improve the ride for everyone with an empty bed.
[management] Something for nothing, eh? Sounds good to me. Proceed!