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The Ford F-150: An Ode to Innovation and Sales Volume

With the exception of perhaps tomato catsup and air, few things are more ubiquitous on the North American landscape than the Ford F-150.  It and its F-Series stable mates have held the titles of best-selling pickup truck in America since before Watergate went down and the overall best-selling vehicle since Return of the Jedi was fresh. Ford reports that in 2014, it sold a staggering 743,851 F-Series trucks, which averages out to about 3 trucks per minute during business hours.

Ford F-150 Domination

Comparatively, the next best selling vehicles are the Chevrolet Silverado and the Ram Pickup that moved 529,755 and 439,789 units sold respectively. The first car on the list, the Toyota Camry, came in at number four with 428,606 examples purchased. These numbers are indicative of the American obsession with the full-sized pickup truck and it’s certainly of note that even in such a competitive marketplace, the F-Series outsells its nearest competitor by over 40%. For that reason, Supreme Suspensions offers a wide variety of Ford F-150 leveling kits, as well as for its ¾- and 1-ton versions.

The F-series nameplate first appeared in 1948 when Ford developed its first truck chassis that was separate from its car line. Across its thirteen generations, the F-series has offered dozens of engines as well as several body styles and cargo capacities. Originally conceived as a spartan and utilitarian work appliance, it has evolved to include luxuries and refinements befitting of the fanciest of luxury cars.

A Legacy of Ford F-150 Innovation

In 1965, Ford introduced the Twin I-Beam front suspension on its light duty 2wd pickup trucks. More or less a modified swing axle design, it allowed the front wheels to be suspended independently from one another, a first for full-sized pickups. This system afforded the ruggedness necessary for a utility truck combined with the comfort and maneuverability that was then only found in passenger cars. For the 1980 model year, the light duty F-Series gained a version of the Twin I-beam suspension on 4wd models, pre-dating the independent front suspension on 4WD GM trucks by a full eight model years.

In 2015, for its thirteenth generation, the F-150 was completely overhauled and features a body constructed primarily from aluminum, another first for the full-sized pickup market. This alloy body helps save almost 750 pounds from the last model and, especially when ordered with an optional turbocharged V6 in lieu of a V8, offers significant fuel economy improvements over its competitors. Available King Ranch, Platinum, and Limited trims are brimming with the latest safety and luxury technology (even massaging seats!); a far cry from the bare bones farm trucks that kicked off the F-Series line in 1948.

The Ford F-150’s momentum does not show any signs of slowing with a reboot of the bonkers Raptor off-road special due next fall as a 2017 model. Confirmed details are sparse at this point but expect to find an upgraded suspension featuring Fox Racing shocks with an increase in travel over the old model’s. It’ll be powered by a twin-turbo V6 bolted to Ford’s first 10-speed automatic transmission. Power ratings will likely be north of 450 with gobs and gobs of torque to go along with that. Other rumors around the campfire include the spotting of a camouflaged test mule that’s said to be powered by Jaguar-Land Rover’s clever turbo diesel V6 as well as the unofficial promise of a hybrid drivetrain by the end of the decade.

Despite such a design risk taken by switching the F-150’s construction to aluminum, it still maintains a stronghold on the highly lucrative North American full-sized truck market. From ambulances to delivery trucks and posh mall crawlers, it’s virtually impossible to travel anywhere on this continent without crossing paths with a Ford F-series in some form or another.

1997-2003 Ford F-150 1″ to 3″ Adjustable Front Steel Torsion Keys Suspension Leveling Lift Kit 4WD 4×4

  • 2x Front Lift Steel Torsion Keys
  • Installation Instructions
PRODUCT ID# 13468
$84.95

1997-2003 Ford F-150 Full Add a Leaf Rear Suspension Lift Kit 4WD 4×4

  • 2x Front Lift Steel Torsion Keys
  • 2x Rear Add-a-Leaf Springs
  • Installation Instructions
PRODUCT ID# 13474
$179.95

1997-2004 Ford F150 Full Suspension Lift Kit 4WD 4×4

  • 2x Front Lift Steel Torsion Keys
  • 2x Rear Billet Lift Blocks Anodized Black
  • 4x Zinc Plated U-Bolts
  • Installation Instructions
PRODUCT ID# 759
$164.95$174.95

2004-2017 Ford F150 Front Suspension Lift Kit 2WD 4WD

  • 2x Front Billet Lift Spacers
  • Installation instructions
PRODUCT ID# 1415
$79.95$94.95

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