Classic car debates can get heated, but this one is for sure: The Ford F-series is the heavyweight champion of American roads. Both incredibly essential and undisputedly popular, the F-150 has topped the sales charts for over 35 years. Here are some interesting facts about the series American classics.
The Ford F-1 Debuted in 1948
Almost instantly, the F-150’s grandfather, the Ford F-1 became an American hit among farmers and small business owners. Many of those farmers use it for hauling and transportation purposes. The first F-Series introduced eight levels of trucks: F-1 for the half-ton, F-2 for the three-quarter-ton, and up to the F-7 and F-8 for heavy-duty.
Ford Manufactured Versions in Brazil
In 1962, Ford and Sulamericana teamed up to produce trucks in Brazilian factories. These were built on the Ford F-series frame but looked very different than the trucks we’re used to seeing. Some of these versions included the Monaco and GB Fly which were combinations of Brazilian car designs with the functionality of Ford trucks.
The F-150 Moniker Debuted in 1975
In 1975, the name F-150 was coined when Ford named their intermediate model. The lighter F-100 and the heavier F-250 were also introduced that same year, but the intermediate F-150 is what stuck. Since 1975, the F-150 has become the best-selling truck in history.
The Ford Bumper Lasted for 20 Years
The Ford bumper remains a statement part of the classic truck. First produced in 1959, they were so much of a hit that Ford kept producing the same version for the next 20 years. It was easy to find replacements for trucks coming in either chrome or painted to match the body.
The Unibody was the Worst
Sometimes taking risks work, and other times they don’t. The unibody is a prime example of when they don’t. In 1961, Ford decided to try something new by making the truck’s cab and bed into a single piece. Ford aimed for a win-win situation; they introduced a clean, new design while cutting down the costs of production time.
Ford trucks built a reputation for resilience. So when people started using trucks for their main purpose like putting heavy items in the back, there were some issues. The doors began popping open all on their own. Sometimes they would never shut due to the bed’s irreversible damage. Needless to say, that was the end of the unibody.
Ford Offered a Harley-Davidson Edition
Harley-Davidson and Ford teamed up in the later 1990s to earlier 2000s to offer a motorcycle edition of the Ford F-150. Decorated in chrome trim and black leather, it’s difficult to name two better American vehicle brands. In fact, most recently, Harley-Davidson and Tuscany Motor Co. collaborated to build an all-new custom Ford F-150 Harley-Davidson edition pickup truck for the 2019 model year.
Hennessey Motorsports' F-150 is the Most Expensive
Starting at $349,000, the most expensive F-150 is the Hennessey Motorsports' F-150 VelociRaptor 6x6. It includes the base 2017 – 2020 Raptor 4-door truck, 6X6 locking rear axles, upgraded Fox suspension, upgraded 20-inch wheels and off-road tires, special front and rear bumpers, rollbar and LED lights. The 600+ HP upgrade includes upgraded twin turbochargers, stainless steel exhaust modifications, upgraded front mounted air to air intercooler and plumbing and re-tuned factory computer. There are only about 100 of these made.
Watch Hennessey Motosports’ F150 race a GT350:
It was Walmart’s Owner’s Car of Choice
In 1979, Walmart founder Sam Walton purchased a brand new sixth-generation F-150. Since then, he drove it almost every day until his death in 1992. For a period of time, Walton was the richest man in the United States. Walton was once asked why the truck was his car of choice after he made his first billions. Walton famously responded saying, “What am I supposed to haul my dogs around in, a Rolls-Royce?” His truck is currently on display in a Walmart museum in Bentonville, Arkansas.
No matter who you are, the world over agrees that the F-150 is one of the most legendary American cars out there. If you’re looking to be cool and stay cool when the heat is on, Original Air has you covered for your original AC kits. Shop some of our most popular Ford Upgrade Kits