Evolution of The Ford F-150

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History of the Ford F-150

Nine years after Ford stuns the world with the first motor vehicle, the company released their first F-series truck, which would end up being one of the most recognizable trucks on the market. Resulting in the popular F-150, the F-series truck has seen a colorful history with a ton of improvements along the way.

First generation (1948–1952)

1948 saw the beginning with the Ford F-Series under the name Ford Bonus Built. They offered several variations including a classic truck, pick up, cab over engine, and a school bus chassis.

Second, Third, and Fourth generations (1953–1966)

Offered now in different weight classes, the half-ton truck officially became the F-100. Improvements to engine, chassis and overall styling were very apparent through this period. In 1961, the Ford F-series saw the integration of bed and cab together as a unibody design. This year’s release was lower and wider than previous generations and offered a new Twin I-Beam suspension.

Fifth and Sixth generation (1967–1979)

The fifth generation F-100 began to help the modern truck begin to take shape. Features such as integrated headlights, larger windows, and improved interior space were the main attraction of this 1967 model. 1979 saw the first official F-150 which would quickly surpass the F-100 in popularity. New parking lights, rectangular headlights, and separate front row seating became standard.

Seventh and Eighth generation (1980–1986)

Beginning in a new decade, this generation emphasized exterior aerodynamics and an increase in interior comfort with a much-needed interior restyling. 1981 introduced the XLT Lariat and Nite Rider editions. Features such as power steering, anti-lock brakes, and a flush grill with embedded headlights were also seen for the first time.

Ninth generation (1992–1997)

1995 marked a milestone for the F-150 as it was the year where the F-150 earned the title of top-selling vehicle. A modern, aerodynamic design featuring a slightly curved hood and the introduction of the SVT lightning sports truck were major highlights for the ninth generation.

Tenth generation (1997–2004)

Featuring the biggest redesign in over ten years, this generation was truly the year of the modern truck for Ford. The company also began to market the F-150 as a casual use truck and pushed the F-250 and 350 towards commercial users.

Eleventh generation (2004–2008)

An increase in consumers using the F-150 as a primary vehicle led to increased cab size, engine size, and substantially more storage. Extended cab and Super Duty F-150s started to make a real splash for ford customers.

Twelfth generation (2009–2014)

Along with improvements across the board to engines, suspension, and more, the twelfth generation saw the release of the sporty and exciting Ford Raptor, a new frontier in sports and off-roading for trucks everywhere.

Thirteenth generation (2015–2020)

Although the design mostly stayed the same, Ford used mostly aluminum over the heavy-duty steel frame. This allowed for a lighter overall weight with much higher rust resistance. This generation also signaled the release of the Raptor 2.0, a powerhouse with a 510 horsepower V6 engine.

Fourteenth Generation 2021-Present

Many of this generation’s changes come from the inside, including a 12.0-inch touchscreen, a multitude of driver-assist features, and more. Ford also goes electric with the all-new Ford F-150 Lightning.