2012 Ford F-350 Review
Reviewed by Automobile Magazine on
The Ford F series is the most popular truck series in America, and with good reason. People with serious truck needs often swear by their F-150, and the F-150 can handle every day truck jobs with ease. But what if your truck needs go above and beyond the standard? If you’ve got serious cargo to haul, tough terrain to navigate or both, you need a heavy duty truck, and there’s no question that Ford is in the heavy duty truck business. When the F-150 isn’t quite enough to get it done, the Ford F-350 Super Duty is on hand to come to the rescue.
The 2012 Ford F-350 Super Duty truck is only a year removed from a major redesign that, among other things, enhanced the suspension for both comfort and functionality, and brought in some more powerful engines.
You can customize your 2012 Ford F-350 Super Duty by choosing between three cab sizes; the standard cab, the extended Super Cab or Crew Cab, as well as a longer or shorter bed length (8 feet vs. 6 feet 9 inches). You’ll also choose between single wheel and dual wheel rear axle designs. From there, you can choose from among four trim levels, the XL, the XLT, the Lariat and the King Ranch. Be aware that certain combinations of axle design, cab length, bed length and trim level won’t work, but you should be able to find one that works best for your truck needs.
To be honest, the Ford F-350 may be more truck than most people will ever need. But if you know your trucks, and you need a serious truck for serious work, it’s hard to do much better than the Ford F-350.
New For 2012
Since the Ford F-350 just underwent a major redesign the previous year, you won’t find too many big changes in the 2012 model. However, you will find even better tow ratings on the 2012 model, and the addition of smartphone connectivity to the Ford SYNC system through AppLink is a welcome feature that you will probably appreciate.
The 2012 Ford F-350 looks just as you want a heavy duty pickup truck to look-tough and durable. The base XL comes with 17 inch steel wheels and all-season tires, with telescoping trailer mirrors, a trailer hitch and wiring and painted finish bumpers. Additional exterior options include five-spoke Cast aluminum wheels, roof clearance lights, 6? angular black molded in-color running boards, a tailgate step, and all-terrain tires. The XLT adds swing out opening rear quarter windows and privacy glass, with alloy wheels. The Lariat trim, not available with regular cab, adds chrome finish bumpers and tube running boards, while the King Ranch, also not available with the regular cab, has painted finish bumpers, step running boards and 18-inch alloy wheels. Available exterior colors include Dark Blue Pearl Clearcoat Metallic, Forest Green Clearcoat Metallic, Vermillion Red Clearcoat, Black, and Oxford White Clearcoat.
Interior & Cargo
The interior of the Ford F-350 is comfortable and spacious, with manual adjustable lumbar support for the driver, vinyl upholstery and flooring, and with a 40/20/40 front bench seat, and in the Super Cab and Crew Cab versions, a 60/40 split folding rear seat. In the base model you’ll find a tilt and telescoping steering wheel, navigation options, power steering, air conditioning, and available SYNC telematics. You can upgrade to full power accessories, heated power mirrors with blind spot mirrors and four speaker sound with CD player. The Lariat trim features interior options like a power sliding rear window, eight way power front leather bucket seats with lumbar adjustment, dual zone climate control, enhanced trip computer, leather upholstery and on the steering wheel and eight speaker sound for satellite radio.
There is a full slate of reliable standard safety features that come with the 2012 Ford F-350, including four wheel antilock brakes, stability and traction control, trailer sway control, ventilated front disc and solid rear disc brakes and electronic brake force distribution. You’ll find a post-collision safety system and passenger airbag deactivation switch. The airbag system includes front head airbags and dual front side-mounted airbags. Other safety features include tire pressure monitoring, an engine immobilizer, child seat anchors, and front seatbelt pretensioners. Useful safety options include a rear camera and rear view parking sensor.
The Ford-350 is designed to let you carry serious loads over rough terrain without a problem. The enhanced suspension means a smooth ride when carrying big loads, although it is designed so that without a healthy load weighing it down, things can get a bit bumpy. The 6.2-Liter V-8 engine should provide all the power you need, producing 385 horsepower and 405 lb-ft. of torque, linked to a six speed automatic transmission. Depending upon the options you choose, this engine can drag up to 15,800 lbs., with a maximum towing capacity of at least 11,900 lbs. This truck comes with rear wheel drive but you can upgrade to all-wheel drive, and it is recommended. If the 6.2-Liter still isn’t generating enough power for you, Ford offers a massive turbocharged 6.7-Liter diesel V-8 engine that will give you 400 horsepower and a mighty 800 lb-ft. of torque, allowing you a maximum towing capacity with the right options, including fifth-wheel hookup, of 22,700 lbs., with a max capacity of at least 12,500 lbs. The FX4 Off-Road package makes off-road jobs a breeze with all-wheel drive, all-terrain tires, upgrades shocks, and skid plates. While the steering isn’t as responsive as some might like, you’ll probably find the sturdy, comfortable ride you get even while towing massive loads is worth the trade-off.
Key Competitors For The 2012 Ford F-350
- Chevrolet Silverado 3500 HD
- GMC Sierra
- Ram 3500
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