The Ford F-450 truly is the mother of all hard-working pickup trucks. When you need a solid, reliable pickup truck that gets the job done, you get a Ford F-150. When you need something more, something that can handle the toughest jobs, you get a Ford F-350. When you need a pickup truck to handle an impossible workload, the Ford F-450 is the truck you’re looking for.
In the past, the Ford F-450 was an entirely custom made vehicle, produced by buying a commercial chassis cab from Ford and then having an after-market outfitter put the rest of it together. Recognizing a serious need for high-powered, super duty trucks, Ford now does all the work for you, allowing you to purchase an intact Ford F-450 and drive it right off the lot and into a life of dependable hard work.
Unlike other Ford F-series models, the configuration of the 2012 Ford F-450 is limited to one: Crew Cab, long bed. The Ford F-450 only comes with one engine, a 6.7-Liter V-8 turbocharged diesel, and all Ford F-450s are all-wheel drive. That being said, these are probably the optimum features for the responsibilities your 2012 Ford F-450 is likely to have to take on anyway, and you do still have the same trim options you’ll find in other F-series Fords; the base XL, the XLT, the Lariat, and the awesome King Ranch.
To be honest, the Ford F-450 is probably more truck than most of us will ever need. The Ford F-150 is quite good enough for most truck users, and the Ford F-350 can do just about anything the 150 can’t. But if you’ve got to haul the biggest loads, navigate the toughest terrain, or both on a regular basis, or if you just want the big daddy of pickup trucks in your stable, go ahead and pick yourself out a nice Ford F-450 Super Duty.
New For 2012
While you will be happy to find improved tow ratings and payload ability in the 2012 Ford F-450, there are no other major changes in the Ford F-450 Super Duty pickup for 2012.
The 2012 Ford F-450 looks pretty much like the rest of the vehicles in the F-series, keeping in mind that each one is Crew Cab and eight foot long cargo bed. The black grille and bumpers give it an aggressive look that lets you know this truck means business. On the base XL model you’ll find 17 inch aluminum wheels, manual telescoping trailer tow mirrors, running boards and roof clearing lights. The XLT changes that black grille and bumper combination to an equally intimidating chrome set, along with heated mirrors and keyless entry. On the Lariat, you’ll find chrome tube step bars, as well as a power rear sliding window, power telescoping mirrors, rear parking sensors and foglights, and the fearsome King Ranch shows off its stuff with two tone paint, a distinctively styled exterior and a body color grill with chrome. Other options include stowable bed extender and sunroof. Exterior color options on the F-450 include Dark Blue Pearl Clearcoat Metallic, Vermillion Red Clearcoat, Tuxedo Black, and Oxford White Clearcoat.
Interior & Cargo
The interior of the Ford F-450, especially in the base model, is more designed for utility than for comfort. Upgrading to the Lariat or King Ranch will give you some pretty nice features, including leather upholstery and trim and a 4.2 inch LCD screen for navigation and vehicle info. Base interior features include a 40/20/40 split front bench and 60/40 split folding rear bench, vinyl upholstery, air conditioning, AM/FM radio and a tilt/telescoping steering wheel. Upgrading to the XLT gives you full power accessories and cloth upholstery, while doubling the sound system to four speakers and allowing you to play CDs and MP3s. Moving up to the Lariat gets you that LCD screen with Ford SYNC, ten way power front seats, power adjustable pedals, and eight speaker audio with satellite radio. Go all the way with the King Ranch and add Chaparral leather upholstery and heated, ventilated seats. A hard drive based navigation system is also an option.
You’ll find the same important safety features on the 2012 Ford F-450 that you’ll find in other F-Series vehicles and a few more. This includes a four wheel antilock braking system with front and rear ventilated disc brakes, stability and traction control along with electronic brake force distribution, front and rear head airbags and dual front side-mounted airbags, child seat anchors and rear door safety locks, a post-collision safety system, an engine immobilizer, and front seatbelt pretensioners. A rear view camera is available on the King Ranch.
While this large vehicle can get a bit unwieldy in typical urban situations due to its size and not tremendously responsive steering, the ride is generally smooth and quiet, and you’re not getting an F-450 to drive the kids to the downtown movie theater anyway. More importantly, you can’t argue with the power. This beast, with its 6.7-Liter turbocharged diesel V-6 engine tows multi-ton loads as easily as you would drag a child’s wagon. The engine, linked to a six speed automatic transmission with four-wheel drive, generates a whopping 400 horsepower with 800 lb-ft. of torque. This allows for a towing capacity of an incredible 17,500 lbs., and adding a fifth-wheel towing configuration skyrockets the muscle to an unheard of 24,500 lbs. Add to this a maximum payload capacity of 5260 lbs. and there’s just about nothing you can’t get from point A to point B in this mean machine. If your truck duties run to the off-road variety, add the FX4 off-road package for enhanced shock absorbers and skid plates.
Key Competitors For The 2012 Ford F-450
- Chevrolet Silverado
- Nissan Titan
- Dodge Ram