Review update: 2019 Ford F-150 Limited shows great power comes with great thirst

The 2019 Ford F-150 is wildly popular for a reason. There’s one for just about every need, or at least every pickup truck need. 

From base XL and XLT trucks to the high-zoot King Ranch, Platinum, and Limited models there’s an F-150 variant for just about every day of the week. For 2019, the competition is new with the glitzy, high-tech 2019 Ram 1500 and large 2019 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and 2019 GMC Sierra 1500 all looking to outdo the F-150—especially in high-spec versions with eye-popping price tags.

The F-150 will have none of that. This year, the Limited model added the Raptor’s high-output, twin-turbo V-6 engine. In a truck that already prides itself on doing more with more, the 450-horsepower transplant is right at home. 

With a TCC Rating of 6.5, the 2019 Ford F-150 wins big with the 10-speed automatic, handsome design, options, and comfort. Where it misses is its price tag, fuel economy, and some interior materials.

I spent a week living with the 2019 Ford F-150 Limited to see if the best-selling vehicle in the U.S. is still the leader of the pack. Here’s where the Blue Oval’s workhorse hit and where it missed:

2019 Ford F-150 Limited

Hit: All the boost. For 2019, the F-150 Limited received a power increase thanks to the Raptor’s high-output twin-turbo V-6. Power climbed from 375 hp and 470 pound-feet of torque to 450 hp and 510 lb-ft of torque. The F-150 Limited is flat-out quick. Stab the throttle and it pushes passengers back into the soft leather-covered seats. Slap a 5,000-pound boat and trailer behind it, and the nearly 20-foot-long truck lunges forward to attack the pavement despite the load. The turbochargers provide a flat torque curve that instills confidence that there’s power on tap regardless of the task at hand.

2019 Ford F-150 Limited

Miss: It drinks premium, a lot of it. There’s no such thing as a free lunch, or in the F-150 Limited’s case, free power. Unloaded and lugging around town, the F-150 Limited’s twin-turbo V-6 averaged a reasonable 19 mpg according to the trip computer. That was in an ideal suburban situation with a light foot and little need to dig into the turbos. Unloaded on a straight highway haul for 204 miles, it averaged just 17.6 mpg because the turbos were boosting to keep it above 70 mph. I hooked up a 5,000-pound boat and trailer to the F-150, and its mileage plummeted to a dismal 8.1 mpg over 156 miles cruising at 70 mph with Tow Mode engaged to lock out the top two gears. The gauge cluster indicated about 9 psi of turbo boost while cruising down the highway and about 15 psi helping to guzzle fuel at the hint of a hill.

2019 Ford F-150 Limited

Hit: All the towing tech needed, and then some. The F-150 has so many tech features for towing that it’s worth reading the owner’s manual. In addition to trailer-sway control that uses the stability control system to keep things, well, stable, drivers can program their trailer’s measurements into the F-150’s touchscreen. That’ll tell the blind-spot monitoring system what’s going on back there. But the real ace is Pro Trailer Backup Assist, a knob that drivers can use to steer the trailer the way it needs to move instead of reversing in the opposite direction they expect. Unfortunately, the system requires users to attach white and black stickers to the trailer to detect its location. A local Ford dealership said the sticker package retails for a hefty $55.

2019 Ford F-150 Limited

Miss: Plastics aren’t fantastic. The F-150’s interior is eclipsed by its Ram rival, especially for the $75,000 price tag attached to my test truck. The injection-molded plastics throughout the interior of the F-150 don’t impress. The grab handles are the worst offender thanks to poorly integrated caps to cover the screws that hold them in place. Molding lines are visible on the door panels, and the pieces that don’t look nice certainly don’t feel expensive. 

2019 Ford F-150 Limited

Hit: It’s really comfortable. The front seats are Barcaloungers for the road. The rear bench seat is firmer and flatter than the front seats, but it’s still road-trip worthy. While there’s plenty of space up front, it’s the rear seat that’s palatial with stretch-out leg room.

2019 Ford F-150 Limited

Miss: It costs how much? The 2019 Ford F-150 starts from about $30,000, but my tester cost $74,775. This isn’t your grandpa’s pickup, and it certainly doesn’t cost what your grandpa’s pickup cost. With an aluminum body, all modern active safety tech, and the high-output twin-turbo V-6 engine, Ford’s priced the 2019 F-150 Limited like a luxury vehicle—not a truck.

At $74,775, my 2019 Ford F-150 Limited was well-equipped with heated and cooled massaging front seats, adaptive cruise control, 22-inch polished aluminum wheels, an 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, spray-in bedliner, and tailgate step.

While the 2019 Ford F-150 Limited doesn’t has the flashy bits or headline-grabbing tech of some of its newer competitors, it offers the most power, most capability, and  comfortable interior for those that need a luxury truck for work or play.


2019 Ford F-150 Limited

Base Price: $29,650

Price as tested: $74,775

EPA fuel economy: 17/21/19 mpg

The hits: Lots of power, great at towing, comfortable interior, tech that helps make work easier

The misses: Drinks a lot of premium fuel, interior plastics, gets expensive

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