FORD F-350 SUPER DUTY

The F-350, like most heavy-duty rigs, is highly customizable at almost every trim level. As a good F-350 starting point, though, we recommend the XLT. It comes with cloth upholstery instead of vinyl and a basic version of Ford’s Sync infotainment system. From there you have several available upgrades to choose from, including any specifications you’d like to make regarding bed length and cab size.

Overall rating

Modern trucks are more capable than ever, but some jobs require an extra dose of power. That’s where the 2019 Ford F-350 Super Duty comes in. It offers massive tow ratings, enormous payload capacity, and all the high-tech features that modern heavy-duty truck buyers require. Depending on your preferences and the hauling capability you require from your F-350, you can go with one of two engines: the standard 6.2-liter V8 or a turbocharged 6.7-liter diesel V8. Both are powerful and provide plenty of hauling potential. Yet it’s the truck’s multiple driver assist features that fully illustrate how modern the F-350 is. Clearly, the F-350 is both capable and modern. But it’s also downright cozy. There’s abundant space in the cabin, supportive seats, and plenty of trim-level upgrades that are creature comfort-oriented. Hook up your trailer, load up all your heaviest gear, and you’ll still have a vehicle that will pamper you on the longest of road trips. The 2019 Ford F-350 is a great pick for a modern heavy-duty truck that provides maximum comfort and capability cars covers.

Ford F-350 Super Duty models

The 2019 Ford F-350 Super Duty is a full-size heavy-duty pickup available in six trim levels: XL, XLT, Lariat, King Ranch, Platinum and Limited. It can be configured as a regular-cab, extended-cab (aka SuperCab) or crew-cab body, with either a 6.8-foot or an 8.2-foot bed length. The standard 6.2-liter gasoline V8 produces 385 horsepower and 430 pound-feet of torque, while an available turbocharged 6.7-liter diesel V8 puts out an impressive 450 hp and 935 lb-ft of torque. Both are mated to a six-speed automatic transmission.

Base XL models are just above the fleet level and come standard with features that include 17-inch steel wheels, manual front locking hubs (four-wheel-drive models), intermittent wipers, a rearview camera, manually telescoping towing mirrors, a removable locking tailgate with tailgate lift assist, and a 2.5-inch trailer hitch receiver with a 2-inch insert. Also included are air conditioning, vinyl upholstery, manual windows and door locks, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, a driver information display, and a four-speaker audio system. Extended- and crew-cab models get a six-speaker system. Step up to the XLT and you get 18-inch alloy wheels, power-adjustable heated mirrors, four locking cleats in the bed, a trailer-brake controller, keyless entry, cloth upholstery, rear underseat lockable storage, power windows and locks, and rear privacy glass (extended- and crew-cab models only). The XLT also includes cruise control, an alarm system, the Sync voice-controlled infotainment system, a 4.2-inch display, a USB port, and a CD player and satellite radio. The Western-themed King Ranch trim level, which is only offered on crew-cab models, adds unique alloy wheels, automatic high beams, automatic wipers, LED box lighting, keyless entry and start, remote start, upgraded leather upholstery, heated and ventilated front seats, driver-seat memory settings, a power tilt-and-telescoping and heated steering wheel, and a navigation system with satellite radio.

Choosing the Platinum model, again offered only on crew-cab models, gets you 20-inch alloy wheels, adaptive steering, LED headlights, automatic wipers, power running boards, a remote tailgate release, a built-in tailgate step, multicontour front seats, and blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert. Top-of-the-line Limited models include everything from the Platinum model and add a surround-view camera system, adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist, a panoramic sunroof, and a Limited-exclusive two-tone leather interior. Many of the features standard on upper trim levels are offered as options on the rest of the lineup. Other noteworthy options include a power sunroof, a heavy-duty trailer tow package (offered only with the turbodiesel engine), a massive 48-gallon fuel tank, different axle ratios with an electronically locking rear differential, an FX4 off-road package, and a fifth-wheel/gooseneck hitch prep package. That options list goes on with adaptive cruise control, collision warning with brake support, skid plates (four-wheel-drive models only), an Ultimate Trailer Tow Camera System with a total of seven cameras, a separate rearview camera that can be mounted on a customer’s trailer, trailer tire-pressure monitoring and a spray-in bedliner.

Driving

Thanks to its stout engine and chassis, the F-350 is capable of taking on just about anything. Whether it’s hauling heavy loads or taking the family to dinner, the Super Duty impresses with its smooth ride and responsive powertrain.

Acceleration

The 6.7-liter turbodiesel handles all requests for power nearly exactly the same: There’s a brief pause as the turbos gather speed, followed by an unrelenting wave of torque. Whether you’re towing, off-roading or just trying to merge into traffic, the F-350’s power delivery doesn’t seem to change.

Braking

The pedal feedback is a bit grabby and wooden at first, and it’s soft through the rest of its travel. This characteristic causes a slight disconnect in expectations, but you can simply apply more force, and the F-350 will respond willingly.

Steering

Though the F-350 has a relatively numb steering feel, particularly on-center, its steering weight is surprisingly light at first and linearly increases in resistance. Thanks to the adaptive steering, feedback increases once the front end has some weight on it, such as when cornering.

Handling

The F-350 has surprisingly snappy turn-in, which helps out around town, but there’s no escaping its sheer size and weight. Hard-edge bumps can upset the chassis, particularly midcorner.

Drivability

The F-350’s transmission upshifts quickly and smoothly. Powertrain response lags slightly, but that’s to be expected from a large turbodieselpowerplant. When empty, downshifts happen smoothly and quickly as well. If there’s any serious tow weight, the tow-haul mode keeps excessive shifts under control.

Off-road

Our truck had a lockable rear differential and shift-on-the-fly 4WD, but you must be going slow and shift to neutral before engaging 4L. Aside from its tremendous size, the F-350 is sure-footed and adept. Thank the optional FX4 off-road package on our truck for that.

Comfort

Long trips are welcomed in the Super Duty thanks to its quiet cabin and plush leather interior. Interior noise is well-muted, with just the thrum of the Power Stroke engine to be heard. Once you make the climb up into the cab, you don’t want to come back down.

Seat comfort

The F-350’s leather seats feature memory function and power adjustability for both front seats. The seat massagers spoil the driver and passenger, and they add to the seats’ natural plushness. The three-zone lumbar adjustability allows for fine-tuning. But the rear middle seat is stiff and narrow.

Ride comfort

The F-350 Super Duty’s comfort when unladen is just about the same as when it’s loaded down. This jack-of-all-trades is an easy road-trip companion, with only the slightest judder from hard-edge concrete slabs and potholes intruding into the cabin.

Noise & vibration

At idle you can easily hear the clackity-clack of the diesel engine, and as you accelerate, you can faintly hear the intake whoosh letting you know the engine’s taking care of business. Once up to speed, the powertrain noise settles down to a calm roar. Wind and road noise is well-damped.

Climate control

The two-zone climate control is easy to use and can be manipulated by smallish buttons on the center console or through the head unit. The cabin cools down quickly, and it holds temperature well. The seat ventilation was virtually nonfunctional in our test truck.

Interior

The Super Duty’s interior is not only comfortable but also very functional. Its digital display is customizable, and you can check tire pressures for both the truck and trailer right from the cab. There are enough physical buttons so that you don’t always have to hunt and peck on a screen.

Ease of use

While the hard buttons are small and close together, most functions can be handled purely on screen through Ford’s Sync 3 system. Knobs still control the climate control temperature and the sound system volume and tuning.

Getting in/getting out

Power-retractable steps are standard on Platinum models, and they greatly enhance ease of entry and exit, although it’s still a leap. The front roof-pillar handle helps steady you on your way in. But the doors are large and, combined with the width of the truck, make parking in narrow spots a chore.

Driving position

The F-350’s upright style of driving is appropriate for the class. Adjustable pedals and a power tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel are part of the memory package, ensuring different-size drivers can be comfortable.

Roominess

There’s no lack of interior room, with a rear seat generous in width and kneeroom. Front passengers can set their seats wherever they want and not intrude into the rear passenger room. Headroom is prodigious as well, with plenty of elbow and shoulder room at all seating positions.

Visibility

It’s a big truck, so blind spots are expected. The blind spots created by the tall hood line and long rear bed are mitigated somewhat by the button-activated camera system, and blind-spot detection helps on the sides. Our only wish is that the blind-spot indicators would be bigger.

Quality

The Platinum interior uses a high-grade leather, but plastic panels let you know you’re in a work truck. Though some people won’t mind, it could be a deal-breaker for others.

Utility

Utility is what the Super Duty is all about thanks to its high gross vehicle weight rating and fifth-wheel prep. Our test truck had no shortage of weight-carrying capability. It easily towed nearly 7,000 pounds over 120 miles, with gusting winds and hills to reckon with.

Child safety seat accommodation

The rear offers three child safety seat positions with easy-to-interface lower LATCH anchors. The top LATCH anchors are nylon loops that thread over the top of the seats and underneath the headrests.

Towing

The F-350 offers a maximum conventional tow capacity of 21,000 pounds or up to 32,000 pounds with a gooseneck hitch. The F-350 can be programmed to remember certain trailers to call up brake gain and blind-spot settings. The power-extending side mirrors aid visibility.

Technology

Thanks to the Sync 3 interface, even work trucks can feel modern and high-tech. The F-350 also has adjustable blind-spot detection, so its field of view can cover a trailer. The surround-view cameras help with parking and trailering, and the electronic tailgate release is nice to have.

Audio & navigation

Ford’s Sync 3 system is easy to understand and use. The large touch surfaces make navigating a breeze, although you can never get the perfect zoom factor on the map.

Smartphone integration

Dual USB outlets and Bluetooth connectivity make sure smartphone integration is a piece of cake. Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are included.

Driver aids

The optional adaptive cruise control system works appropriately. It’s especially helpful when you’re trying to stay under the towing speed limit. But the feedback settings on the lane departure warning system need more differentiation.

Voice control

Sync 3’s voice control system recognizes natural language and works on the audio, navigation and, of course, phone calls. Push the voice button longer, and you can tap directly into Siri or Android voice prompts.

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