Ford F-150s will benefit from new cargo management and rearview
Just a few
years ago the only cargo management system you could find on a pickup
was bungee cords and plywood. Now almost every full size truck will
have a factory supplied payload organizer next year.
hasn’t lost its marketing mojo when it comes to the
factory installed cargo management system in the hauling portion of the
in the 1920s Procter and Gamble beat the competition and made a fortune
on shampoo simply by adding the words, “rinse,
lather, repeat” to the bottle. In a pickup truck analog,
FoMoCo has doubled the number of extruded aluminum C-channel side rails
to two on each wall. Do
you really need two sets of cargo rails and an assortment of plug-ins
to micromanage your payload? Probably not, but it sounds good when GM,
Toyota, and Nissan only come with a single rail to add accessories to.
And where every bragging point is a challenge, it probably won’t
be long before Ford’s competitors add a second rail to their
cargo systems also. Some sales guys at Alcoa are going to win more
than a few trips to the Bahamas for this move.
cargo management system setup comes well equipped with a pair of side-mounted
lockable plastic storage bins (matched to the truck’s
ignition key) that can each hold up to 60 pounds. The double walled
bins have drain holes to thermally manage any cold beverages you might
put in them. Also included are two crossbars that can hold up to 100
pounds and a header bar to split up the box into separate spaces. Slickly
designed, squeezable cleats are easier to move than the standard twist
type used on other trucks and can hold up to 600 pounds. One shortcoming,
the cargo management system will only be available on the 6.5-foot
improvisational tradition for pickup owners, Ford will offer its take
on a rearview camera for the F-150. The
optional eye removes the need for indecipherable spousal sign language
and confusing, “left,
no right, no left” commands while backing up to hitch a trailer
or into a tight parking stall. It’s mounted high up, next to
the tailgate’s lift handle instead of down on the rear bumper.
moves the camera’s video image from the console mounted
navigation display to the rearview mirror, so you don’t have
to drop an extra $2500 on a navi/DVD screen to get this option. In
normal driving conditions, with the video picture off, the rearview
mirror reflects light across its entire surface just like a standard
mirror. In reverse, though, the picture shines through the mirror’s
reflective layer and provides red, yellow, and green depth markers
to help center and alight the truck while backing up. The camera’s
fisheye lens ensures the driver can see the periphery of the vehicle
and not just a narrow angle. To assist with frequent forwards and backwards
maneuvers, the camera’s
video feed will remain on in the mirror for 5-seconds after putting
the truck into drive.
a few minutes practicing using the new backup system. It’s
immediately intuitive and extremely useful for seeing what’s
behind the truck on the pavement (like a rake or bicycle) or at tailgate
level (like a trailer or light pole) without having to rely only on
the incessant and increasingly urgent tones of the F-150’s ultrasonic
rear parking assist system. And for some very fine, slow maneuvers
we actually turned off the sonar’s irritating chimes and went
100% visual using the new system.
hasn’t been announced yet for the cargo management or
rearview camera systems.