To help drivers tow better, Ford is adding new trailering technology to the F-150.
Trailer sway control works with the F-150’s traction control system to automatically brake the wheels or reduce engine power if the truck’s yaw sensors detect trailer sway. This includes asymmetrically braking the truck's wheels, opposite the sway, to cancel out uncontrolled trailer motions.
First offered in the 2005 Super Duty, and also in GM's 2007 heavy duty pickups, the 2009 F-150 can be optionally equipped with a factory integrated Trailer Brake Controller. The brake controller operates the trailer's brakes at the same time the truck's brakes are applied. Brake sensitivity is easily adjusted by the driver squeezing two toggle (i.e. gain) switches on the dashboard. It's intuitively positioned to the lower right of the steering wheel.
The slick reverse backup camera system that first debuted on the 2008 Ford F-150 adds the capability to display its picture on both the rear view mirror and in the navigation display – new for the 2009 model year. The image includes colored guides that give the driver a better perspective of the vehicle’s center point and periphery.
The 2009 Ford F-150 can't arrive soon enough for Ford. The company watched sales of its F-Series trucks fall over 12% last year, as the economy slowed, GM brought out all-new half-tons, and the redesigned Toyota Tundra gave buyers another full size truck to shop.
The addition of a six-speed automatic is the most important change. We're expecting the new shifter to give the 4.6L and 5.4L V8 powertrains a second wind until new, more powerful and fuel efficient V6 and V8 engines can arrive over the next few years.
The long list of interior upgrades, innovations, and improvements also carry the ball forward to make the F-150 more comfortable and luxurious than ever before and continue the truck's reputation as the benchmark in this segment.
The 2009 Ford F-150 goes on sale this fall.