2018 Ford F-150

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MSRP: $27,705 - 64,785

2018 Ford F-150 Review

The 2018 Ford F-150 sees a significant midgeneration refresh. The F-150 combines a lineup of powerful and capable engines with a roomy and high-quality cabin, making it one of the highest-ranked full-size trucks. 




Critics' Rating: 9.5
Performance: 8.6
Interior: 8.6
Safety: 9.8
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

Pros & Cons

  • Class-leading towing and hauling capacity
  • Good gas mileage
  • Lots of tech features
  • Spacious, supportive seats
  • Cabin quality a notch below rivals’

Is the Ford F-150 a Good Truck?

The Ford F-150 is one of the best trucks out there. It boasts best-in-class towing and hauling capacities thanks to several muscular engine choices, many of which also deliver good fuel economy. By truck standards, the F-150 has agile handling and a comfortable ride. Available features like Trailer Backup Assist help you maneuver better when towing, and the bed has lots of other upgrades to make your life easier while hauling cargo. Inside, you’ll find plenty of passenger room and a reasonably nice cabin.

Should I Buy the Ford F-150?

The Ford F-150 has been the best-selling truck in America for four decades, and it's been the best-selling vehicle of any kind for only a few years less than that. With those chops, it's hard to argue against buying one. Still, some other full-size trucks give the F-150 a run for its money.

The Ram 1500 has one of the most upscale cabins in the class, and it boasts an extremely comfortable ride. That's at the expense of utility, though. The Ram is less capable than the F-150 when it comes to towing. On the other hand, the Chevrolet Silverado is right up there with the F-150 in terms of hauling and towing. The Silverado also has a comfortable cabin with plenty of tech features.

Compare the F-150, Silverado, and Ram 1500 »

Should I Buy a New or Used Ford F-150?

The Ford F-150 sees some updates for 2018, though it is part of a generation that began with the 2015 model year. Most changes involve its powertrains and towing capabilities. Some of its engines now provide a bit more power (an extra 8 to 10 horsepower for the base V6 and optional V8; no change for the midrange EcoBoost V6s), and its maximum towing capacity increased from 12,200 pounds to 13,200 pounds. Additionally, the 10-speed automatic transmission that debuted in 2017 models is now more widely available, and fuel economy with some models nudges up slightly (1 mpg more in the city or on the highway, depending on the model). The truck's front end sports an updated fascia across all trim levels as well.

These changes are nice, but if you're trying to conserve your funds, you won't miss much by going with an older model in this generation. You can get a very similar truck for less money by buying a 2015, 2016, or 2017 model. With any of these options, you'll get a great truck that performs well in our rankings and is a popular choice among consumers. To research some other models in this generation, check out our reviews of the 2015, 2016, and 2017 Ford F-150. If you decide an older model is right for you, check out our Used Car Deals page to learn about savings and discounts on used vehicles.

Compare the 2016, 2017, and 2018 Ford F-150 »

We Did the Research for You: 37 Reviews Analyzed

We analyzed 37 Ford F-150 reviews – along with safety and reliability ratings, cost of ownership estimates, and more – to help you decide if the 2018 F-150 is the right new car for you. This 2018 Ford F-150 review incorporates applicable research for all model years in this generation, which spans the 2015 through 2018 model years.

Why You Can Trust Us

U.S. News Best Cars has been ranking and reviewing vehicles since 2007, and our team has more than a combined 75 years of experience in the automotive industry. To maintain objectivity, we don't accept incentives or expensive gifts from car companies, and an outside team handles the ads on our site.

How Much Does the Ford F-150 Cost?

The Ford F-150 has a base price of $27,705, which is lower than most full-size trucks’ starting prices. However, that’s for the base trim, which has few features. If you want the F-150 for something other than a work truck, you’re talking about a starting price of $33,300 for the XLT trim.

There are several higher trims, and there are some big jumps in price. The popular Lariat trim starts at about $41,015, and the high-performance Raptor costs $50,115. For the highest trim in the lineup – the Limited – you’re looking at a starting price north of $60,000. That’s high, but there are other full-size trucks with similarly expensive top trims.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Ford dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Ford deals page.

Ford F-150 Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: Ford F-150 or Chevrolet Silverado 1500?

The Chevrolet Silverado 1500 gives you a choice of several powerful engines, ranging from a base V6 to a 6.2-liter V8. The Silverado can tow up to 12,500 pounds, which is still short of the F-150’s monstrous ability. Also, the Chevy slightly trails the Ford in fuel economy. Inside, the Silverado has a quiet and refined cabin, and higher trims are close to luxurious. Both rows of seats offer plenty of space and comfort, and the infotainment features are user friendly. Both of these trucks would be a great choice. The F-150 is just a little more well-rounded.

Which Is Better: Ford F-150 or Ram 1500?

The Ram 1500 is the least expensive truck in the class, and its upper trims also cost less than corresponding versions of the F-150. Even in its lower trims, the Ram's cabin is full of quality materials that give it one of the nicest interiors among its rivals. The Ford can tow up to 2,500 pounds more than the Ram, but the Ram delivers one of the most comfortable rides in the class. The Ram's optional turbodiesel engine is more fuel efficient than anything the F-150 offers, though Ford will introduce its own turbodiesel for the F-150 at a later date. Space for passengers is ample, and the Uconnect infotainment system is very easy to use. These two trucks bring different things to the table. Deciding on which one is better depends on your priorities.

Compare the F-150, Silverado, and Ram 1500 »

F-150 Performance

F-150 Engine: Give Yourself an EcoBoost

The F-150’s base engine is a 290-horsepower V6 that’s perfectly adequate. However, Ford offers two turbocharged V6s (known as EcoBoost engines in Ford’s parlance) that get comparable fuel economy but deliver more power and better acceleration. The larger twin-turbocharged EcoBoost engine – with 375 horsepower and a whopping 470 pound-feet of torque – is also the best engine for towing.

There's a 395-horsepower 5.0-liter V8 that delivers a great engine sound and good power, but the most powerful engine in the lineup belongs to the Raptor. It features a 450-horsepower, twin-turbo V6.

F-150 Gas Mileage: Highly Efficient (for a Truck)

The F-150 gets some of the best mpg ratings in the class. It earns 19 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway. Compared to the Chevy Silverado and Ram 1500, you’ll save about $200 per year in gas money by driving the F-150.

F-150 Ride and Handling: Impressive Agility

The F-150 maneuvers well for its size. It’s composed on winding roads and has accurate steering. Drivers have good visibility, which also helps maneuverability. The ride is pretty smooth, even with larger wheels, but some rivals have more cushioned rides.

F-150 Off-Road Performance

The F-150 offers four-wheel drive, and it’s a capable off-roader. It’s even better with the available off-road package, which adds a locking rear differential and an off-road-tuned suspension. Off-roading is also where the F-150 Raptor shines. It has plenty of power, and it adds features like beadlock wheels to improve its ability to handle any terrain.

F-150 Towing Capacity

After ceding ground to the GM trucks (Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra) last year, the 2018 F-150 sees an increased towing capacity – 13,200 pounds – that puts it back in front of the full-size truck class. It also has class-leading hauling abilities, with a max payload of nearly 3,300 pounds. In addition to outstanding capability, the F-150 offers useful features like Trailer Backup Assist and Dynamic Hitch Assist, which make it easy to hook up and maneuver a trailer.

Read more about performance »

F-150 Interior

How Many People Does the F-150 Seat?

The F-150 seats three to six people, depending on which cab you choose. The front seats provide a good driving position, and both rows (when applicable) have plenty of space for even tall adults to ride comfortably. The seats are also supportive, so you won’t tire out on long drives.

F-150 and Car Seats

SuperCab and SuperCrew models have two full sets of LATCH car-seat connectors. The lower anchors are easy to find and use. The tether anchors aren’t so easy to find, and there’s other hardware that could be confused with the anchor points. That’s typical of what you see in pickup trucks, however.

F-150 Interior Quality

The F-150’s interior is well-built and uses quality materials, but it feels about a half-step below rivals like the GMC Sierra and Ram 1500. Still, the higher trims border on luxury-vehicle quality thanks to premium features like massaging seats.

F-150 Cargo Space

There are three available bed lengths with the F-150: 5.5-foot, 6.5-foot, and 8-foot. The best choice depends on your needs, though you should note that not all beds are offered with every cabin style. There are plenty of available bed features, including an integrated tailgate step, in-bed LED lights, and a system of moveable tie-downs. There’s also a good amount of small-item storage in the cabin.

F-150 Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

The F-150 doesn’t have any notable infotainment features that come standard, but it offers a twin-panel moonroof, satellite radio, a 10-speaker Bang & Olufsen audio system, a Wi-Fi hot spot (SYNC Connect), MyKey, and two infotainment systems. The better of the two is SYNC 3 with enhanced voice recognition, an 8-inch touch screen, navigation, and Siri Eyes Free.

The SYNC 3 infotainment system provides a responsive touch screen and easy-to-understand menu layouts. There are also several connectivity features such as Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and – new for 2018 – a Wi-Fi hot spot that lets you connect up to 10 devices.

For more information, read What Is Apple CarPlay? and What Is Android Auto? Then, see the Best Cars With Apple CarPlay and Best Cars With Android Auto.

Read more about interior »

F-150 Reliability

Is the Ford F-150 Reliable?

The 2018 F-150 gets a three out of five predicted reliability rating from J.D. Power, which is average among all vehicles.

Ford F-150 Warranty

Ford covers the F-150 with a three-year/36,000-mile warranty and a five-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty. Most other full-size trucks have similar warranty terms.

Read more about reliability »

F-150 Safety

F-150 Crash Test Results

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the 2018 Ford F-150 the highest rating of Good in all five crash tests categories. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave SuperCrew models a five out of five overall rating, and it gave SuperCab and Regular cab models a four out of five overall rating.

F-150 Safety Features

Standard safety features in the F-150 include a rearview camera with Dynamic Hitch Assist. Available active safety features include a 360-degree camera system, rear parking sensors, lane keep assist, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, adaptive cruise control (updated for 2018 to feature stop-and-go technology), forward collision warning, active park assist, and pre-collision assist with pedestrian detection.

Read more about safety »

Which Ford F-150 Model Is Right for Me?

There is no shortage of F-150 trims – more than half a dozen in all. But you'll first need to decide which cab style, bed length, and engine you want, because not every trim is available in every configuration.

If you’re just buying a work truck and don’t want to spend too much, stick with the XL and XLT trims. If you want a luxurious but capable ride, the King Ranch, Platinum, and Limited trims are good choices. If you want an off-road beast, the Raptor is the clear choice. For many buyers, the Lariat is an excellent, well-rounded choice. It’s available with all three bed lengths, two different cabs, and three different engines, and it comes with a respectable assortment of features.

Ford F-150 XL and Ford F-150 XLT

The XL and XLT are the two lowest trims, and they’re the only trims available with all three cabs and all three bed lengths. Both models feature the base V6 engine and a six-speed automatic transmission. The XL has a base price of $27,705, and the XLT starts at $33,300.

Aside from the rearview camera with Dynamic Hitch Assist, the XL has no notable features, and it’s really only suitable as a work truck. The XLT adds power windows and locks, a USB port, smartphone app integration, MyKey, and the SYNC infotainment system.

Ford F-150 Lariat

The F-150 Lariat has a starting price of $41,015. It comes standard with the smaller EcoBoost engine, a 10-speed automatic transmission, leather upholstery, power-adjustable heated and ventilated front seats, satellite radio, and the SYNC 3 infotainment system.

Ford F-150 Raptor

The Raptor starts at $50,115 and features the most powerful engine in the F-150 lineup: a 450-horsepower, turbocharged V6. It also features a number of performance- and off-road-related standard features like four-wheel drive, an off-road racing suspension, and a locking rear differential.

Ford F-150 King Ranch

The King Ranch trim is the point where the F-150 starts to feel like more of a luxury car than a truck. It has a starting price of $51,930 and comes standard with a V8 engine, a Bang & Olufsen audio system, a voice-activated touch-screen navigation system, heated rear seats, and a heated steering wheel.

Ford F-150 Platinum

The Platinum trim starts at $54,485 and builds on the King Ranch by adding standard wood trim accents, a Wi-Fi hot spot, power-deployable running boards, blind spot monitoring, and rear cross traffic alert.

Ford F-150 Limited

The top-of-the-line Limited is the most upscale trim, and it has a starting price of $60,850. It comes standard with the larger EcoBoost V6 engine, a twin-panel moonroof, a 360-degree camera, pre-collision assist with pedestrian detection, and just about every other feature that you can get in an F-150.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Ford dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Ford deals page.

See 2018 Ford F-150 specs and trims »

The Final Call

The 2018 Ford F-150 is one of our highest-ranking full-size pickup trucks. It’s the most capable truck in the class, and it delivers that ability without sacrificing efficiency. It also has a well-built cabin and offers plenty of tech and driver assistance features. If you’re looking for a new truck, the F-150 is a great choice.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

  • "With hundreds of available configurations, you'll have an easy time finding a 2018 Ford F-150 that meets your needs. Overall it's a comprehensive package that makes the F-150 one of our favorite trucks on the road." -- Edmunds
  • "With its class-exclusive aluminum body and turbocharged EcoBoost engines, the F-150 has advanced full-size pickup design well beyond what its competitors are doing." -- Kelley Blue Book (2017)
  • "Considering the F-150 is the crown jewel of the Ford lineup and its most successful product, we doubt they'd launch it without full confidence in its reliability. And as far as the driving experience, prepare to be surprised. All of our expectations were exceeded behind the wheel. There are some real, tangible benefits to the 10-speed in real world use." -- Truck Trend (2017)
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