Ford Super Duty to Ram Heavy Duty: “You, one-up me? Ha!”

Sections: Chassis, Powertrain

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Ford F-450 SAE J2807 towing test press photo

According to the automaker, the Ford Super Duty is tops when it comes to towing in SAE J2807 testing. (Photo courtesy Ford Motor Company)

We told you a few days ago how Ram Heavy-Duty one-upped Ford Super Duty in terms of raw engine power and torque. Ford Super Duty will have none of that hot garbage, and is now bragging that its Ford F-450 has best-in-class towing according to SAE J2807 testing standards.

A press release from Ford said the Ford F-450 Class 3 pickup boasts the highest tow rating of any pickup truck in America, at 31,200 lbs. Furthermore, the release said Ford arrived at that tow rating by testing to the SAE J2807 standard, which seeks to create a sort of “measuring stick” by which consumers can more accurately judge how much weight a truck can actually handle safely. The Ford F-450’s 31,200-lb tow rating is “2,200 lbs greater than its closest competitor’s crew cab 4×4 pickup truck,” the release said. The release also said that configuration is the only way you’ll be able to buy an F-450 — so it’s not like Ford’s putting a piggish crew cab 4×4 up against their regular-cab, two-wheel drive unit to skew the numbers.

Ford Global Product Development Group Vice President Raj Nair said, “We leave no doubt with customers that the F-450 pickup truck has best-in-class towing of 31,200 pounds – whether tested using our own internal towing standards or SAE J2807.”

To give the Ford F-450 such a gargantuan, commercial driver license-requiring load capacity, Ford said it started with an F-350 frame and beefed it up, added a more capable suspension to the mix, and gave the truck commercial-grade 19.5-inch wheels and tires.

The Ford Super Duty second-generation 6.7-liter Powerstroke V8 diesel engine of course plays a huge role in achieving the Ford F-450’s tow rating, laying down 440 horsepower and 860 ft-lbs of torque, according to Ford.

Interestingly enough, Ford provided some insight into how their internal tow rating tests of Ford Super Duty models differed from SAE J2807:

Ford previously determined F-450 pickup towing capacity using rigorous internal testing standards exclusively. Now it has added SAE J2807 test procedures, reaffirming the F-450 pickup rating. F-450 passed the additional tests with 31,200 pounds in tow, just as it passed Ford internal tests.

SAE J2807 requires the vehicle to be loaded with about 400 pounds more weight than Ford’s internal test (two passengers instead of one, and base curb weight instead of minimum curb weight), but the weight addition has no effect on F-450 towing capacity. Using either standard, F-450 has best-in-class towing capacity of 31,200 pounds.

As a result of the J2807 test results, Ford is also increasing the F-450 pickup’s already best-in-class gross combined weight rating from 40,000 pounds to 40,400 pounds – topping the nearest competitor by 2,500 pounds

The press release also noted the Ford F-450’s payload rating actually went down 150 lbs, from 5,450 to 5300, as a result of the J2807 standardized testing. Truck owners who desire maximized payload capacity can specify less weight-adding niceties, however, according to Ford.

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