The Ford F-150 makes a lot of hay about being the only compressed natural gas (CNG)-using half-ton truck in America, and now Ford is making a lot of noise about fleets who are ordering its CNG trucks in an effort to reduce fuel expense.
A press release from Ford said Ford CNG-prepped truck sales have increased by more than 250% since 2010, with cumulative sales expected to surpass 50,000 trucks by the end of this year. Ford said CNG-powered trucks lower costs and offer emissions benefits, and the alternative fuel is domestically produced. The automaker said operating costs can be as low as one-third that of conventional vehicles. Typically, Ford said, fuel savings cover the cost of conversion within three years.
Ford Fleet Sales Manager Jon Coleman said, “For fleet customers in Oklahoma, Texas and other states, a CNG F-150 really makes sense. The fuel is more affordable and widely available, and it reduces greenhouse gases and pollutants that cause smog.”
To that end, Ford’s press release said the state of Oklahoma and its agencies bought some 256 Ford F-150 CNG-ready trucks. Meanwhile, the city of Dallas, TX, ordered 65 CNG F-150s for its fleet.
When equipped with the 3.7-liter V6 engine, the Ford F-150 can be equipped with a gaseous fuel package that allows the engine to run on CNG or liquefied propane gas (LPG), Ford said. The prep package is a relatively low-cost option, at just $315, according to the release. The real cost comes when the customer has to take the truck to a fuel tank upfitter, however, with the release saying upfits cost approximately $6,000 to $9,500, depending on tank capacity.
CNG typically costs much less than gasoline, with Ford saying the national average runs at about $2.11 per gallon currently. It can run as low as $1 a gallon in some parts of the country, the release said. Regular unleaded gasoline runs at an average of $3.67 a gallon nationally, Ford said. Some states, including Oklahoma, offer incentives to those who purchase CNG-prepped vehicles, Ford noted.