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Expert Reviews 1 of 2
By Jim Flammang
January 29, 2003
Vehicle Overview Ford has a potent new powertrain waiting for its heavy-duty one-ton pickup truck line. Available early in 2003, the new 6.0-liter Power Stroke turbo-diesel engine will deliver 325 horsepower and 560 pounds-feet of torque; it will team with a new five-speed TorqShift automatic transmission. Buyers have a choice of three other engines for the F-350 Super Duty, including a gasoline V-10 and a 7.3-liter turbo-diesel V-8.
The full-size F-350 Super Duty pickups come in regular-cab, SuperCab and Crew Cab configurations, and theyre offered in XL, XLT and Lariat trim levels. Interior and trim upgrades have been added to Fords rugged pickup line, and new option groups can be installed. A new FX4 Off-Road Package that includes skid plates, Ranch shock absorbers and a steering damper is available for 2003. During the 2003 model year, a King Ranch option group will become available for the Lariat Crew Cab models. An XLT Sport Package is available for Crew Cab and SuperCab pickups, and four additional colors will be offered for 2003.
Inboard armrests are now standard on the bucket seats of XL models, and the drivers side A-pillars feature a grab handle. A tailgate lock has been added to the XL models. Heated, telescoping trailer-tow mirrors with integrated turn signals will be offered as an option late in the 2003 model year. The same is true of a power moonroof, intended for installation on Crew Cab pickups. A vinyl 40/20/40-split front seat also becomes available for the XL trim. A reverse proximity sensor can be installed on pickups with the XLT Sport Package.
The F-350s front-end styling is similar to the F-250's; both display a bolder, more upright grille than the one on the half-ton F-150. Full-size F-350 Super Duty pickups are available on a choice of five wheelbases, with either a 6.75- or 8-foot cargo box. Regular-cab models have two doors, while the SuperCab and Crew Cab pickups have four doors. These pickups may have rear-wheel drive or four-wheel drive and single or dual rear wheels on each side.
Fords King Ranch option features lighted running boards, premium aluminum wheels, body-colored mirror housings and Arizona Beige wheel lip moldings. The XLT Sport Package includes chrome tubular step bars, body-colored exterior accents, a rear sliding window, fog lamps and privacy glass.
Either two or three occupants can fit into a regular-cab pickup, depending on the seat type. SuperCab models hold five or six passengers, while Crew Cab pickups can seat four to six.
The King Ranch option adds premium leather interior trim. The XLT Sport Package includes a leather-wrapped steering wheel and a 40/20/40-split front bench seat with twill cloth upholstery.
Under the Hood
A 260-hp, 5.4-liter V-8 serves as the standard F-350 Super Duty power plant. Optional engines include a 310-hp, 6.8-liter V-10 that produces 425 pounds-feet of torque, and a 7.3-liter turbo-diesel V-8 that generates 275 hp and 520 pounds-feet of torque with the manual shift or 250 hp and 525 pounds-feet of torque with the automatic gearbox.
Available later in the 2003 model year, the new 6.0-liter turbo-diesel V-8 will deliver 325 hp and 550 pounds-feet of torque and will team with a new five-speed-automatic transmission or a six-speed-manual gearbox. Other engines mate with the six-speed manual or a four-speed-automatic transmission. Towing capacities range from 6,800 to 14,200 pounds, depending on the engine, rear wheels and drive configuration.
Only the federally required front airbags are installed.