Vehicle Overview
A new 6.0-liter Power Stroke turbo-diesel engine that cranks out 325 horsepower and 560 pounds-feet of torque will be available for heavy-duty full-size pickups early in 2003. When that engine becomes available, it will mate with a new five-speed TorqShift automatic transmission.

A new FX4 Off-Road Package is available for the 2003 model year. Crew Cab models will soon be equipped with a King Ranch option group and an optional power moonroof.

The F-250 Super Duty pickups come in regular-cab, SuperCab and Crew Cab forms, and in XL, XLT and Lariat trim levels. The F-Series Super Duty models are the hard-hauling brutes in Ford’s full-size pickup line. Based on the regular, light-duty F-150 series, the Super Duty has different styling, roomier interiors, and stronger chassis and engines. The F-250 Super Duty has a three-quarter-ton rating, while the F-350 Super Duty models have a one-ton rating.

All Super Duty models have a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of more than 8,500 pounds. For that reason, they are exempt from certain federal safety requirements that lighter-duty trucks and cars must meet.

Exterior
The styling differences between Ford’s light-duty F-150 and the Super Duty models are most evident up front, where a massive grille dominates the Super Duty’s nose. Super Duty pickups come in three forms: regular cab; four-door SuperCab, which have two conventional front doors and two smaller rear-opening back doors; and four-door Crew Cab, which are equipped with conventional front-hinged doors.

The F-250 Super Duty’s wheelbases range from 137 inches on regular-cab models to 172.4 inches on the Crew Cab dualie. Regular-cab pickups have an 8-foot cargo bed and measure 226.6 inches long overall, while the SuperCab models are equipped with either a 6.75- or 8-foot bed and have an overall length of 231.4 or 247.6 inches. Either bed can be installed on the four-door Crew Cab, which measures 245.8 or 262 inches long overall. When powered with the diesel engine, an F-250 Super Duty truck can tow as much as 12,500 pounds.

Interior
Regular-cab models seat either two or three occupants. Cloth upholstery, leather captain’s chairs and a power driver’s seat are available. The split, front bench seat includes a folding center armrest that can stow a laptop computer. A folding, three-place rear bench seat goes into the SuperCab and Crew Cab models.

Under the Hood
Ford’s standard 5.4-liter Triton V-8 engine produces 260 hp. For additional strength, the 6.8-liter V-10 generates 310 hp and 425 pounds-feet of torque. Buyers who need the highest level of power may choose the Power Stroke 7.3-liter turbo-diesel V-8, which yields either 250 hp and 525 pounds-feet of torque with an automatic transmission or 275 hp and 520 pounds-feet with a manual gearbox. The new Power Stroke 6.0-liter turbo-diesel will deliver 325 hp and 560 pounds-feet of torque.

All models can be equipped with a six-speed-manual transmission or an optional four-speed automatic, but a five-speed automatic accompanies the new diesel engine. Super Duty pickups are available with two-wheel drive or four-wheel drive.

Safety
Dual front airbags are standard, and side-impact airbags are optional.

 
Reported by Jim Flammang  for cars.com
From the cars.com 2003 Buying Guide
Posted on 1/29/03