My wife Rhonda and I were driving down the street the other day, came to a corner, and as I stopped I saw something that seemed----weird. It was a newer pickup truck---but one with only two doors, in one color, with black trim and steel wheels. Now, back in the day, that was a pickup truck. Today, they're called "work trucks", but not too long ago, they were all work trucks. You could make them a little fancier with colored vinyl seats or a two-tone paint job, but a truck was a truck.
And then they got nicer, and bigger, and grew a second set of doors, and got bigger again, and nicer again.
That trend accelerated in the past decade or two and now, apart from bare-bones work trucks, a pickup truck can be, and most often is, a luxury vehicle. Those Cadillacs and Imperials and Lincolns your grandparents and their friends drove? They're now Silverados and Sierras and RAMs and F-150s.
Want proof? I present the 2019 Ford F-150 4X4 SuperCrew Limited. If you've ever envied your neighbor's F-150 King Ranch, this is the answer. It's two levels of luxury above and beyond the King Ranch (there's also a Platinum trim between the two).
The 2019 Ford F-150 4X4 SuperCrew Limited has a base price---this is where it starts----of $70,560. After the options and $1,495 worth of destination and delivery charges were folded in, the window sticker read $74,575.
Back in January, I reviewed the 2019 GMC Sierra Denali 1500 4WD Crew Cab. Until this moment, it was the most expensive truck I'd driven, at an as-tested price (with options and delivery) of $67,735. The simply stunning 2019 RAM 1500 Longhorn Crew Cab 4x4 bottom-lined at $66,755.
When you consider that a base F-150 XL work truck is $28,155, this is one heckuva leap. So what's the 4X4 SuperCrew Limited got that makes it worth this kind of money?
The list of differences between the Limited and the base truck would be too long, so let's focus on the Limited versus the other two luxury trims---King Ranch (base price $52,390) and Platinum (base price $54,920). In fairness, those are two-wheel drive prices---which for the Limited would be $67,135. Adjust accordingly.
The first big difference between the three luxury F-150s is that the Limited has only one engine choice---the 3.5-liter V6 EcoBoost high output engine. Before you turn up your nose and insist that your truck---any real truck---needs to have a V8, this is the same engine that's under the hood of the F-150 Raptor, Ford's high-performance off-roader. It makes 450 horsepower and 510 pounds per foot of torque (the V8s in the Platinum and the King Ranch are 395 horsepower and 400 pounds per foot of torque) and still manages to deliver an EPA-estimated 17 miles per gallon in the city and 21 on the highway.
If you're a V8 purist, you need a test drive in a Limited or a Raptor. You'll never know the difference except at the gas pump.
You can get a lower-horsepower EcoBoost (375 horsepower) as an extra- cost option ($600) in both the King Ranch and the Platinum. But the only place other than the Raptor that you can get the 450-horsepower version is in the Limited. So that's probably $1,000 worth of the difference right there.
The Limited rides on 22-inch polished aluminum wheels, which are not an option for either the Platinum, which comes with 20s or the King Ranch, which gets 18s standard and offers 20s at extra cost.
Adaptive cruise with Stop-n-Go, an option on the others, is standard equipment on the Limited.
The Limited also gets treated to satin-chrome door and tailgate handles, a satin-finish grille, body-colored side mirrors and a standard twin-panel moonroof (optional on King Ranch and Platinum).
Inside, the Limited gets the full treatment, with leather and Limited badging everywhere you look.
A 360-degree camera with split view that's available as an option on the Platinum and King Ranch is standard on the Limited, as is a lane-keeping system. All three share heated and ventilated front seats, a 110-volt power inverter as well as the usual 12-volt DC power outlet and four USB outlets, plus a terrific Bang & Olufsen audio system with 1,000 watts of power and ten speakers.
So yeah, the math adds up. And our truck had a few extra-cost options on the way to that final price of $74,575:
- Ruby Red Metallic Tinted paint ($395).
- Tray-style floor liner ($160).
- Trailer towing package ($995).
- Tailgate step ($375).
- Toughbed spray-in bedliner ($595).
But is it worth it? Well, that's subjective. I loved it. It's fast, it's comfortable, it's got tons of room and hauling and towing capacity and a killer stereo. It checks all my boxes, but I'm not buying. If you want the most luxurious truck on your block with 450 horsepower under the hood, the Limited is pretty much the only game in town. And viewed as a luxury vehicle instead of a truck, 75 grand is a realistic number---as sobering a thought as that is.