The F-150 was redesigned for 2021 with a mildly updated exterior, an upgraded cabin, the first-ever hybrid model, and more tech and innovative work-related features. Even with all that, the workhorse-tough F-150—long America’s best-selling vehicle—didn’t make a significant step forward overall, with only incremental improvements in ride comfort and handling agility.
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Ford F-150 Road Test

The F-150 was redesigned for 2021 with a mildly updated exterior, an upgraded cabin, the first-ever hybrid model, and more tech and innovative work-related features. Even with all that, the workhorse-tough F-150—long America’s best-selling vehicle—didn’t make a significant step forward overall, with only incremental improvements in ride comfort and handling agility.

We purchased a Lariat hybrid as well as a conventional XLT. Based on the 3.5-liter turbocharged V6 and with 430 horsepower on tap, the hybrid is the brawniest in the F-150 lineup (at least until the next-generation F-150 Raptor debuts), with what feels like a nearly bottomless amount of power along with an impressive 12,400-pound tow rating. We weren’t thrilled with the hybrid’s occasional rough downshifts, though. The non-hybrid XLT version with the popular 325-hp, 2.7-liter turbo V6 may not have the grunt of the hybrid or its towing capacity (rated at 7,700 pounds for our test truck), but it’s still a gem, with loads of low-end power and timely, smooth shifting from its 10-speed automatic transmission.

Although the aptly named “PowerBoost” hybrid 4WD is rated at 24 mpg combined by the EPA’s lab testing, our on-road testing resulted in 20 mpg overall. The gas-only version registered at 19 mpg overall, identical to our 2018 tested model.

Best Version to Get
Regardless of which cab size or bed length you go with, or whether you get rear- or four-wheel drive, at the very least we suggest buyers get the second-tier XLT trim. This brings a remote tailgate release, more comfortable seats with lumbar support adjustment, and the ability to opt for adaptive c...
Road Test Scores by Trim
crew cab Lariat V6-cyl 10-speed Automatic
crew cab XLT V6-cyl 10-speed Automatic
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