This is the part 1 of the 2017 Ford F250 XL extreme towing test on the Ike Gauntlet™. We loaded the Ford with nearly identical load as we did with the Ram 2500 HD (tested a few weeks back). The water tote strapped inside the 8-foot bed, and a flat-bed trailer with Mr Truck’s 2012 F-250 crew cab 4×4 in tow. The total weight is right at the maximum rating of 19,500 lbs.
We were heading west on our way up I-70 towards the Ike Gauntlet extreme towing test (Eisenhower/Johnson Memorial tunnels at the Continental Divide). We heard a loud bang as if we hit something with one of the tires. However, there was no obstacle, but we saw a few black bits flying behind us. Our first thought was a flat tire, then we saw a trail of fluid behind. We were in the right lane, and we were able to pull over to the side very quickly.
It was not a flat tire. A look under the hood revealed at broken cooling fan and a partially missing serpentine belt. The broken pieces of the fan punctured the radiator from the inside.
Nobody was hurt. We were able to quickly get a tow truck for the 2017 F250, and tow the trailer back to the HQ with Mr Truck’s older F-250.
Ford is working to fix the truck, and we are eager to get it back on the highway to complete the Ike Gauntlet.