• Is Ford F250 Diesel Better Than a Ford F150 EcoBoost for Full-time RV Trailering? (Ask TFLtruck)


    2018 ford f-150 f-250 half-ton heavy duty truck trailer towing
    2018 Ford F-150

    Which truck is better for full-time RV trailering (conventional trailer: 5,800 lbs loaded)? Is it a heavy duty diesel or a half-ton pickup with a gas motor? Jeff is specifically asking about a choice between a Ford F-250 with the Power Stroke V8 and a Ford F-150 with a 2.7L EcoBoost V6.

    We recently received the following question from Jeff:

    I just discovered your youtube channel a couple of days ago and have been binge watching ever since. I will begin full time RV-ing in the next 2-3 years and will need a tow vehicle. The RV I’m favoring at the moment is a Rockwood Mini Lite 2109S (specs: 22-ft long / 8-ft wide trailer with a GVW of 5,800 lbs). I have no doubt whatsoever that a 3/4 ton diesel will outperform a 1/2 ton gas truck at this task. Moreover, I wasn’t really considering a 1/2 ton gas truck but changed my mind when I saw the F-150 with either of the EcoBoost V6 engines on your channel. I’m now reasonably convinced that an F-150 4×4 crew cab with even the 2.7L EcoBoost will provide a very positive towing experience with this trailer. I’m actually thinking a 3/4 ton diesel might be overkill.

    If an F-250 with the 6.7L diesel towing this trailer provides a towing experience score of “100” (perfect), what grade would you give the mentioned F-150 configuration? I’m not as concerned about points such as fuel economy, engine lifetime, etc. I’m more concerned about the actual tow performance when I’m driving, i.e. accelerating, braking, lane changing, stability, ride, etc. Thanks!  -Jeff

    Jeff, thank you for the question! Yes, you want a large and stable truck for a confident towing experience. This means that a crew cab 4×4 is a great choice. The longer wheelbase makes the truck a better towing platform and the 4×4 system adds some heft to the truck along with better traction.

    We towed a 5,600 lbs horse trailer with nearly every truck on the market in 2015, and I can tell you that an F-250 Diesel would be a bit of overkill for a 5,800 lbs trailer. If you set up the hitch correctly for a level truck and trailer combination, then an HD Diesel truck with this trailer in tow will behave as if the trailer is not even there. If the trailer brakes are working properly, braking performance would also be solid.

    Ford rates a 2018 Ford F-150 crew cab 4×4 with the 2.7L EcoBoost and a 3.73 rear axle ratio at 8,000 lbs of maximum towing capacity. If an F-250 had a “100” point score, then I would put the F-150 2.7L EcoBoost somewhere between “85-95” points because the acceleration/braking would be affected slightly due to the trailer weight.  We always recommend a Weight Distributing Hitch (WDH) for additional stability.

    For full-time RV trailering with a trailer you are considering, I would go for an F-150 with a 5.0L V8 or a 3.5L EcoBoost V6 because these power choices provide towing rating of over 10,000 lbs. This should give you the extra margin, in case you decide on a slightly heavier trailer.  If you decide to tow much over 8,000 lbs, then a HD 3/4-ton truck will make more sense.

    Here is a F-250 Diesel with 12,500 lbs behind it on our highway MPG loop.

    Here is a 2017 Ford F-150 with the 3.5L EcoBoost V6 and the 10-speed automatic and 7,000 lbs in tow.


    Andre Smirnov
    Andre Smirnov
    Andre Smirnov is an Automotive Enthusiast, Producer, Reviewer, Videographer, Writer, Software Engineer, Husband, Father, and Friend.

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    123 thoughts on “Is Ford F250 Diesel Better Than a Ford F150 EcoBoost for Full-time RV Trailering? (Ask TFLtruck)

    1. I would agree with going the 5.0L or 3.5L route as mentioned. The weight always seems like it will be low until you put it on a scale loaded up. Most everyone is surprised on how much more weight there is. Give yourself that extra cushion and go with the bigger engine on the F150. I see no reason going 250. However based on your money source and what you plan on doing, you may find yourself going to a bigger travel trailer. Something to consider especially since your going to go full time.

    2. “I’m not as concerned about points such as fuel economy, engine lifetime, etc. ”

      Yeah, any Ford is perfect for you.

      “I’m more concerned about the actual tow performance when I’m driving, i.e. accelerating, braking, lane changing, stability, ride, etc.”

      Then since you won’t be going for a couple of years, get the Chevy 6.2 with the 10 speed transmission.

      Or by then, you will have a choice of electric assisted torque pickups.

      1. Oh, you said you are going “full-timing”.

        Trust me, your wife won’t last in a 22 footer.

        Get the Chevy Duramax 2500.

        1. Funny, I’ve got a friend who bought a 17 L5P about 4 months ago and has had nothing but trouble with it and is considering trading it for a powerstroke. Another biddy odw mine just got rid of his 16 GMC LML, traded on a Stroker. Said the engine was fine but the rest of the truck was a cheap rattle trap.
          Weird huh? Real world experiences compared to fanboy spouted crap above.

            1. Never had a issue with power stroke. Great power, reliable and cutting edge tech.
              To top it off the super dutys are currently the best looking in my opinion. Rams being second. I just can’t get the square wheel well GM. Just looks terrible…

          1. Made up comments and issues to try and prove a point that you can’t can’t intelligently argue.

            “My buddy had a xxx and it sucked. Super unreliable and stuff. Ford rulz!”

      2. Get a 5th wheel if you are going to be full time. You can pick up a brand new one for about the same price as a trailer if you buy it right (30k). And go with the HD.

        If you are going to pull regularly then you are better off keeping your load to 1/2 the vehicles max towing. This will allow plenty of room for supplies, ensure a stable tow and provide for the longevity.

        If you are getting a used truck go Chevy pre-2017 they were way quieter and smoother than the F250 diesels.

        If you’re going new get the Ford (though it’s only a grand more to get the 350 and the rides the same so you might as well go all in).

        If you want fuel economy go with the Dodge.

    3. I dont know why TFL or Jimmy Johns are offering the 5.0 V8. It is not a boosted motor and therefore has a short peak torque curve at high rpms. Gas motors like in the Sante Fe with peak torque at 1450RPM in a 2.0 that is ruler flat up to 3500RPM and Kia now offers a 2.0 with 260ft-lbs at 1350rpm have the low end torque that now outperforms the turbo diesel low end torque and the gas turbo has a better torque curve and superior HP. If they built a 6.7L gas turbo then that motor could walk 30,000Lbs up the gauntlet in under 8 minutes unlike our current diesels that cant get it up in the time allotted. The eco boost gas motors have low end torque that is almost ruler flat throughout a wide rpm range and this is what gives a pleasurable towing experience. The 3.5 also outweighs the 5.0 and the 2.7 and as stated you want that extra weight when towing for stability so the trailer dose not control and take over the truck. You can also get the 3:73 gears in the 3.5EB but that is a bare bones work truck, if you want any amenities you have to go to the 3:55 gears but nothing slows that motor down anyway. Far as I can fact check the Cummins motors (diesel) have peak torque that only briefly lasts in the rpm range but because it is such a large displacement it would work here and would be a better choice for pulling ALL the time, otherwise go for the 3.5EB and leave the 2.7 out of it. By the time you load the truck down and add a few items to the trailer you will be well over a comfortable experience for the 2.7EB

      1. My coworker bought the 5.0 cause he is convinced the Ecoboost torque curve was stupid and the 5.0 was much boarder. But then immediately after talks about how he loved towing with his diesel.

        How can you love a diesel, and talk about torque, and not love the ecoboost. It offers all the torque of a diesel and the power of a V8!

        I would put money down the my 2014 Ecoboost with an 87 octane towing tune puts down more torque than a tuned Ram ecodiesel across the entire RPM range too.

        1. Jay S, from the torque charts on the net you would be correct. The 3.5 gas turbo has more torque than the ecodiesel at 1500rpm and comes on strong and flat all the way to 5500rpm. The eco diesel does not build big torque until 2000rpm, peaks, starts to drop quickly from 420 to 350 as it hits 3500rpm and then drops like a bag of potatoes from the back of a delivery truck after 3500rpm while the gas EB is still making big torque all the way to 5500rpm. The non boosted gas motor although a V8 is a complete gutless wonder at 1500rpm making maybe 150ft lbs of torque. Without a turbo a gas motor cannot compete with the torque of a turbo diesel and it is the turbo that is required for pulling. This is why diesel got such a great name is because they always came with a turbo unlike gas motors which were scraping by with their superior HP, add a turbo to a gas motor and now you have a superior motor, they just need to turbo a V8 to silence the black Lambs in the diesel world.

          1. You know Rambro, I wonder if you really read or believe the crap that you post. The fact that your comparing an ecodiesel to an Ecoboost shows just how biased you are with completely oranges to apples comparisons. The Ecodiesel was not built to be a powerhouse, it was built AND tuned for fuel economy period. The Ecoboost engines were built to replace v8 gas motors which they do quite nicely or at least compete with. Your power example of a Hyundai output compared to diesels is laughable. Small car/crossover engines are built and tuned for fuel economy and daily driving. HD diesel engines are built and tuned for work. Why do you think you don’t see turbo gas engines in over the road trucks? Because diesel puts out more torque with better efficiency period end of story.
            I know your on a crusade against diesels because you claim they ruined your health. Whatever the case please quit spouting worthless crap like its fact, your lowering the collective IQ of this conversation.

            1. So Brewha, an F150 is not a work truck? Only HD Diesels are built to work while the Ecodiesel is meant for hyper milers. Like I said you Black sheep need to be silenced, your diesel fame to claim is over is over.

            2. But how much torque would the diesels put out without a turbo? I agree with Rambro- a big turbo gas engine would pump out ridiculous numbers at a huge discount in price compared to the big diesels. Also without the emissions systems that tend to have issues.

            3. All you have to do is look at the old GM 6.5L diesels from the early 90’s. They had both a turbo and non-turbo version. The non-turbo version made less power and torque then a 454 from the same time period.

              The ram ed was absolutely marketed as a utility motor, which also got good MPG. While it’s great at towing on flat ground and smaller climbs it falls short on the big ones.

              Over the road truck examples are dumb because those trucks are driving for 8+ hours every day under heavy loads. Every percent of efficiency gain results in a large dollar value for the owner. For the rest us that live in the real world and drive unloaded 1/2 tons maybe 20-30k miles a year, and only tow occasionally, that dollar value is small. On paper the ecodiesel mpg’s are nice and shinny and compelling but it doesn’t convert to much unless you drive a huge amount of miles.

              The ecoboost was designed to compete against V8’s by taking the fantastic low end of a turbo diesel and apply it to a gasoline motor, without the limited power band. There is no more arguement to be made for diesel’s advantage in performance on the low end anymore.

              I think that they should put an HD 5.0 ecoboost in at least the 3/4 ton trucks. The diesel kills the payload and the towing capacities don’t require 925 ftlbs. I think you would find a lot of people would be more willing to move up to a 3/4 instead of making a 1/2 ton work because they don’t have to choose between a less powerful gas motor or and outrageously expensive, overkill diesel.

          2. Just so you know,both over the road diesels and diesel cars and pickups,DID NOT always have turbos. Some diesels I drove had superchargers,which took a gutless pig,and made it a bit less gutless,but still an oinker.

            I don’t know this for sure,hopefully someone well versed in today’s turbos could answer this,but the ecoboosts have compound turbos. I think the small diesels available now would greatly benefit from these compound turbos. Or so I think..

            1. They don’t have compound turbos. That is one turbo feeding another. Ecoboost has 2 turbos feeding the same inter cooler. They are 2 small turbos to act as one larger one. Helps with quick spool up and still make decent HP. Compound turbos are in the diesel world and honestly I think a VGT turbo engine runs better. They use one turbo for quick spool up and the second for higher boost for power. But to me, they all seem like slugs off the line. The Ford 6.4 l had it and I wasn’t a fan

            2. Jimmy Johns – Technically a VGT is a single turbo but it can adjust the pitch of the turbine wheel to get greater or lesser boost at the same turbine rpm. It basically functions like having multiple turbos, a small one for quick spool (high pitch on vanes, low pressure but quick) and then a large turbo for top end power (low pitch on vanes and higher pressures)

            3. Daniel, that is why I like VGT turbos over compound turbos found in diesels like the maxxforce 7 (aka 6.4L) and other diesels like the DT466. They don’t seem to have the low end kick like diesels with a VGT turbo like what is found in the Ford 6.7L.

            4. Almost forgot, VGT turbos can be used for exhaust braking too. Don’t need the separate exhaust valve found downstream of the down pipe with compound turbo systems that I have seen.

            5. the typical VnT like in the Garrett turbos uses a teardrop shaped nozzles to basically change the A/R ratio of the turbine housing. With the nozzles closed, the cross sectional flow are is small so the exhaust gases flow at higher speed and strike the turbine wheel more perpendicular to the rotation. When the vanes open, it has more flow area so the gases slow and the angle flows more Parallel to the turbine blades.

              The problem with VNT turbos is they have no waste gate so they have no way to bypass exhaust gas around the turbine. Eventually you flow to much gas and it start choking up the turbine and backpressures skyrocket.

      2. It will likely get better mileage and last longer-though the he stated that he did not care about either of those things. That being the case, the 3.5EB is likely to offer a more satisfactory towing experience.

      3. I have a 3.5 EB with 3.73 gears and it has BOTH the FX4 off road package AND the luxury package. Think “FX4 Platinum” It has color painted bumpers, full leather with every amenity of the platinum (sunroof, power slide window, heated power folding mirrors, Heated and cooled power memory seats, my key, full 8″ DVD sync w/ hard drive and sony sound, 20″ upgraded blacked out wheels, and blacked out ext trim) but none of the silver exterior trim or wood grain interior panel. All around great truck, and I had to hunt for one with these options, and 3.5 AND a 3.73 gear since I pull a travel trailer with it. Only thing it didn’t come with….. tow mirrors!!

    4. I wouldn’t take the 2.7 off the table. It appears to be under-rated in hp/tq and it’s bolted to the exact same frame, transmission, axle, etc as it’s big brother. Just make sure you get the tow package and it should serve you just fine.

      1. Its not on the same axles as far as I know. This is why it only has a 6500 lb GVWR while a 3.5 or 5.0 truck has a 7000 lb GVWR. You have to get the 2.7 Payload Package to get the 9.75″ axle and extra payload but then all of the options and trim pacakages become unavailable.

          1. The axle case is the same across all f150’s, it’s the axle shafts(max payload package) and springs that change the GVWR.

            1. The standard 3.5 and 5.0 come with a 9.75″ while a standard 2.7 comes with the 8.8″. If you get the 2.7 payload it gives you the same 9.75″.

              The HD payload package on the 5.0 and 3.5 trucks has a heavier duty 9.75″

      2. Full time trailering would be working that engine pretty hard. It would be running pretty high boost a lot of the time, so mileage may be less then that of the other two larger engines.

    5. If a Ford has your interest,than build and order the 2018 Ford F-150 Crewcab,3.5L Ecoboost,mated to the 10 speed automatic,with the following options 1) Heavy Trailer package. 2) XLT Premium package 3) XLT Value package. 4) *Trailer tow package. 5) Nav package,with 8 inch productive screen display,with EVIC display. 6) 3:55 Locking Diff .7) 36 gallon extended range tank.8) Bucket seat’s with console.Even if you think gas mileage is not a factor it is a big factor when shopping for the cheapest fuel on interstates this will save you money. All these options will help you considerably while towing.*Note this option is different than the Heavy Tow package,this has to do with a class 4 hitch system mounted to the frame.By ordering it this way it will allow like some here have stated if you are full-timing you it will get really small that trailer and you will want to move up to at least a 29-30 foot trailer dual axle.This 2018 Ford F-150 rear frame support has been beef up in thickness,axle shaft size,spring package as well.So you will beable to move up without buying a new truck,and to be honest the price difference won’t be to much,concidering the truck you will have.

    6. All I can say is too much truck is always better. I have a 32ft 9300lb fifth wheel rv. I have a 2016 Supercrew 4×4 with the 157″ wheelbase, and a 1999 Super Duty Superman long box 158″ wheelbase. And they pull the RV. Everyone that has been in both trucks while pulling say F250 is much better. Even though the 7.3 is 125hp less than the 3.5 EcoBoost, it tows the same speeds for less money(more MPG), and the stability is night and day different.

      1. Do you have the HD payload package on the F150 or are you hooking up a 9300 lb 5th wheel to a regular F150?

        Thats a huge trailer for an F150. We are talking about a 5800 lb 22 ft.

    7. 3/4 ton diesel is massive overkill here. Save your money. An F250 with the 6.2 gas motor would handle this easily. If you go with an F150, I would suggest either the 2.7 or 3.5 Ecoboost motors. The 5.0 would be fine too, but the 2.7 and 3.5 will pull easier out on the highway, especially if you are at high altitude. If you end up with the F150, your rear suspension won’t be as beefy so spend some of the money you saved by not buying a 3/4 ton diesel on a high quality weight distribution hitch like the ProPride.

    8. My advice (for what it is worth) is look at two extremely important factors. #1. The cost of truck A vs Truck B. #2. The cost of the fuel for the trucks as well as the fuel economy.

    9. If it has to be a ford take a f250 with 6.2,it will be more stable in any situation over f150.I would recommend Gm 2500hd with 6.0 for a proven powertrain since 1999..imo

      1. Actually it is not the same powertrain since 1999. The gas powertrain has been updated over the years like all other power trains.

        1. JJ 6.0 has been tweaked but very much the same and transmission just 2 more gears overall same.I have 1999 with 6.0 and 4 speed and a 2007 with 6.0 and auto very dependable.

          1. Like I said, there are changes since 1999. Engine has gone through updates. Transmission is all new. Brakes are different.

    10. I have an F-150 with a 3.5 EcoBoost 2014 I pull a 35 foot camper dry weight 7000 pounds that truck will outperform anything out there besides a diesel uphill straightaways the F150 EcoBoost is the way to go too many things in my day and by far the F150 with the 3.5 EcoBoost outperforms all of them

      1. I am towing a smaller 24′ 5500 GVWR trailer with my 2014 Ecoboost and its straight as an arrow and the truck just turns into the incredible hulk as soon as the trailer hooks up. The truck feels strong empty, but you put a load on it and its a different truck.

        1. Also, the 87 octane tow tune from 5Star is fantastic. They tune the motor but also adjust shifting patterns and what not and really have it dialed in perfectly.

          I have tried a couple of other towing tunes from other folks and they just are not as refined. They have the power but not the refined transmission tuning.

    11. I would say the 2.7 is an excellent choice for a trailer that sized. That said, to get a reasonable payload capacity with the 2.7 trucks you must get the 2.7 Payload Package. A normal 2.7 crew cab 4×4 is only a 6500 lb GVWR and with the payload package it is 6900 lbs.

      The problem with gettting the 2.7 payload package is that it REALLY limits options. No 36 gallon fuel tank, and no trim packages on the XLT.

      A 3.5 or 5.0 crew cab will have a 7000 lb GVWR by default and no restrictions on options.

    12. Remember, the 2.7 Ecoboost to this day has the fastest time up the IKE with a 7700 lb trailer so its a beast just like the 3.5. It has the power to tow a big trailer.

      The problem is for neuters it on the payload and towing capacities for no apparent reason other than to push people into the 3.5.

    13. Full timing with a spouse in a 21 foot trailer is near impossible in my opinion. Even as a single individual.
      It will be fine the first trip or two. But each trip will add additional items to the cargo.

      You need to be able to store food and supplies for at least 3 days or you will think you are spending most of your time at the shopping center.

      Just think, spending the time to stop at a laundromat every 3/4/5/6 days to do a few half loads of cloths may start to feel like a waste of time.

      How many times do you expect to use your towels, wash cloths and sheets.

      Where will you store your cleaning supplies and equipment.

      How about shovels, rakes, chain saw generator. I consider all those things necessities for a nice mountain campground. Remember that because of tree pests many sites don’t want you to haul in fire wood.

      For short term trips these things are fine in your trailer/truck shell. But you said full time.

      If I were full timing I’d be doing a lot of dry camping. Not just to save money. But to be able to experience new settings. For me, full timing, bouncing from the one of the same RV sites to another over and over again defeats the purpose of full timing. I want to see new things.
      I could just go to a spot and take a video then stay at home and watch it over and over I suppose.
      A camper shell to store extra items in will work. But bouncining from the trailer to the shell to get needed items will get tiresome for a full timer.

      21 foot is just to small for full timing.

      But if you really want to see North America. You should stay at 26 feet or below.
      Above that you will find you can’t get into many mountain sites. And because most mountain sites have a 2 week stay limit. Full timers will need a wide selection of sites.

      So, load up a 26 footer and you could still use a properly optioned half ton tt3.5.

      But by the time you add all the necessary items the 1/2 ton is going to cost the same if not more than a similar 3/4 ton truck.
      And the 3/4 ton will pull with more confidence.

      I have camped at the beach enough to not get that excited to return except for special events. So my opinions ate based on a lot of mountain camping.

      Also:

      Towing in California is a max speed limit of 55 mph.

      National Park and a great deal of state park roads have a 45 mph speed limit. Those speeds don’t require a lot of torque or HP. But a selection of gearing is helpful. Speeds below 55 mph will not require 8,9, or 10 speeds though. Rear differential selection is important though.

      If you find yourself speeding through areas a lot.
      You are likely traveling the same scenery over and over again. That’s not really the point of full timing.

      Of course you maybe planning on traveling and visiting loved ones a lot. Remember, you can not pack a lot of changes of cloths in a 21 foot trailer.

      Make sure that’s all the trailer you want. If so just about any medium or full size truck has the specs for that trailer, if the truck is optioned properly.

      A weight distribution trailer hitch is necessary for a full timer. I cant think of anywhere I’ve been west of the Mississippi that I haven’t experienced 45 mph or greater winds. And I have taken just about every route possible between southern Calliforia and North Dakota. And have traveled a lot east of the Mississippi.

      Happy Camping.

      1. I tried my hand at full timing with a new 32 ft. class A motorhome. Just my wife and I. We did this for about 2 years and bought a house and sold the MH.

        My point: 19ft will have you and your wife totally insane in a year or less. Fulltiming has a certain romance about it,but it wears quickly.

        In my case,I desperately needed my shop. I needed to be with my tools,my music and amps,and my lift.

        If I were you,buy the new truck,but buy a bit larger used travel trailer.That way you won’t be taking a huge depreciation hit if you and your wife decide to settle down again.

      2. exactly the reasons my father is getting a 26 foot travel ttailer. He started looking in the 21-22 range, but just damn to small

      3. I tow a 25′ travel trailer, weight is around 6500# all loaded up. I initially towed it with an ’09 Ram Hemi 1500- it was fine on straightaways, but here in Colorado, most of our towing is to the high mountain passes. The Ram never really felt comfortable at that task. I sold it, and bought a GMC Sierra 2500 HD Duramax, and am so glad I did! It tows the trailer with ease over any mountain pass, plus has the engine braking on steep downhills, which I really have come to like. Our last trip from the Pueblo area to Montrose and back averaged 13.5 mpg. fuel mileage. The truck now has nearly 15K miles on it, and the mileage has steadily, and slightly, increased.
        My suggestion, based upon experience, is that if you intend to tow in high mountains, a 2500 class diesel is THE way to go!

    14. I have a 2016 supercrew fx4 with 2.7l and 3.73 with tow package. I also have a Rockwood Minilite 2509s. It is about 26′ so I am as close to and apples to apples comparison you will find. Total estimated weight I traveled with was probably about 6500 trailered including stuff in the pickup bed. I use a pro Blue OX weight distributing hitch with 1000lb springs.

      I have towed around 1500 miles on a few trips. The truck pulls the trailer with out much fuss and stops smoothly. I live in Florida but did take it to smokey Mountain np and surrounding blue ridge areas along with some steep grades near Devils fork SP. It handeled just fine all around. Power was never a concern. I took it down Approx 7 mile long 9 percent grade road as well using tow/haul, manual gear selection, it performed very good with occasional breaking. Brake fade was never noticed. The only thing I was slightly worried about was trans temp. At a few points going g uphill on pretty steep grades I was about 220 degrees, but that quickly came down once things somewhat level out.

      That all being said, the truck is absolutely more than capable. I average around 8.5-9mpg when towing at speeds of 68mph, and slightly better mpg at 60mph…but who has time?

      I would not trade the 2.7l for a 5.0 at all, and when not towing I would not trade the 2.7 for the 3.5l because it scoots plenty fast and I get about 21.5mpg. For a big, fast truck that can pull a trailer like mine…. I will take that mpg all day long.

    15. The load in question does not warrant a diesel, but it is unquestionable that the Super Duty platform is more stable. The F-150 *is* stable, but it is lighter and has softer springs. Better unloaded ride, for sure…but a little more squishy when towing compared to an SD.

      I find the Ford gas turbo engines use massive amounts of fuel when pulling. They have lots of pulling power…but they use lots of fuel. A naturally-aspirated V8 would probably do better on fuel, although it wouldn’t pull as well.

      The 2.7L is surprisingly stout. It does not feel really any different than a 3.5L EB.

    16. Gas is the way to go according to all the self proclaimed experts.
      That’s why all of the full time hauling semi’s on the highway are gasoline powered!
      Wait, what…?

      1. Jay M, you are talking on an old format where diesels were and are still rolling coal. A clean diesel cannot outperform a turbo gas motor litre for litre, in fact the turbo gas motor is proving to have even better low end torque on a wider rpm range, but yes you can still save fuel with a diesel over a gas motor but it will not outperform a turbo gas motor litre for litre in any circumstance except fuel mileage. For many of us who don’t care, we want the better motor over fuel economy. The larger 3.0 ecodiesel in the Ram over the 2.7EB F150 is a complete dog compared to the 2.7EB turbo gas motor and barely beats it at the pump.

        1. Rambro, your comments are not totally accurate. There is a lot more going on when you compare a diesel engine in an HD pickup and a turbo gas engine is a half-ton pickup.

          1.) The diesel engine still will produce more torque. I believe the top-performing gas engine (turbo or not) currently produced is the Ford 3.5L H.O. at 510lb-ft. Sure, divide engine output by size the the little EcoBoost packs more torque per liter of displacement than even the 6.7L Powerstroke. That doesn’t make it more efficient necessarily. Remember, the larger the engine and the heavier duty the components, the more resistance there is. If we had a gas turbo 6.7L V8…it might not produce 925lb-ft at all.

          2.) Diesels still produce torque at a lower range. Looking at the 6.6L Duramax and 6.7L Ford and Cummins engines, all three produce peak torque between 1600-1800RPM. The 3.5L H.O. EcoBoost produces peak torque at twice that number…3500RPM. Additionally, diesels produce peak horsepower at 2800RPM. The EcoBoost makes its peak power at 5,000RPM.

          3.) Lower RPM peaks, plus much heavier duty engine construction make the diesel engine likely to last longer than a gas engine for heavy hauling and lots of miles. The HD pickup diesels all use gear-driven camshafts and high pressure fuel pumps and pushrod-operated valves. Turbo gas engines use timing chains, cam-lobe operated high pressure pumps, and cam-operated valves.

        2. Not sure where you are getting your information concerning turbo gas engines producing better low end torque than a diesel. True, they can produce a lot but a comparable diesel engine tuned for the same application is capable of producing more low end torque than a gas engine-it’s the nature of the beast. You comparisons are pitting different engines tuned for different applications-apples to oranges.
          Turbo gas engines are indeed incredible and work very well when power needs are low most of the time but high power output is desired every once in a while-which accurately describes the duty cycle of most pickup trucks.
          The efficiency of a engine drops substantially when under high boost-it requires a large amount of power to pack more air into that engine. When the application calls for high output most of the time (like full time towing) a large, naturally aspirated gas engine or a diesel will out perform in terms of fuel economy and longevity every time.
          From what I have seen the ecodiesel handily beats the 2.7EB (which I drove-very peppy engine, impressive) in terms of FE-28ish compared to 21ish-that a pretty big difference!

    17. LMAO…
      I’m surprised nobody mentioned this so far,so I will. Ya’ll know that ford is coming out with the 3.0L Lion diesel for the f150.

      So my XPURT ;}> opinion is,wait for the small diesel.That way you can tow a bigger TT,with slideouts etc.

      1. Lohchief, I would like to know why Ford is waiting so long to release the numbers on the Lion. I don’t think it will compete well with their Turbo gas motors, maybe we will see those turbos you talk of. Ram could not defeat the 2.7EB. Their 3.0 ecodiesel barely outperforms the mpg of the 2.7 and has a worse torque curve then the turbo gas motor only edging it out briefly at 2000rpm with pathetic HP numbers to back the torque up in order to get it up to speed. Will Ford be able to defeat their own gas turbo motor and remain legal. I doubt it.

        1. Rambro, I tend to agree. The Lion will likely be a good engine but I venture to say the only benefit it will have over the ecoboost engines is fuel economy. I have my doubts it will perform as good as the ecoboost engines. But it is a diesel option some are looking for.

        2. I think ford is just waiting to release those numbers at the Detroit auto show to try to steal some of GM and Ram’s thunder when they unveil their new half tons.

    18. GET THE 3.5tt better resale, lots more power stronger axles and frame on 18 with 3.5 skip the diesel lots more money to buy and maintain will take a long time to recoup money on diesel and they r just plain slow and don’t pull like the ecoboost will

    19. I have a 2015 f150 2.7l and running my 93 octane tune it produces almost 500lb ft of torque so suffice it to say with a simple tune that 2.7 will do the job. Most people don’t want to risk warranty by tuning their new truck therefore I would recommend he go with the 3.5l Ecoboost. I would NOT recommend the 5.0l. if this guy is going to be full time rv’ing then surely he will be towing through some mountains and turbo engines blow away their naturally aspirated counterparts at altitude.

    20. Jeef
      If your choice is between an f250 with a 6.7 and an f150 with the 2.7. My answer is simple if you are going to be towing “full time”, you need a 3/4 ton. I would suggest you re-read, 2 or 3 times, Buddy’s post above. It is just chuck full of facts that make a lot of sense and sound like they come from someone with a great deal of personal knowledge.

    21. Going down the same road and once you start looking at the payload numbers then I can’t see pulling a 6 or 7 thousand pd TT with the F150. I was think the F150, but being limited to max 2600 lbs payload worries me along with just the 1/2 ton weight up and down some mountain Terran. So I’m going with the F250 crew 4*4. 6 3/4 bed but I think the 6.2 will do me just fine. That gives 3400 lbs of payload and plenty of truck too. I have a feeling that like some people here say. I will want a bigger trailer after awhile.

      1. Pete
        I run a 2013 f350 dually with the 4.30 gears. My max loaded trailer weight about 11,000 lbs. And the truck pulls fine and takes off from a stop effortlessly. So I think your choice of a f250 6.2 would do the job. But you want those 4.30 gears. Check out the ford truck enthusiasts towing forum. You’ll see that everyone with the 4.30’s likes the way the truck pulls. While most owners that bought their truck with the 3.73’s, wish they had bought the 4.30’s instead. Good luck with your purchase.

          1. If a don’t reset it for a month or so it seems to settle in to about 14.8 mpg on the lie o meter. I have never done the calculation by hand with this truck. Going out of state last week for a trailer load of pumpkins , gourds, squash etc. for the garden center I zeroed it out and got 11.1 mpg. 60 miles to the farm pulling the empty wells cargo trailer (4400 lbs.) And returning 60 miles with about 11,000 lbs. (Trailer plus load). All secondary roads 40-50 mph very hilly and curvy roads. Just for comparison my 1996 dodge 3500 dually with 4.11 gears averaged 12.5 mpg over the 17 years I owned it. All hand calculated.

        1. Yes I forgot to mention that. I did read them and some good YouTube towing videos. That is one of the reasons that I didn’t pick up a 2017 yet. Couldn’t find one with the 4.30. Everything had 3.73’s. And usually some options that I don’t really want. So I’m thinking that I’m going to just order a 2018 the way I want it in the Spring. Thank you.

      2. 3400 lbs of payload is impressive. My 2013 f250 6.2 crew 4×4 has 2715lb of payload. It’s a king ranch but doesn’t have a sunroof or tailgate step so it could be worse. It is significantly better than a diesel in respect to payload.

    22. “Ford rates a 2018 Ford F-150 crew cab 4×4 with the 2.7L EcoBoost and a 3.73 rear axle ratio at 8,000 lbs of maximum towing capacity. If an F-250 had a “100” point score, then I would put the F-150 2.7L EcoBoost somewhere between “85-95” points because the acceleration/braking would be affected slightly due to the trailer weight.”

      This is just wrong TFL. Completely wrong.
      It should be 100% as long as the truck is rated to tow that trailer weight.
      Otherwise you saying, that something is rotten in manufacturers ratings and they, include the ford are fudging towing numbers. There should be some headroom for towing numbers and not other way around.
      The truck should be designed to tow 100% at the limit, what ever specs says.

    23. As long as you’re not going through mountains or clear across the country, a midsize truck like my 4.0 Tacoma pulls a 5800lb 27 ft trailer just fine. With 600 lbs tongue load, I will break traction if I take off too fast. That demonstrates plenty of bottom end torque for moving heavy loads.

    24. I have a 2015 crewcab Ram 1500 Larime with the Ecodiesel 3.0. No issues pulling 4-5k lbs with power to spare. Just made a run from Tampa Fl to Asheville NC. Returned 16.7 mpg round trip towing 4 full dress motorcycles (bikes and trailer 5500lbs combined). That’s by doing the calculation, not the computer. She’s even done better mpg towing my 370Z due to it’s have less wind resistance vs. the bikes. If you’re towing nearly all the time, diesel 3/4 ton is the way to go.

      1. If you tow only a few times a year (3-4 times a year), like i do, the 1500 Ecodiesel is excellent. 23 mpg in town and 29 highway and the comfortable ride unloaded of a 1/2 ton. Still, if I towed a lot, 3/4 ton is the ticket.

    25. I have a 2012 3.5l F-150 XLT crew cab with a 6 1/2 foot bed with 3.73 Max tow package. The truck has pulled a 29 ft. 8,000 lb. Travel Trailer for over 20,000 miles. The truck pulls the trailer without any issues. I know have over 100,000 miles on the truck and it still pulls as strong as it did brand new.

      With that being said, if you ever planning on pulling a travel trailer over 29ft. would recommend at least a 3/4 ton pickup, as the wind will affect your tow vehicle more with a larger trailer, and the heavier truck will handle better in these conditions. Hope this helps.

      1. I don’t believe that. I was telling the same think to the ford horde, when Ford was going to introduce aluminium F150. I can still google this discussion. I have been told, that I am a troll. Ironic.

    26. Do the new half tons have have semi floating rear axles? My ford 9 inch is semi floating but with a pressed on tappered bearing that will retain the wheel if the axle breaks.

      Semi floating that use the C clip or something similar to retain the wheel/axle will lose the wheel if the axle breaks.

      I would not tow or haul any big loads with a C clip like semi floating rear axle. Your in for huge problems if a axle breaks and you lose a wheel. The trailer will push you were it wants you to go.

      I was riding in a Datsun pickup when the axle broke. The truck actually stayed level for a bit. We didn’t know it was off until it rolled passed us and almost struck an on coming car.

      But our laughter quickly ended. Any application of brakes or turning of the steering will upset the trucks balance.
      Luckily we were on a straight stretch of road without traffic.

      I can imagine some serious problems if we had been pulling a trailer or on a curve when the axle broke.

    27. I currently own a 2014 F-150 3.5 Ecoboost max tow supercrew long bed. I have pulled my 7,500 lb 33 ft long (toungue to bumper) for 8,000 + miles including nearly every sierra pass in California and everything in between Yellowstone, Rushmore, Flaming Gorge Utah and park city.

      Also, I spent the last week driving a 2017 f250 diesel. The F-250 obviously would out tow the f-150; however if i was offered a straight trade for my 2014 f-150 for the new 2017 f-250, i would not do it. The f-150 is plenty capable of pulling my trailer at 70 mph up any 7% grade up to 10k ft and have plenty of power left on tap. I don’t need anymore than that. The f-150 is like a Cadillac in ride comfort.

      The only real trade off’s i don’t like, is the engine braking on an ecoboost isn’t very good. You have to watch your speed downhill. However I have towed this trailer 8k and have roughly another 2k pulling anywhere between sea level and 10k, and with 50k on the engine I still have 80% brakes.

      The f-150 is far superior offroad (probably the 3k weight difference).

      With 3 kids a wife i’ve legitimately done 14-16 hour travel days of 750+ towing miles in the f-150 and am completely comfortable. I can at max ride 2 hours in the F-250.

      Depends if you want the bragging rights, or if you want a better all around tool. 5,800 lbs is nothing for a 3.5 ecoboost. Just remember your towing in a 1/2 ton. As long as you are aware you won’t have any problems. Good luck.

      1. 1. F150 rides like a Cadillac. 2. The ecoboost’s engine isn’t very good at engine braking. 3. You have to watch your speed downhill. 4. Just remember your towing in a 1/2 ton. These are all really good reasons: to buy the f250 for full time towing.

        1. Depends on what you.meam by full time towing. This guy is going to go rv-ing. Most full time rv people don’t tow full time. They stay at parks for weeks on end before gong elsewhere. Rinse, wash and repeat. So 90 percent of their time is nit towing and just driving around. The f150 is perfect for this due to fuel economy along with having plenty of balls to pull around <6000lbs.

          The only true consideration to this would be if you wanted option for 5th wheel in future, then f250/350 all the way. Otherwise save your money and gas. Go with f150

        2. Nothing wrong with the gas or diesel f250. As stated they obviously would tow better; however ” better” has a point of diminishing returns. Full time RVimg isn’t the same thing as full time trailering. The US is only a couple thousand miles wide and most folks have their trailers parked much more than they are physically towing them and spend a substantial portion of time touring without a trailer. So again the larger the vehichle the easier the towing on the vehichle, but maybe not the driver or passengers.

          So, yes, an F250 is going to tow better, but why stop there? I could tow with an F-450 that can tow 2x the f-250 ( I’ve bought 5 new ones in the last few years at work). But then again maybe I should tow with our dump truck because it’s rated at 80,000 lbs and it tows way better than an F-150, F-250 or F, 450. But wait maybe I should use our lowboy that is rated for a whopping 200,000 lbs to hall our big equipment because that tows better than all of them. Oh wait, that overkill because we are talking about a 5,800 lb trailer.

          Or as stated before pick what’s comfortable, and be happy that there are so many rad choices.

          There is nothing wrong with choosing a crazy comfortable 1/2 ton truck that is rated to tow 2x trailer weight just because there are Diesel options that are rated at 3, 4, 5 or nearly 40x the trailer weight the OP was asking.

          To each their own. Cheers.

    28. Yes, I should have said full time rv trailering not towing. But numbers 1-4 are “your words” not “mine” and I agree with them 100%. I didn’t mean any disrespect, before or now! Just pointing out the obvious truth in your words.

    29. I am surprised nobody else has said this in the previous 113 comments. As you will not require the vehicle for another 2-3 years you should not be buying anything until that time. I do not understand why you want the vehicle now. By the time you are ready there will be better options available and the advice given here may no longer be relevant. My advice is to wait until you need the truck.

    30. I use an ecodiesel. I have had Fords, the older Duramax, Tundra, no eco-boosts. The ecodiesel is smooth. No jarring shifts, no soft braking. To me it comes down to how much time you want to spend in the shop. The only trucks I’ve had that weren’t shop queens are the Tundra and the Ram. Durability to me is the ultimate money saver. If you actually want the truth about durability a Tundra never lies, or dies. That’s it, that’s all.

    31. I agree with durability being the ultimate factor. It would be nice if the manufacturers could focus on durability instead of the torque number of the week.

    32. How come Ford still can’t make a truck with body panels free of defects? You can see waves in the side of this thing. I’d be embarrassed to drive it.

    33. If pulling full time. I would buy a diesel 2500 no question about it. But I like to tow at least running the speed limit and more often then not slightly above it. Around here speed limits are 75mph on our interstates.

      I also hate getting pushed around by the trailer I towing.

      If going camping a half dozen times a year or really just occasional towing, I would at least consider a 1500 gas.

      Pulling 6k with a gas half ton truck is no big deal, that is if its an open trailer hauling a compact tractor, or something like that.

      But pulling tall, wide and enclosed trailers regardless of weight, is like pulling a sail into the wind, power,fuel mileage, and stability tend to really fall off drastically.

      I want the torque of a HD diesel, what ever brand you like best. They are all building pretty good trucks these days. There are things I really like and dislike about all of them.

      If your are set for opting to go with the half ton, I would recommend a sway brake, and weight distributing hitch. Another thing you can do to improve stability of a half ton truck when towing is swap out the 4 ply car tires for 10ply (LT)light truck tires. The reason being is the more ridged sidewall’s of a 10ply tire will provide significant stability improvements. Note: Ride quality(smoothness) and fuel mileage tends to suffer a bit with 10ply tires.

      also note all makes of 2500+ diesel trucks come standard with the 10 ply tires.

    34. At 6000 lbs there isn’t no reason to buy F-250 dsl. Trust me I’ve hauled every imaginable rv that was built with my v-10 f-250. Most dsls are over 8000$ option. That is a lot of coin to pull a travel trailer that isn’t over 6000 lb. Still even with 6.2 v-8 F-250 might be even over kill.

    35. The RAM / DODGE HEMI Eco Diesel engine has an “auto off / on” + 8 to 6 cylinder toggling features when in “Eco Mode”. The same HEMI Eco Diesel engine is in the Jeep Grand Cherokee as an option. Does the JGC have the same fuel saving features when it is in “Eco Mode”?

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