Seven aftermarket performance companies will show off their ideas for a performance-oriented Ford F-150 next month, when the 2015 edition of the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) trade show opens in Las Vegas.
Ford says it’s the continuation of a trend that has seen the F-150 win SEMA’s “hottest truck” award more times than any other truck model, thanks in part to the model’s historically massive popularity in North America. Based on this year’s entries, that popularity hasn’t waned with the aluminum-bodied version introduced as a 2015 model.
We’ll start with our favourite of the bunch, created by MRT. This one tops our list for its pairing of Ford’s 3.5L EcoBoost V6 with a six-speed manual transmission. Naturally, MRT added a custom shifter (kind of a necessity given the lack of a stickshift in the F-150 lineup), along with a stainless steel exhaust, custom engine induction system, air suspension, Willwood brakes, custom rear suspension, 20-in wheels and tires, Sparco race seats and harnesses, integrated GPS-based track apps.
Well-known performance tuner Roush will be at SEMA with a supercharged F-150 (we assume the donor truck had the 5.0L V8) making 650 hp and 600 lb-ft of torque, lowered suspension, Power Stop drilled and slotted rotors, a vinyl body wrap, and a custom leather interior with heated and cooled seats.
Forgiato’s F-150 concept also straps a supercharger to the 5.0L V8, and then adds a Rancho lift kit, 24-inch wheels, upgraded leather interior, exterior lights, and body kit.
Galpin Auto Sports’ truck is an eye-catcher, sporting Gulf Oil racing livery around a 3.5L EcoBoost drivetrain enhanced by a front-mount intercooler with three-inch cold-air intake, “Freak-O-Boost” exhaust, upgraded suspension, Willwood brakes pairing six-piston calipers with 16-inch(!) rotors, 20-inch wheels, and loads of exterior add-ons.
CGS Performance Products took a truck with the 3.5L EcoBoost V6 and added a cat-back exhaust, cold-air intake, and upgraded intercooler for an unspecified performance enhancement. Chassis-wise, there’s a lowered air suspension, and cosmetic changes include custom paint, and 24-inch wheels and tires; inside, there’s custom leather and an aftermarket entertainment system that allows the viewing of movies on the MyFord Touch screen while the truck is in motion, as well as the use of the front and rear cameras at speed (though we’re not sure why).
Airdesign USA went with a mostly cosmetic set of upgrades, but threw in a cat-back exhaust, upgraded intercooler (we assume the 3.5L EcoBoost motor is under the hood), suspension lift via Bilstein performance shocks, and two-piece 20-inch wheels. Ford says the straightforward nature of Airdesign’s package would be one of the easiest for a handy F-150 owner to put together in the “convenience of your own driveway.”
You’ll likely recognize the name Leer from the companies years of manufacturing fiberglass pickup bed caps, but they’ve added more than that to their F-150 concept. This one gets only minor powertrain upgrades, but adds 22-inch wheels, Rancho suspension providing a six-inch lift, ‘blue flame metallic’ paint with colour-matched bed cap, 1000-watt stereo, and some serious lighting.
We’re fairly certain nothing like any of these concepts will see the light of day as a production model (not as long as the Raptor exists), but we’d cheer if Ford followed MRT’s lead and made a street-performance model with a manual transmission. The 2015 SEMA show runs November 3-6, 2015, at the Las Vegas Convention Centre.