If you need a truck that will do what trucks are meant to do, then there’s no better one for the job than Ford’s F-Series. With various trim levels and two distinctly different platforms, the F-Series continues to serve as the hauling vehicle of choice on America’s highways and the work truck of choice on job sites nationwide. Buying a used F-Series is an excellent investment but is one that requires careful consideration of your vehicle needs. In this guide, we’ll point out the key differences between 2004-2008 F-Series models to help you decide which one is right for you.
The F-Series makes up the full-size and heavy duty categories in Ford’s truck lineup. The F-150 can be used for towing loads up to 11,000 lbs. and can carry payloads up to 3,050 lbs. That should be enough for most people, but for those who need even more towing and payload capacity, there’s the F-250 and F-350 Super Duties. Built on a larger, more robust platform, the Super Duty class can carry payloads upward of 8,800 lbs. An F-350 will have more ground clearance and better payload capacity due to its beefier leaf springs and spacers. Both were available as “duallies” and could be equipped with various rear ends.
There were several engines available for 2004-2008, including the Essex V6, Triton V8 and Powerstroke Turbo Diesel V8. The Essex 4.2-liter V6 was only available in the F-150 and is one of the most reliable engines found in any truck from this era. Because the engine made a modest 202 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque, trucks equipped with this engine are best suited for light duty. The Triton V8 was offered as both a 4.6-liter and 5.4-liter. It was available across the entire F-Series lineup and is an excellent choice if you plan on doing some towing. The 4.6-liter made 231 horsepower and 293 lb-ft of torque, while the 5.4-liter made 300 horsepower and 341 lb-ft of torque. The Powerstroke Turbo Diesel V8 is the ultimate engine choice for 2004-2008 Super Duties. With the 6.0-liter making 325 horsepower and 570 lb-ft of torque and the 6.4-liter making 350 horsepower and an incredible 650 lb-ft of torque, the Powerstroke makes quick work of most jobs.
Several different trim levels and special editions were offered for the F-Series. The XL trim includes a strictly-business interior with only the minimum of creature comforts. The Lariat trim gives the F-Series a more luxurious feel, adding better upholstery and more interior amenities. The Harley Davidson Edition takes things even further and adds a full leather interior, Harley Davidson emblems embroidered in the seats and a premium stereo system.
By now you should have a good idea of which 2004-2008 F-Series truck suits your needs best. As one of the best trucks sold in America, you can’t really go wrong with any model you choose.