July 28, 2014 at 11:22 pm

Ford's aluminum-body 2015 F-150s to cost more than previous models

Five models will be $395-$3,615 more than in 2014

2015 F-150: more expensive to produce, but as much as 732 lb lighter. (Ford)

Ford Motor Co. said Monday that base prices of its aluminum-body 2015 F-150 pickup will increase between $395-$3,615 over the current 2014 truck, depending on the model.

The new pickup is making headlines because of its aluminum body, which is more costly to produce but reduces weight by as much as 732 pounds compared to the 2014 F-150.

The Dearborn automaker said the new truck will come in five models: XL, XLT, Lariat, King Ranch and Platinum, simplified from the 10 2014 models offered.

Base prices for the XL and XLT will increase by $395 to $26,615 and $31,890, respectively, said Mike Levine, Ford’s truck communications manager. The XL base-model and XLT, Ford’s best-selling trim, represent 60-70 percent of sales, Levine said.

Base price for the Lariat, Ford’s starter luxury model, will increase by $895 to $39,880. The King Ranch base price is increasing $3,615 to $49,460 and the Platinum base price has been upped $3,055 to $52,155.

The price increase is in line with what automotive investment firm Barclays Capital Inc. expected.

“While the final net pricing is not yet known, Ford is likely trying to signal the dealer base that it expects to remain competitive in the lower end of the market while reinforcing its price leadership in upper trim levels,” Barclays said in a statement.

Alec Gutierrez, senior analyst with Kelley Blue Book, said the base model price increase of $395 is less than he expected.

“The fact that there was such a change with this new F-150 and relying on aluminum … you knew the price was going to go up,” he said in an interview. “Couple that with the fact you’re getting some added content, it’s well within the range of what consumers are willing to pay for.”

The XL and XLT will have added standard features that include information screens and more cab speakers, while the Lariat will also include LED box-lighting and heated and cooled seats.

“We’re adding a lot more content,” Levine said. “Especially for the Platinum and King Ranch, we’re adding a lot more smart features that add convenience and productivity that these high-end truck customers want.”

New standard features for the Platinum and King Ranch editions include an 8-inch screen on the instrument panel; LED headlights, taillights, cargo box lights and side-view mirror spotlights; a BoxLinkcargo tie-down system; power tailgate lock; remote tailgate release; two 400-watt outlets; blind spot system; push-button start; heated rear seats; and heated steering wheel.

Exclusive to the Platinum model are standard inflatable rear safety belts and multi-contoured seats.

In total, Levine said the automaker added about $4,500 worth of standard equipment to the Platinum and King Ranch models.

Gutierrez said, “Even on the high end I don’t see buyers shying away from a King Ranch. If you look at everything you’re getting, in addition to the aluminum, my guess is (Ford’s) still going to sell plenty of those trucks.”

Dealers began taking orders Monday for the 2015 truck, which will go on sale in the fourth quarter of this year. Last week, Ford released details about the truck’s two new engines, a base 3.5-liter Ti-VCT V-6 engine, or a 2.7-liter EcoBoost V-6.

Ford has not yet released fuel economy numbers for the new pickup.

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