2017 Super Duty chassis cab can haul, tow more

Michael Martinez
The Detroit News

Ford Motor Co. on Tuesday said its new aluminum-bodied Super Duty chassis cab is more capable than the its steel-bodied predecessor.

The Dearborn automaker revealed the 2017 Super Duty chassis cab’s best-in-class front gross axle weight rating and best-in-class gross combined weight rating are both better than the current model. And the truck’s new 6.7-liter Power Stroke V-8 diesel engine has more horsepower and torque than the previous version.

The announcement was made at the NTEA Work Truck Show in Indiana.

“Commercial truck customers need tough, capable trucks that can haul heavy equipment to crush challenging jobs,” said Craig Schmatz, Ford Super Duty chief engineer. “The innovations our team has put into the next-generation Super Duty chassis cab are paying off by delivering capability that surpasses the competition.”

Ford said the 2017 Super Duty chassis cab will get a front gross axle weight rating of up to 7,500 pounds — 500 more pounds than the current model — to help it with tasks like carrying bigger snowplows, taller utility buckets or other body upfits.

The combined weight of the truck and everything it can tow and haul is up to 40,000 pounds — 5,000 more pounds than the current model.

And the 6.7-liter V-8 diesel engine will get 330 horsepower and 750 pound-feet of torque. That’s 30 more horsepower and 90 more pound-feet of torque than the current trucks. The Super Duty pickup engine will have different engine power numbers, Ford said.

The automaker in January said it was adding chassis cab capacity to its Ohio Assembly Plant in Avon Lake.

Ford’s all-new Super Duty will go on sale late in 2016 as a 2017 model. It’s the first major update since the truck’s introduction in 1999, and is up to 350 pounds lighter than the previous model due to a switch to an aluminum body. Pricing has not been announced.

Transit upgrades

Also at the work truck show, Ford announced interior and exterior enhancements to the 2017 model year Transit vans and a new engine for its E-Series stripped chassis and cutaway models.

The E-Series vehicles, which are often modified into ambulances, delivery vans and motorhomes, will now offer a new 6.2-liter V-8 in addition to the standard 6.8-liter V-10.

The new Transit will offer 64 different configurations, up from 58 possible configurations with the current model. Some of the new features include low-profile center consoles and power running boards.

“Walk-through center consoles are just one enhancement we are adding in response to real-world driver input,” says Yaro Hetman, brand manager, Ford Transit, Transit Connect and E-Series. “Fleet customers tell us they love Transit, and we are making it even better for the 2017 model year.”

The interior also includes optional heated driver and front passenger leather and cloth seats; and 10-way power-adjustable seats can be ordered in cloth on all Transit variants.

The Transit Connect compact commercial van has also been updated with two new premium packages for the Titanium and XLT trim levels.

It includes the Sync 3 infotainment system on a 6.5-inch touchscreen standard.

Ordering for the 2017 Transit Connect cargo van and Transit Connect Wagon begins online March 14, with vehicles available at Ford dealerships in September.

mmartinez@detroitnews.com

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