Starting this summer, Ford Motor Co. will offer its 2016 F-150 pickup truck with a gaseous-fuel prep package that enables 5.0-liter V8-powered models to run on compressed natural gas (CNG) or propane autogas.
‘We surveyed customers likely to use natural gas or propane, and 72 percent told us they want to have these alternative-fuel capabilities available on F-150 with the 5.0-liter V8 engine,’ says Jon Coleman, Ford fleet sustainability and technology manager. ‘We expect the gaseous-fuel prep package will be even more popular than it was on the 2014 F-150 with the 3.7-liter V6 engine, given the capability of the 2016 F-150 5.0-liter V8.’
The company says its factory-installed prep package includes upgraded intake and exhaust valves and valve seats. Furthermore, Ford says the 2016 F-150 with an installed CNG or propane system can haul hundreds of pounds more than a similarly equipped 2014 F-150, thanks to the use of advanced light-weighting materials.
According to the company, CNG/propane engine prep from the factory costs $315 before the customer chooses a Ford Qualified Vehicle Modifier to supply fuel tanks, fuel lines and fuel injectors. Upfits run approximately $7,500 to $9,500 depending on fuel tank capacity, the company adds.
Notably, Ford and one of its Qualified Vehicle Modifiers, Westport Innovations Inc., will be displaying the first 2016 F-150 featuring the CNG Westport WiNG Power System at the Alternative Clean Transportation (ACT) Expo in Dallas this week.
With the addition of the 2016 F-150, Ford will offer eight vehicles with the capability to run on CNG or propane.
In fact, the company says it has sold more than 57,000 CNG/propane-prepped vehicles since 2009. Ford sold a record 16,821 commercial vehicles with CNG/propane prep packages in 2014, and the company says 2015 is shaping up to be an even stronger year.
“The growth in interest for CNG/propane-prepped vehicles shows a shift in fleet customers' mindsets,” says Dick Cupka, Ford commercial vehicle sustainability leader. “They are becoming more forward-thinking about alternative fuels, taking into account their total cost of ownership and looking for ways to reduce their vehicle emissions.”
Ford says its most popular vehicles for CNG/propane prep packages are F-Series Super Duty trucks, while prep kits for the 2014 F-150 exceeded expectations by more than 40%, with more than 2,000 units sold in less than a year. In addition, the new 2015 Ford Transit has sold 836 CNG/propane-prepped vans and wagons since it became available in the U.S. in June 2014.