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F-150 rated safest full-size pickup

The all-new 2009 Ford F-150 became America's safest full-size pickup by earning 5-star ratings in both government crash tests, in addition to the “Top Safety Pick” award from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and an unmatched list of advanced standard safety features.

“The new F-150's leading 5-star crash ratings and ‘Top Safety Pick’ award further demonstrate Ford's commitment to safety as we have more top government ratings than any other brand,” said Susan Cischke, Ford's group vice-president of Sustainability, Environment and Safety Engineering. “The new 2009 F-150 also offers more advanced safety features as standard equipment than any other half-ton truck, part of our aggressive roll-out of safety for millions of customers.”

The F-150's safety leadership is built on the solid structure that underpins the truck's legendary “Built Ford Tough” durability and capability. The new truck has an all-new hydroformed steel front end — including use of tubular ultra-high-strength lighter weight steel that contributes to its unsurpassed fuel economy in the full-size pickup truck segment.

“The all-new 2009 Ford F-150's leading crash-safety ratings add to its capability, fuel economy and technological leadership,” said Steve Kozak, Ford's chief engineer for safety systems. “We achieved top safety ratings and unsurpassed fuel economy at the same time by using high-strength and ultra-high-strength steel in key areas of the new F-150's structure.”

New to the 2009 F-150 is Ford's standard Safety Canopy side-curtain air bag rollover protection system, which helps protect front and rear outboard passengers in both rollovers and side-impact crashes. The air bag is designed to stay inflated for several seconds for additional protection in rollover crashes, which often last longer than side-impact crashes.

Ford's Personal Safety System is made up of a suite of protection technologies, including dual-stage front air bags and occupant weight classification, working together to help protect occupants. Added to this is a Ford first — the new “K-bag,” a front seat dual-chamber side air bag named for its unique shape, which is designed to help protect the rib cage from excessive crash forces during a side impact.

Ford expects the 2009 F-150's appeal to be even stronger for “core truckers,” who list safety as a top purchase consideration and are a growing part of today's full size pickup market. According to recent Ford customer research, 83 percent of F-150 buyers consider safety a leading purchase reason — more than buyers of five of the six competitive trucks.

“Our customers buy the F-150 because it is a no-compromise solution which addresses their needs — work or play. So whether they're towing a construction trailer to the job site or hauling the family and towing a boat to the lake, the 2009 F-150 provides unmatched capability, unsurpassed fuel economy, and unrivaled safety,” Scott said.

The new F-150 has standard safety and towing aid technologies — including Advance Trac with Roll Stability Control (RSC), a first for the F-150 — that help customers more confidently use the truck's segment-leading towing and hauling capability. The Ford-exclusive stability control system uses a gyroscopic sensor that uniquely helps detect and prevent both skidding and rollovers.

The system offers as standard integrated Trailer Sway Control technology, which helps determine from the yaw motion of the truck if the trailer is swaying and takes measures to help bring it under control. An available Integrated Trailer Brake Controller technology allows direct operation of the trailer's electronic brakes with more confidence than typical aftermarket systems.

Tow Haul Mode changes shift points under acceleration, keeping the truck at a higher rpm and further up in the power range to improve the towing experience by avoiding unnecessary shifts in rolling terrain. The technology also prevents the transmission from shifting up in gear when the vehicle crests a hill, and provides downhill brake support that allows the transmission to downshift, letting engine-compression braking slow the vehicle and maintain a steady speed.

TAGS: Equipment
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