Which 2018 Ford F-150 Engine Is the Best?

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In the market for a 2018 F-150 but can’t decide which powerplant best suits your needs? Check out this real-world feedback from actual owners.

Choices. They can be a wonderful blessing or a horrible curse. And when it comes to deciding which 2018 Ford F-150 engine is best for your particular needs, the choice isn’t as easy as it used to be. Sure, many of us are in the “V8 or bust” camp, even today. But Ford’s Ecoboost V6 lineup is getting better and better, churning out V8-level performance and amazing fuel economy.

So if you’re in the market for a 2018 Ford F-150 and can’t decided which powerplant to go with, what do you do? Well, the smart move is to seek out the opinions of those who already own/drive these trucks. And that’s exactly what F-150 Online member FirstOnRaceDay did in this excellent thread.

“I’m within 3-6 months of ordering a 2018 Ford F-150 SuperCrew 4×4 that I’ll use for a daily driver as well as occasionally pull trailers up to 5,000 pounds. 

I’m also very much at a dilemma as to which engine to get with this new truck – the 2.7L Ecoboost, 3.5L Ecoboost, or 5.0L V-8?For me, reliability and fuel mileage are both the top considerations regarding engine selection. I’m worried if I get either of the Ecoboost engines it will be plagued with problems and TSBs and will mean numerous trips to the dealer for service, both in and out of warranty. I’m also concerned about the long term reliability of the turbo engines as I typically keep my vehicles for 15 or so years before trading, accumulating 200k or more miles on them.” 

2018 Ford F-150

“My current F-150 is a 1999 model SuperCab with the 5.4L V-8 in it and I’m only averaging 15-16 MPG in this vehicle. I would like my new truck to get around 20 or more MPG, on my 95% highway mile weekly commute, if possible.

Any first-hand experiences or suggestions from the group on reliability and real world fuel mileage for these motors?”

For a life-long V8 fan, these are very reasonable concerns. And many, including Labnerd, point out that the 5.0 has come a long way in recent years, too.

“You sound like a person that likes to keep things simple. For that reason, the 5.0 is made just for you. Far less technology needed to keep it running. Many of the 5.0 owners are getting over the 20 mpgs with the 3.31 axle. The 5.0 should have no problems pulling your load.”

However, Wookie points out that there are many flaws in the anti-Ecoboost argument.

“The Coyote is a fine engine but to call it simple is just not true. A variable cam, DOHC V8 with multiple fuel systems is not simple at all. On the first generation 3.5 vs 5.0 the number of electronic sensors was almost the exact same, with the 3.5 using a couple (2-3) more but much simpler and cheaper to replace. The head design of the 3.5 is much simpler than the 5.0. The turbo system is mostly a bunch of pipes and hoses. It looks scary at first glance, but once you really dig into how it works it’s pretty simple. The Borg Warner K03s that are used are probably the most common OEM turbo on the market and are extremely solid. 

Both are extremely reliable, but of course with any mass produced machine there have been a few failures, that’s what warranties are for.Buy the truck that has the best price and makes you smile, the reliability between them is a wash. One other thing to consider, there’s a diesel on the horizon for the F-150 too. It should be available about the time you’re ready to buy.”

2018 Ford F-150

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