$150,000 Can Get You the Closest Thing to a Ford Monster Truck
Automakers have created some big and expensive trucks before. Mercedes turned the G-Wagen into a 6-wheeled pickup. Rtech Fabrications turns classic Chevy pickups into 8’-tall, 21’-long bro-dozers. And even when the manufacturers don’t modify the trucks, tuners will. Hennessey took a page from Mercedes and made a 6-wheeled F-150 Raptor. Long McArthur Ford has also made several special-edition Super-Duty pickups. But the subject of Doug Demuro’s latest video may have them all beat. It’s a Ford F-650, it costs $150k, and it’s about the closest you can get to road-legal monster truck.
Is the Ford F-650 an actual production pickup truck?
Kind of. Ford’s F-Series Super-Duties can basically be split into commercial and non-commercial lines. Although the non-commercial line may seem to end with the dually F-350, the most expensive non-commercial truck Ford sells is the F-450 Limited. With a towing capacity of up to 35,000 pounds, it’s just about all the pickup most people will ever need.
But for customers repairing power lines or working construction, there’s the commercial Super-Duties. The Diesel Brothers turned an F-550 into a 6-wheeler. But the Ford F-650 and F-750 are at the top. These trucks normally don’t even come with rear bodywork. There’s just the front cab and bare chassis in the back to attach whatever is needed for the job.
Normally that’s something like a lifter or commercial trailer. But the Ford F-650 in Doug’s video is a bit special. A company called SuperTruck takes F-650s and fits them with F-350 beds. But putting a ‘regular’ pickup bed on a commercial truck can’t really disguise what it is. Or how big it is.
The Ford F-650 isn’t just big, it’s actually too big
Ford doesn’t actually provide an official height for the F-650. However, Doug provides a good visual demonstration of how big this truck is. Doug is over 6’ tall, and he’s nowhere to be seen at the start of the video because the F-650 blocks him completely out of sight. The F-650’s front bumper (which comes from SuperTruck, not Ford) sticks out so far, Doug can use it almost like a park bench.
Unlike most heavy-duty pickups, this Ford F-650 doesn’t have dual rear wheels. Instead, SuperTrucks installed single 15”-wide Michelin commercial truck tires. But these tires are so big, the F-350’s wheel arches technically aren’t wide enough to fit them. If the pickup bed was mounted any lower, the tires would catch on the wheel arches.
Usually, when a truck or SUV is this tall, the manufacturer offers steps or running boards to help passengers get in. But the Ford F-650 is so tall, the normal steps weren’t enough. So, when someone opens the F-650’s doors, an additional lower step extends out.
When Doug eventually gets the Ford F-650 out on the highway, he is virtually level with semi-truck drivers. And, in fact, this F-650 isn’t too far off from a semi-truck when it comes to some of its practical features.
Is this actually a good pickup truck?
SuperTruck replaced the standard seats with leather ones. The front seats are heated, and the rear bench can fold flat to make a bed. For those towing trailers, the mirrors are actually power-extendable. Push a button, and they move in or out to make sure you can see around your load. There’s also a button that activates the exhaust restrictor, which helps the truck slow down on descents without burning up the brakes. There’s also a button that lowers and raises the bed.
And if the bed doesn’t have enough space, or you don’t what to throw anything in there, there are two lockable storage containers on either side next to the steps. Oh, and there’s one more thing about those steps: they’re also fuel tanks. The Ford F-650 comes with dual fuel tanks with a combined 115-gallon capacity. A truck this size needs a lot of diesel.
Although its 6.7-liter turbodiesel V8 makes 330 hp and 725 lb-ft, the F-650 isn’t exactly quick. And driving it, Doug remarks it’s just like any other big pickup. It doesn’t handle particularly well, and the ride isn’t particularly nice. The only real difference is how high you sit and how much mass you’re carrying.
But sitting as high as a semi-truck driver, dealing with a pickup whose wheels are too big for its body, isn’t necessary for the average buyer. Especially when you consider how large trucks and SUVs are forcing changes to the IIHS’ crash test. And putting a normal pickup bed on a Ford F-650 just robs it of its commercial usability.
So, no, the Ford F-650 doesn’t make a good pickup truck. But then, monster trucks usually aren’t.