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As temperatures rise in the summer months, folks will once again begin to experience the unpleasant sensation of climbing into a sweltering car and sweating in the overheated seats. Fortunately, some vehicles, such as the 2021 Ford F-150, offer ventilated seats to help keep you cool. But how exactly does this feature work, and do all F-150 trims include it?

How do ventilated seats work?

Ventilated seats feature a porous fabric or perforated material to allow for air circulation, HowStuffWorks explains. In addition, within the seat are several fans that, when turned on, cool the seat surface.

In addition to the cooling effects of the fans, ventilated seats help regulate your body temperature due to their mesh or perforated material. While standard seats block the heat that naturally radiates from your body, the porous covering of ventilated seats enables your body heat to dissipate more easily. This reduces the amount of sweat that will get trapped between your body and the seat during heatwaves.

Ventilated seats have the added benefit of reducing your fuel consumption and lowering your carbon emissions. HowStuffWorks states that using a standard air conditioner to cool your car can reduce fuel efficiency by up to 24 percent. This is why the Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory developed the design for ventilated seats. That’s because cooling individual areas of your car is significantly more efficient than cooling the entire cabin.

Which 2021 Ford F-150 trims offer ventilated seats?

Ventilated seats offer a wide array of advantages, but they’re not available on every 2021 Ford F-150 trim. The two base trims do not offer this feature. However, heated and ventilated front seats are available in the Lariat, King Ranch, Platinum, and Limited trims. According to U.S. News, other seating upgrades include massaging front seats, 180-degree reclining front seats, heated rear seats, and synthetic or genuine leather upholstery. 

Regardless of which trim level you choose, reviewers praise the F-150’s seats. They’re spacious enough that adults can comfortably ride in the rear row, and the driver’s seat provides excellent visibility. The max recline front seats are also excellent if you frequently work long hours in your truck. In fact, U.S. News says that although these seats are less comfortable than a bed, they’re still “a better napping setup than other trucks offer.”

What else you’ll get with this highly rated truck

The 2021 Ford F-150 comes standard with a 3.3-liter V6 producing 290 hp and 265 lb-ft of torque. And it can tow 5,000 pounds. Standard features include auto-off headlights, remote engine start, and a hands-free communication system. The F-150 also comes with several advanced safety features, including electronic stability control, traction control, and lane departure warning.

U.S. News gives the 2021 F-150 an overall rating of 8.9/10, ranking it second among full-size pickup trucks. Reviewers praise the abundance of storage space within the cabin, noting the lockable storage box under the truck’s rear seats.

The F-150 also stands out thanks to its SYNC 4 infotainment system, which U.S. News calls “one of the better ones in the class.” The graphics are excellent, and it includes a few physical controls to make it easier to operate while driving. This infotainment system also contains a digital copy of the F-150 manual with how-to videos to answer your questions.

The 2021 Ford F-150 comes highly reviewed regardless of which trim you choose. However, if you’ll be driving in the heat and want the added comfort of ventilated seats, be sure to opt for one of the higher trim levels.


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