The Engines Ford Won’t Put in the 2023 F-150
Ford offers the most engine choices for its F-150 of the three domestic full-size truck makers. But both the Ram 1500 and Chevrolet Silverado 1500 offers big displacement V8 engines in their pickups, but Ford doesn’t. And Ford just debuted an all-new 6.8-liter “Mini-Zilla” V8 for its Super Duty trucks that it won’t put in the smaller GVW F-150. Then there’s the 5.2-liter Predator V8, found only in the F-150 Tremor and Raptor R, which also won’t be offered in the regular 2023 F-150 line.
In 2020, Ford replaced its 6.2-liter V8 with the all-new 7.3-liter Godzilla V8. Then for 2023, it has a new version of the Godzilla engine, the “Mini-Zilla”, a destroked 7.3-liter displacing 6.8-liters. Ford didn’t name the 6.8 according to Ford Authority, but that seems to be what’s catching. When you parse the numbers, it seems like it would be another great engine for an F-150. The 6.8 has around 400 hp while the 7.3-liter pumps out 430 hp and 470 lb-ft of torque.
Would Ford put the Tremor 5.2-Liter engine in a standard F-150?
Ford currently offers only one V8 engine for 2023 in the standard F-150 line. The 5.0-liter produces 460 hp and 420 lb-ft of torque. The Tremor and Raptor R see that upped to 5.2-liters and 700 hp with 640 lb-ft of torque. But don’t confuse this engine with the 5.2-liter Ford Voodoo engine found in Mustangs, which features a flat plane crank.
Ford won’t be offering the 5.2-liter in the regular F-150 line. Only the Tremor gets it in 2023. As the Tremor, F-150, and F-250 all share identical physical dimensions, it’s not a matter of size. Everything else such as transmission, suspension, brakes, etc., can be swapped around between all of Ford’s trucks. So it’s not that.
Why won’t put the 6.8 or 5.2 engines in the F-150?
So the only thing to assume is that it’s a marketing thing. Ford doesn’t want to blur the lines between its F-150 and Super Duty F-250. It figures that anyone who wants Godzilla power can just move up to the F-250 with its suspension and features. And the Tremor is the brand’s standout performance model, competing directly with the Ram TRX. It needs some exclusivity, otherwise, it is a trim package.
But there’s still a chance that the regular F-150 line might see both the Tremor Mini-Zilla engines in the future. Ford created the 7.3-liter Godzilla engine because it offers built-in power increases. The bore spacing of the Godzilla was increased from the current 5.0-liter V8 of 3.93 inches to 4.530 inches.
What’s the future for Ford V8 engines?
That gives plenty of room for displacement increases. And adding hybrid technology with its increased horsepower could see a much more powerful version of Ford’s Godzilla than where it’s at right now. Yeah, we’re getting off a bit. But the point is that Ford could keep a much more powerful 6.8 and 7.3 for the Super Duty, yet be able to sneak the current 6.8 into regular F-150 trucks.
The same goes for the Tremor/Raptor R. Increasing stroke or bigger turbos could increase the power, leaving the current Predator engine for the regular F-150 line. Look, we know that gas-powered engines are going away, but the transition will take place over 20 or more years. There are still fun times with V8s until it doesn’t make sense to produce them.