Consumer Reports only recommends one full-size 2022 truck: the Ram 1500. The Ford F-150 earned second place, but with a score of 60/100, it lagged far behind the Ram’s 75/100. So what gives? The 2022 F-150 leverages some advanced technology, but this Ford may be the wrong kind of futuristic for most truck buyers.
The 2022 Ford F-150 features advanced EcoBoost and hybrid engines
Ford is leading the turbocharged engine revolution. This automaker introduced its EcoBoost turbocharged engine family in 2009.
EcoBoost advancements included using the engine coolant to cool the turbocharger, ensuring that it lasts as long as the engine itself. EcoBoost engines make a lot more power–with a lot less fuel–than their naturally-aspirated counterparts.
Then Ford decided to kick the fuel savings up a notch. In 2021, the brand paired the EcoBoost with an electric motor to build the world’s first fully hybrid pickup truck drivetrain: the F-150 PowerBoost.
The F-150’s PowerBoost makes 430 horsepower while the Ram with a 5.7L HEMI V8 putters along with just 395. In addition, the PowerBoost boasts a 24 mpg combined city/highway rating. V8 Ram owners must settle for 19 mpg combined. So why in tarnation would Consumer Reports rank the 2022 Ram 1500 so much higher?
The 2022 Ram 1500 is one easy-riding truck
While Ford focused on upgrading its engine options, Ram focused on every other aspect of its truck. Consumer Reports called the fifth-generation (2019-present) Ram “comfortable-riding,” “responsive,” “quiet,” and “lavishly furnished.”
Ram tossed its outdated leaf springs, and every fifth-generation Ram floats on coil springs, in both the front and the rear. Optional air-ride suspension improves the ride further. Consumer Reports even fawned over the, “remarkably quiet cabin.”
In addition, the Ram’s handling is “quite responsive” considering its size. Selecting “auto” 4WD means the truck automatically engages the front wheels whenever traction is poor. Importantly, the Ram 1500 beat out the F-150 in Consumer Reports’ “emergency handling” test.
Finally, Ram upgraded its truck’s interior. Its Uconnect infotainment system continues to be an “easy to use” segment leader. The Ram excels in categories such as cargo area, rear-seat room, and overall fit and finish.
Is the newest Ford pickup truck the wrong kind of futuristic?
“The F-150 gets jittery and choppy on bumpy roads, leaving it a far cry from the plush comfort of the Ram 1500, which benefits from a coil-spring rear suspension as opposed to the F-150’s leaf-spring setup.”Consumer Reports
Ford retained the F-150’s rear leaf springs. Consumer Reports found the resulting truck, “jittery and choppy on bumpy roads.” To make matters worse, “the steering is slow and offers little feedback.”
Some might applaud the Ford V6’s “carlike hum.” But some truck buyers yearn for the rumble of an American V8 provided by the Ram’s HEMI. And the current generation of the PowerBoost suffers “clunky” downshifts.
Overall, the 2022 Ford F-150 features some very advanced drivetrain technology. But it lags behind the current Ram 1500 in the categories that Consumer Reports–and many consumers–rank the highest.