Skip to main content

Buying a new full-size truck can be a challenging task. It’s one of the busiest vehicle segments, with many factors to consider. The most popular model is the Ford F-150. As America’s favorite truck, there’s much to like about it. However, some trim levels are much better than others. There are a few reasons to buy the F-150 base model over any other version of the American-made pickup. What’s so good about the 2023 Ford F-150 XL trim?

The 2023 Ford F-150 base model is affordable

Front angle view of new 2023 Ford F-150, there are a few reasons to buy a base model.
Atlas Blue 2023 Ford F-150 | Ford

Affordability is the first and most obvious reason to buy the 2023 Ford F-150 base model. According to Edmunds, the price with fees starts at $43,325 for an F-150 XL. That’s roughly $5,000 cheaper than the most popular XLT trim. Fortunately, even in its most basic form, the Ford pickup offers plenty of value to owners. A 3.3-liter V6 is standard with 290 horsepower and 265 lb-ft of torque. Additionally, it can tow around 5,000 pounds, which is plenty for most buyers.

Moreover, base model equipment is surprisingly plentiful for the money. Every F-150 XL has standard safety equipment like lane departure warning and forward collision mitigation. Next, trailer sway control with pre-wired trailer connections, single-zone air conditioning, vinyl flooring, an eight-inch touchscreen infotainment system, and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto are standard.

Available engines and four-wheel drive

A black 2023 Ford F-150 full-size pickup truck with LED fog lamps towing a camper at night
2023 Ford F-150 with LED fog lamps | Ford Motor Company

Next, a better engine or four-wheel drive is one of the most popular reasons to buy a more costly truck. However, the 2023 Ford F-150 XL base model can get those optionally. First, the 2.7-liter V6 EcoBoost engine with auto start/stop technology is $1,285 extra. Next, the impressive 5.0-liter V8 with auto start/stop and flex-fuel capability is $2,335. The former offers 325 horsepower and 400 lb-ft, while the latter gains 400 hp and 410 lb-ft. Either way, buyers get much more power in their F-150 without requiring higher trims.

In addition to engines, 4×4 is available for the F-150 XL instead of 4×2. If a buyer chooses to do so, it’ll add $5,015 to their bill. Using Ford‘s build and price tool, an F-150 base model with its standard engine and 4×4 costs $40,505 after destination charges. Although it’s more costly than a standard XL, it’s still more affordable than any other model with similar equipment.

Costlier 2023 Ford F-150 trims are unnecessary

Lastly, buying the 2023 Ford F-150 base model is smart because costlier trims are unnecessary. When engine power and other upgrades are available at a lower price, why buy more expensive models? For example, the Platinum trim starts at $66,490. Although expensive, it isn’t even the most expensive trim in the F-150 lineup. However, we don’t think most features included with a Platinum trim are worth the money.

LED headlights, taillights, an integrated brake controller, a heated steering wheel, heated rear seats, an eight-speaker B&O stereo system, and wireless smartphone charging are standard, as are adaptive cruise control and evasive steering assistance for safety. Additionally, the Platinum trim gains 20-inch wheels and some unique cosmetic changes compared to the nearly identical western-themed King Ranch model. Do these features make the F-150 Platinum worth almost $23,000 more than the XL base model?

Buy the 2023 Ford F-150 base model

In conclusion, there are a few reasons to buy the 2023 Ford F-150 base model over other options. The XL trim is barebones, but it’s usually enough for pickup truck buyers. Things like towing and payload capacity, a capable engine, and other “trucky” features are present, even with the cheapest version of the most popular pickup in America. Additionally, it’s upgradeable with beefier engines, four-wheel drive, and more without paying more for a higher trim. Lastly, most F-150 trims are luxurious but unnecessary. Additional features gained from costlier trims aren’t usually worth the money.


2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R: The V8 Raptor Is Finally Here