2017 Ford F-250 Super Duty King Ranch Crew Cab 4x4 Review

One of the biggest and best things on four wheels


Wade Thiel, Senior Staff Writer



Positives: Gobs of torque, luxuriously appointed interior with plenty of room and an abundance of features, great steering.
Negatives: Can be a little bumpy on the highway, long and awkward on certain tight roads and parking lots.
Bottom Line: The F-250 is the heavy-duty pickup you should buy if you want the very best. It's the most advanced truck out there, and it feels like it. The only real downsides to this truck are its overall size, and its sometimes bouncy ride (something that would be mitigated with a heavy trailer hanging off the hitch). This is the best truck out there, and if you have the dough for it, you'll be a happy driver.
 View Our 2017 Ford F-250 Super Duty Overview
Late last year we drove the F-350 dual rear wheel (DRW). It was excellent, but just a little too large for our liking. It took up the whole lane with no room to spare either side. Still, it’s an excellent truck. When we heard we were going to get into the F-250 without the DRW, we were excited because it’s very similar. Ford’s Super Duty platform is excellent. Here's what we found after a week with the F-250.
 

Driving Experience

8.9

 

The F-250 Super Duty that came as our tester was fitted with a crew cab and felt just as long as the F-350 we previously drove. However, the omission of the DRW meant we had a little traffic-lane breathing room to either side of us. This made driving the Super Duty in the city way easier. It makes sense as a work truck for just about anyone as it’s nimble enough to maneuver around in tight spaces (it's a little uncomfortable but doable) but large enough be effective in a heavy work environment.

Ride Quality: The F-250 doesn’t feel as smooth as we remember the F-350 being. That could be due to the extra weight of the F-350. The F-250 bounces a bit over bumps and cracks, but it’s not especially unsettling. We expect the truck would smooth out a bit with a trailer on the hitch as the stiff rear suspension would calm down a little. Even with the truck not being as smooth as we remembered, it was still a pleasant ride.

Acceleration: The 6.7-liter turbodiesel V8 has slight hesitation, but when it accelerates, it does so with purpose. A number of publications have reported 0-60 times between 7 and 8 seconds.

Braking: The brakes offer more pedal feel than in the F-350 and don’t seem to be as stiff. They do an excellent job of slowing down and stopping the truck.

Steering: A big truck like this doesn’t seem like it should have such good steering, but the F-250 does. The adaptive steering on our tester was excellent—precise and tight. However, it was a little numb and doesn’t offer much road feel at all.

Handling: There’s little body roll in the big truck, which inspires confidence in most situations. You do have to consider the truck’s overall size in tight curves. Otherwise, it handles surprisingly well. Its weight can be felt in turns, but all that weight seems to help get the most grip possible out of the tires.

Technology

9.2

 

The 2017 Super Duty is the most technologically advanced heavy-duty pickup truck that Ford has ever created. It has a robust infotainment system, a large instrument cluster with a digital vehicle information display and plenty of available driver assist features. Our tester was equipped with adaptive cruise control, adaptive steering, lane departure warning and blind spot detection. There were also a number of up-fitter switches that allow you to customize the Super Duty as you see fit.

Infotainment System: The Sync 3 system is excellent. It’s smooth, fast and offers an interface that is intuitive and easy to use. It is also feature-packed, supporting Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as well as a number of additional apps. The 8-inch touchscreen is plenty large enough and offers great graphics.

Controls: The Super Duty is packed with a good mix of buttons, switches and touchscreen controls, and despite there being a large number of controls throughout the cabin, everything seems well-placed and easy to use. You can jump in this truck and after a minute or two know where things are and what they do.

Bluetooth Pairing: Our phone paired quickly and easily to the infotainment system with no issues.

Voice Call Quality: Calls were clear on both ends with no interruptions.

Styling

8.4

 

Like the F-350 we previously reviewed, the F-250 features a boxy look. It’s a truck that catches your attention on the road or in a parking lot not only because it’s large, but because the squared off styling gives it a kind of macho look. This is exactly the kind of tough-looking pickup truck that working men and women want. It’s a purposeful design that complements the truck's capabilities.

Front: The front is dominated by a large rectangular, horizontally oriented grille. The grille and the squared-off headlights help give the F-250 a domineering look that we love.

Rear: The rear features a part chrome tailgate with the words King Ranch spread across it. While the chrome seems to be a little over the top, it makes sense that if you spend a lot of money for a truck like this, you’d want people to know how darn nice it is.

Profile: The rectangular shapes and squared-off edges are extremely obvious from the side. It’s also obvious how long and tall-standing the truck is. It looks like it’s ready to take on anything.

Cabin: The dash is a little thick, almost too thick, but all of this truck is chunky. It’s expected, and the broad interior styling in the cabin means that Ford has plenty of room to lay things out properly. Nothing looks cramped or added on. It all works together well. The leather mingles with the plastics and wood trim in a way that makes it hard to remember what the lower trim level F-350 we drove had in those places. Whatever it was, we know it didn't look quite this good.

Comfort

8.9

 

The level of comfort in the King Ranch version of the F-250 Super Duty is very high. Honestly, it should be. The people riding around and driving this truck likely spend a lot of time in it. While it might seem silly to have a tough work truck with a posh interior, when you really sit down and think about it, it makes sense. This kind of truck is usually someone’s workspace. They’re going to be in and out of the truck all day and they need to be comfortable.

Front Seats: The soft leather on the front seats is superb. The 10-way adjustable seats allow you to fit the seat to your backside like a glove. There’s plenty of support but not much bolstering. The seats are pretty flat. Our tester came with massaging seats. They were also heated and cooled. These features made the already comfortable front seats even better.

Rear Seats: The rear seats aren’t quite as luxurious. They do have the same leather upholstery and a similar level of support as well as a heating function. There is also a ton of legroom back here. You can really stretch out.

NVH (noise/vibration/harshness): The F-250 does a good job of blocking out road and wind noise and feels solid overall. Bumps and cracks in the road can cause some slight vibrations.

Visibility: Sightlines out the front and sides of the vehicle are good. You can easily see what’s going on around you thanks to the tall ride height. In tight parking situations, it can be tough to tell where exactly the truck ends (both up front and in the rear), but the mirrors, cameras and sensors do a good job of showing you what you can’t actually see.

Climate: The dual-zone climate control is excellent, cooling off or heating up the cabin with ease. The heated and cooled front seats also help.

Safety

8.8

 

The 2017 Super Duty is rated high for safety by the government, but it has yet to be rated by the IIHS. The NHTSA awarded the two-wheel drive version of the F-250 a five-star overall rating. Unfortunately, the 4x4 version (our tester was a 4x4) didn’t fare as well and received a four-star rating due to the poor performance in the rollover test. It received only three stars in that test.

IIHS Rating: Not yet rated.

Standard Tech: The F-250 comes with plenty of standard safety tech, including airbags throughout the cabin, backup camera, SOS post-crash alert system, child tethers and reverse sensing.

Optional Tech: Although the test vehicle was delivered to us without a monroney, we noticed it was equipped with blind spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, adaptive steering and land departure warning.

Storage/Cargo

8.9

 

The storage and cargo spaces in the F-250 are designed for work teams. This being the case, there is ample room to store things, haul things and generally move things from place to place. There are few vehicles, save for maybe a minivan, that offer more interior storage and you also get a large bed at the rear of the vehicle for those dirty jobs.

Storage Space: Interior storage space in the Super Duty is nothing short of impressive, the space under the center armrest is cavernous, easily swallowing a handbag or even a laptop computer, there’s two gloveboxes, the center console has a large tray, multiple cup holders and a big bin in the center console and there’s some smaller pockets and trays throughout the cabin. Underneath the rear seats is a foldable, lockable storage box that you can fit all kinds of stuff into, including rifles for you hunters.

Cargo Room: The truck bed offers ample room and the optional tailgate step installed on our test vehicle proved to be helpful for getting up into the cargo area to load or move stuff around.

Fuel Economy

8.5

 

Fuel economy numbers aren’t required for heavy duty pickups. Because of this, there are no EPA estimates for the F-250. The 6.7-liter turbodiesel V8 seems to do pretty well on fuel consumption despite the fact that it’s so large. The numbers we saw, were impressive for a vehicle so large. Still, you’re going to be filling up your tank fairly often.

Observed: We saw an average fuel economy of 15 mpg over the course of our week with the vehicle.

Driving Factors: We did an almost even mix of highway and city driving. On the highway, we averaged about 19 mpg. In the city, it was between 10 mpg and 12 mpg. We were conservative with the throttle in most situations with a few passing and heavy acceleration scenarios.

Audio

8.3

 

The premium Sony 10-speaker audio system provided ample sound for the large cabin. Everything was crisp and clear, and the system is a nice addition to Ford’s SYNC 3 infotainment system, which is excellent.



Final Thoughts

Overall, there isn’t much to complain about in the Ford F-250 Super Duty. It offers a lot, especially in King Ranch trim level. If you’re in need of a large, heavy-duty pickup truck that can also act as an everyday vehicle, this truck honestly has the goods. It’s not as family friendly as many other vehicles and isn’t as smooth or easygoing as a car, light truck, SUV or minivan, but it is extremely capable in almost all situations. If you need a heavy work truck and an everyday vehicle and can only get one thing, the F-250 Super Duty fits the bill.

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