Each year brings a new opportunity to bestow Ford with a fresh set of awards. The Detroit auto giant has garnered plenty of recognition over the years, and that trend looks likely to continue as Ford racks up another healthy haul of trophies from some of the industry’s most respected critics. Take market research stalwart J.D. Power, for example. In 2019, the firm awarded Ford with a record-setting five awards as part of its U.S. Automotive Performance, Execution, and Layout (APEAL) study. While the awards included recognition for Ford Expedition and Lincoln Navigator, it was Ford’s range of pickups that really stole the show. J.D. Power honored the revamped Ford Ranger, best-selling F-150, and Super Duty F-450 as the pick of the litter in the midsize, large light-duty, and large heavy-duty categories. This showing followed a strong performance in 2018, another year in which Ford topped J.D. Power’s list for highest Initial Quality and Vehicle Appeal.
Ford seems to have a way with pickups, at least in the eyes of critics, who, time and again, have recognized the automaker’s knack for turning out powerful, reliable trucks that stand the test of time. If you’re on the hunt for Super Duty trucks for sale, you’ve undoubtedly seen the plaques plastering the walls of any Ford dealership you step foot in. The accolades are already beginning to pile up for 2023, with Edmunds, Price Digests, and Vincentric all recognizing the brand’s exceptional reputation for value. This comes as little surprise when you’re talking about the F-150, which has managed to retain the title of America’s best-selling pickup––and best-selling vehicle of any kind––for over three decades, but Ford’s Super Duty lineup has also had a strong showing as of late.
Recently Earned Acclaim
The range of heavy-duty pickups, which includes the F-250, F-350, and F-450, was named the Best Value in America for the 3/4-ton and one-ton segment in 2023. The F-250 boasts the lowest maintenance, repair, and total cost of ownership in the 3/4-ton class, while the F-350 took home similar honors for the one-ton segment. Lower ownership costs aren’t the only thing separating the Super Duty lineup from the rest of the pack. Price Digests handed the F-250, 350, and 550 the Highest Retained Value Awards just last year, with the F-250 posting a class-best 59.29 percent value retention over the first five years of ownership. This superlative isn’t just limited to new Super Duty models, a fact that was driven home by industry analyst Vincentric, who gave the F-250 the Best Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) Value award in the 3/4 ton truck segment. As these praises start to pile up, drivers might start asking themselves: what makes the Ford Super Duty lineup such a standout when it comes to value? Join us as we seek to answer that question and see how Ford’s Super Duty pickups excel in a range of vital categories, from depreciation to ownership and maintenance costs.
If you’re looking for a vehicle that’s all about retaining value, it’s hard to beat a pickup truck. Built of sterner stuff than your average sedan or SUV, pickups tend to depreciate slower than any other type of vehicle for one simple reason: they’re made to work. Pickups are designed with robust frames, suspensions, and other resilient components that can take a beating and still show up for work the next morning. They’re also safer than smaller vehicles and, especially in the case of the F-Series lineup, are always in demand.
Taken together, these factors provide the ideal recipe for resale success, meaning it’s easy to recoup a large portion of what you paid for the truck when you’re ready to upgrade. The numbers don’t lie: pickup trucks have an average five-year depreciation of 41.3 percent, which is 10 percent lower than the average for cars (54.1 percent) and SUVs (51.9 percent). In fact, out of the top ten vehicles with the highest resale value, six were pickup trucks, which is a compelling statistic that’s hard to ignore when shopping for your next vehicle.
This is especially true of the Super Duty lineup, which, thanks to its heavy-duty designation, tends to be even more robust and long-lasting than your run-of-the-mill F-150. The F-250 is the perfect example of the trend. With an MSRP starting in the low-mid $40,000 range, the F-250 isn’t the cheapest heavy-duty pickup on the market, but that price is a little easier to stomach when you consider the fact that the pickup will still retain two-thirds of its value five years after it first rolls off the dealer’s lot. MotorTrend estimates that the F-250 will still command as much as 64 percent of its value after five years, while Price Digests pegs the number closer to 59.2 percent, but no matter how you look at it, it’s an exceptional value and the clear leader in its class.
The F-350 fares almost as well, with an estimated five-year value retention of 62.5 percent, according to MotorTrend, which is especially impressive given the fact that the 2023 truck tows up to 38,000 pounds for a living. Ford’s range-topping F-550 easily walks away with the crown in Price Digests’ Medium Duty Trucks Crew Cab and Chassis category for the third straight year, boasting a retention value of 58.2 percent.
Cost of Ownership
When it comes to the true cost of owning a vehicle, the sticker price is only half the story. Some drivers might think they’ve landed a diamond in the rough only to find themselves scheduling service after service as their “great deal” turns into a financial albatross around their neck. That’s why researching ownership and maintenance costs is such an important part of any vehicle-buying process. There are a lot of factors to consider when trying to determine a vehicle’s true cost of ownership, from taxes and fees to fuel and maintenance costs, insurance, repairs, and more.
Take the Ford F-250 Super Duty King Ranch Crew Cab, for example. When optioned with the 6.2-liter V8, the truck has a cash price of around $62,727, but according to the handy Total 5-Year Ownership Costs calculator on Edmunds.com, the true cost to own rings in a little closer to $73,299. An extra $10K can be a make-or-break expense for some drivers, so let’s take a closer look at that number.
According to Edmunds, the F-250 will run drivers around $2,973 in insurance costs over the first five years of ownership, though that figure may vary based on a driver’s age, marital status, credit history, driving record, and address. Repair costs are another important factor to consider when trying to determine whether a vehicle is a good value or not. Edmunds’ formula includes all repairs not covered by the vehicle manufacturer’s warranties over the first five years of ownership, giving the F-250 a sum of $2,546. Of course, many repairs can be avoided if a driver follows the proper maintenance schedule, performing tasks like wheel alignment, battery, brake, spark plug and filter replacements, and other predetermined maintenance tasks. Keeping up with this type of schedule will run drivers around $7,810 over the first five years of ownership, though that number can easily be reduced by rolling up your sleeves and taking the D.I.Y. route when it comes to some basic maintenance tasks.
Edmunds is pretty transparent about the formula it uses to arrive at this number, which can be useful when drivers are comparing vehicles. The five-year cost to own is calculated under the assumption that a driver is averaging 15,000 miles per year and making a 10 percent down payment on the vehicle at the time of purchase. Financing is another important part of the equation, and while the exact terms will differ for every driver, the Edmunds formula assumes that a driver has above-average credit, a loan term of 60 months, and is using traditional financing as opposed to lease financing.
So how do Super Duty trucks like the Ford F-250 stack up when it comes to ownership costs? Well, according to Vincentric, they’re one of the best options on the market. The F-250 earned the website’s 2022 Best CPO Value in America award in the Full-Size 3/4-Ton Pickup segment, thanks largely to its low operating and maintenance costs. The reliable, hardy pickup offers a modest ownership cost that’s 2.2 percent below the segment average, making the hard-working truck an exceptional value when compared to the rest of the category. Much like Edmunds, Vincentric calculates this true ownership cost by considering costs associated with depreciation, insurance, repairs, maintenance, finance, fuel, taxes, and state fees. The Vincentric Best CPO Value in America Award averages the costs associated with every trim level for a specific model for the previous five years on the market, giving drivers a real-time look at how much these vehicles actually cost after you’ve driven off the dealer’s lot.
For Power and Reliability at a Good Price, Go for a Ford Super Duty Truck
Ford’s Super Duty trucks are some of the most powerful, reliable vehicles on the market, and they only become more appealing when you start to drill down into the numbers. Consistently rated as one of the best values in the segment, the Super Duty lineup is hard to beat, with industry experts like Edmunds, Vincentric, and J.D. Power bestowing the trucks with new hardware year after year. This sort of recognition can go a long way in proving that not all trucks are created equal.
Sure, different models might be comparable when it comes to metrics like horsepower, torque, towing, and payload capacity, but when you start to factor in elements like depreciation and long-term ownership costs, so pickups take themselves right out of the running. With a strong reputation and over 100 years in the business, Ford knows a thing or two about building a truck that can stand the test of time. This is especially important in the heavy-duty segment where, more often than not, these trucks are being put to work, serving an essential role on the job site and never taking a day off. If you’re looking for a trustworthy heavy-duty pickup that offers exceptional value, the critics seem to agree: the Ford Super Duty series is the way to go.