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High-end Hauler: 2019 Ford F-150 Limited 4X4 Test Drive

Meet the 2019 Ford F-150 Limited. For years, the Limited model has been the pinnacle of F-150 luxury. It comes standard with many of the features that are optional or not even available in other F-150s and surrounds them with an upscale interior wrapped in leather and trimmed with real metal and wood accents.

The Raptor has been the most off-road-capable version of the F-150 for a decade. The second-generation model roared into dealerships for the 2017 model year with a high-output 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 that generates 450 horsepower and 510 lb-ft of torque. Since then, it’s also been the most powerful F-150 available.

Not anymore. Ford upgraded the F-150 Limited for 2019 by giving it the Raptor’s engine and a new dual-exhaust system. Now it’s the most luxurious and potent model in the F-150 range. But that doesn’t mean it’s too fancy to work. Ford loaned me a 2019 F-150 Limited 4X4 for a week and that’s exactly what I made it do.

2019 Ford F-150

2019 Ford F-150 Limited Exterior

The F-150 Limited’s engine isn’t the only thing that sets it apart from other F-150s. Instead of two black or chrome horizontal slats, its grille has one ribbed bar-within-a-bar that spans the distance between the F-150’s brilliant LED headlights. Chrome letters on the leading edge of the hood literally spell it out to passersby that they’re looking at the flagship of the F-150 line.

No luxury truck would be complete without a special set of wheels, so Ford made sure to put one on the F-150 Limited. The 22-inch polished aluminum wheels looked as if they were giant pieces of jewelry designed to be worn by a pickup and coordinated perfectly with the Ingot Silver paint.

The tailgate was trimmed with more brightwork, but the biggest sign that the Limited was a special F-150 was the pair of exhaust finishers below the body-color rear bumper, especially when I put my right foot down and let out the Raptor engine’s signature growl.

As nice as my press truck looked, I was most interested in the optional spray-in bedliner that protected its 5.5-foot cargo box. My dad and I were going to need it because we had some work to do – and we were going to use the F-150 to get it done. We had a load of old tires, paint cans, and fence planks to get rid of. Luckily, there was a resource recovery center near us that would take most of it. All we had to do was put that stuff in the box.

After I lowered the soft-drop tailgate, I deployed its convenient assist step and grab bar to make getting into the bed with the paint cans easier. I positioned those near the back of the bed to leave enough room for the old wood planks. Once all of those were in place, my dad and I laid the tires on top to hold everything down. Then we headed out to take that odd assortment to its final resting place.

2019 Ford F-150

2019 Ford F-150 Limited Interior

Putting that stuff in the back of the F-150 was sweaty, dirty work, but once my dad and I were done, we were able to cool off and enjoy all of the luxury features inside of it. Ford updated the interior by replacing last year’s Navy Pier color scheme with one it calls Camelback, a handsome combination of rich brown and light crème. Both perforated front seats offered three-stage ventilation (and heating) and two levels of massage intensity. More brown leather covered the top of the dashboard and door panels. Swaths of hand-finished ash swirl wood trim added to the cabin’s natural elegance. Even the headliner, which was made out of a soft fabric, felt like suede.

My dad and I had not been to the resource recovery center before, so I tapped on the SYNC 3 infotainment system’s eight-inch touchscreen to have the navigation take us to the right address. When we got on the highway, I set a speed and following distance for the adaptive cruise control, then chatted with my dad about how nice our surroundings were.

The F-150 Limited comes standard with a dual-panel moonroof with a power retractable shade. Opening that makes the cabin feel even more spacious than it already is. My dad and I had plenty of room in the front row. The heated backseat area offered numerous device charging options and an amount of legroom that’s still impressive five years after Ford introduced this latest generation of the F-150.

2019 Ford F-150

2019 Ford F-150 Limited Performance

It was hard to tell we had a load in the back of the truck. My dad and I probably put a few hundred pounds of wood, metal, and rubber in the bed, but that didn’t come close to the F-150’s payload limit of 1,280 pounds. The 450-horsepower, 510-lb-ft 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 was virtually unfazed. I only put the ten-speed automatic into its tow/haul mode just to say I did it.

2019 Ford F-150

We could’ve carried up to 9,400 pounds of trailer and recyclables thanks to the F-150 Limited’s 3.55 gearing and optional Trailer Tow Package, which equipped it with an upgraded front stabilizer bar, auxiliary transmission fluid cooler, four-/seven-pin wiring harness, class IV hitch receiver, and other features.

2019 Ford F-150

2019 Ford F-150 Limited Safety

When we got to the facility, we discovered that it would only take the tires and paint cans. We ended up having to drive back south with the fence planks still in the bed. I was thankful my dad and I were able to put the F-150 Limited to some sort of work, however unnoticeable it may have been to the Raptor-powered rig. I was also grateful that my press loaner had a long list of safety features to keep me and my dad from getting in a collision, including an automated parking feature, blind spot monitoring with a cross-traffic alert function, a lane keeping system, and a pre-collision system with automatic emergency braking. Front, side-impact, and head curtain airbags as well as a post-collision alert system were in place to help us in the event of a worst case scenario.

2019 Ford F-150

2019 Ford F-150 Limited Overall

The Ford F-150 has never been more powerful or more luxurious than it is now. The 2019 F-150 Limited blends the ferocity of a Raptor with the finery of a dedicated luxury truck. If that sounds like the right combination to you, you can get it at an AutoNation Ford dealership. Prices for the 2019 F-150 Limited start at $67,135.** You can get yours spec’ed just like my test truck for $74,180.

**MSRP excludes tax, license, registration, destination charge and options. Dealer prices may vary.

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