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Car reviews - Ford - F-Series - F250 XLT Crew Cab utility


6 Jun 2002

OUR F250 XLT pick-up came fitted with the Triton 5.4-litre SOHC petrol V8 engine mated to Ford's four-speed auto with overdrive "off" function. The petrol V8 pushes the F250's large chassis down the road with relative ease and the auto handles the torque well, without shaking or jumping from gear to gear. With 194kW of power and 475Nm of torque on tap, the Ford is capable of keeping pace with the traffic when unloaded and cruising comfortably on the highway - turning over at 2000rpm in overdrive. The engine is quiet and always ready to pull - generally spinning at around 2000-2500rpm - yet will rev freely to 4500rpm where it produces peak power output. There is no redline marked on the tachometer and, though the dial goes to 6000rpm, it would be unnecessary to ever rev the engine that high. A common fuel rail per bank feeds the four chambers directly through electronic injectors with Motocraft ignition coils on each of the eight platinum spark plugs to maximise spark and combustion. Spark plugs are fitted into the aluminium cylinder heads next to the fuel-injection nozzles - on top, instead of the usual side fitting seen on earlier Ford V8s. The platinum-tipped spark plugs help provide sure-fire ignition and extend the service life considerably, but they do cost more to replace. The air intake manifold on the Triton V8 is plastic and for this reason Ford does not recommend gas conversion of this engine as pre-ignition could damage the manifold - a real consideration for those used to running big V8s on gas. The exhaust is a two-into-one with a catalytic converter under the cab and one large muffler mounted in front of the rear axle. The tailpipe outlet is on the driver's side at 90 degrees behind the wheel and the engine note is relaxed and deep. The petrol V8 engine is the romantic way to drive this big American icon and with fuel consumption of 17.5 litres per 100km average, you could say that the enjoyment is worth the pain at the pump.

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A light is fitted under the bonnet, which comes on automatically when opened, for after-dark problems or fluid checks

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