Heavy Duty pickup wars heat up (yet again). At the Chicago Auto Show this week, truckmakers from Ford and Ram (remember, we don???t call them Dodges anymore) have spun press releases announcing segment leadership in power and towing.
Ford fired first with this news on Feb. 7:
???Production begins this week on Ford F-Series Super Duty trucks with upgraded towing capacity. The beefed-up frame and hitch return the industry’s best-selling heavy-duty truck to the head of the pack in conventional trailer towing.
Ford F-350 and F-450 Super Duty trucks with the 6.7-liter Power Stroke V-8 diesel engine and dual rear wheels now can tow an industry-best 17,500 pounds. The hardware upgrades to the Super Duty complement software upgrades to the powertrain control system of the new Ford-engineered 6.7-liter Power Stroke V8 turbocharged diesel to make towing even easier. The Power Stroke delivers best-in-class 800 lb.-ft. of torque and 400 horsepower.
This from the Chrysler Group followed on Feb. 9:
Ram Truck today announced a series of upgrades to its Heavy Duty truck line up that will give it outright class supremacy in trailer towing.
Now boasting the ability to pull a segment-leading 22,700-lb. maximum trailer weight, the one-ton Ram 3500 Heavy Duty will get a performance boost to its 6.7-liter Cummins Turbo Diesel Engine that will increase its torque by 23 percent to 800 lb.-ft. and be upfitted with a package of components that will increase its gross combined weight rating (GCWR) to 30,000 lbs.
A new powertrain control module with revised performance calibration allows the High-Output 6.7-liter, six-cylinder Cummins Turbo Diesel to reach peak torque at 1,600 rpm and exceed the previous model???s output from 1,200 through 2,800 rpm. While peak horsepower remains unchanged (350 @ 3,000 rpm), the engine???s new calibration delivers more than 40 additional horsepower at typical highway cruising speeds.
Looks like d??j?? vu all over again.