2021 Ford F-150 vs 2020 Ford F-150 – Cincinnati, OH

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  • 2021 Ford F-150

    A black 2021 Ford -150 is angled left.

    Starting at

    Est. $30,635

    2020 Ford F-150

    A black 2020 Ford F-150 is angled right.

    Starting at

    $28,745

    12Infotainment Screen (in)8
    YesHybrid OptionNo
    6Engine Options6

    When looking for a pickup truck for serious work and play, the Ford F-150 is the best in the business. And somehow the F-150 manages to get better with each year, and the 2021 model year is no exception. With many new features, the 2021 Ford F-150 has something for everyone. Featuring best-in-class towing, payload, and power, you will not find a more capable full-size pickup truck. While the full-size segment is a very competitive one, the F-150 stands out for its innovation. New for this year is a hybrid powertrain and an available on-board generator, making the 2021 Ford F-150 one of the most useful trucks ever made. So let's take a look at how this new model stacks up to its predecessor in a comparison: 2021 Ford F-150 vs 2020 Ford F-150.

    While the 2020 Ford F-150 is a great truck—versatile and capable and with a wide range of configurations and trim levels—Ford decided to redesign the 2021 F-150 to make it even better. Now with an all-new interior that brings more functionality and luxury, and redesigned styling outside as well, it’s clear why the Ford F-150 has been the best-selling truck in America for the past 43 years. So, let’s take a more in-depth look at the changes for the 2021 model year and see what makes this truck so unique. With three bed lengths, six powertrains, three cab sizes, and six trim levels, the F-150 gives you the chance to find a combination that suits your needs and your budget.

  • Performance

    A red 2021 Ford F-150 is towing a boat across a bridge near Cincinnati, OH, after winning the 2021 Ford F-150 vs 2020 Ford F-150 comparison.

    While the Ford F-150 will see significant changes for the 2021 model year, most of the same engines are expected to return. There will, of course, be updates to the numbers in terms of torque and efficiency, but for the most part, the powertrain options will be the same. The base engine, a 3.3-liter V6, will now come standard with a 10-speed automatic transmission. And there is now a 3.5-liter PowerBoost V6 hybrid powertrain. This marks the first year the Ford F-150 will be available as a hybrid. Other notable changes include an available Pro Power Onboard electrical generator, which will make the Ford F-150 an even more useful and productive truck.

    Engine Choices for the 2020 F-150 

    The base engine for the 2020 F-150 is a 3.3-liter V6 with 290 hp and 265 lb-ft of torque. This engine is paired with a 6-speed automatic transmission. With this engine, you get a great combination of light towing power and excellent fuel efficiency as it returns up to 19 MPG in the city and 25 MPG on the highway. 

    The next engine is a 2.7-liter twin-turbocharged V6 with 325 hp and 400 lb-ft of torque. While there is a significant increase in power with this engine, it is also more fuel-efficient with a rating of 20 MPG in the city and 26 MPG on the highway. This engine can tow up to 8,500 pounds, so this is a great option if you expect to use your F-150 to tow a boat to the lake or tow a small travel trailer. If you need to tow heavy and often, there are more options for you, however, as the F-150 has many engines to choose from.

    The next engine is a 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6 with 250 hp and 440 lb-ft of torque. This is a great engine for towing with a max towing capacity of 11,500 pounds. It’s also a diesel, so you can expect great fuel efficiency too. The 3.0-liter turbodiesel returns 21 MPG in the city and 28 MPG on the highway for two-wheel drive models and 20 MPG in the city and 26 MPG on the highway in four-wheel-drive configurations. 

    If you are looking for a truck for towing, however, the F-150’s best engine for this is a 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged V6. This engine features an astounding 375 hp and 470 lb-ft of torque. This is the engine known for its hauling prowess with a towing capacity of 13,200 pounds. However, this engine does not seem to be returning for the 2021 model.

    The last engine in the F-150 lineup is a 5.0-liter V8 with 395 hp and 400 lb-ft of torque. This engine returns up to 17 MPG in the city and 23 MPG on the highway and has lots of muscle for towing and hauling. Able to tow up to 11,600 pounds, you can get a lot of work done with this engine. Performance with the 2020 F-150 is excellent no matter what engine you choose, though. 

    What’s New for 2021 

    You can expect that the 2021 Ford F-150 will have best-in-class towing, payload, and power numbers when they are released. The 2020 Ford F-150 was only 200 pounds shy of making that claim, so the 2021 won’t have to work very hard to reclaim the throne. You can also expect that the 2021 Ford F-150 will have improved fuel economy numbers across the board as the new model is redesigned with active grille shutters, an automatic air dam, and a more aerodynamic body.

    Also new for the 2021 model year is a hybrid powertrain. This full hybrid system uses a 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6 engine, a 35 KW electric motor, and a 1.5 kWh lithium-ion battery, which is conveniently mounted below the rear seat so that it doesn’t take up passenger or bed space. With this engine, you will have the capacity to tow up to 12,000 pounds. This is a game-changer for Ford. It will also have a range of 700 miles on one tank of gas. This model will also come standard with the Pro Owner Onboard, the on-board generator, so not only will this be a fuel-efficient model, it will be a powerful and capable model as well. So while the 2020 model has tons to offer, the 2021 model has even more. 

  • Safety

    A couple is walking to a cabin at night with a silver 2021 Ford F-150 parked outside.

    Ford Co-Pilot 360 

    The 2021 Ford F-150, like the 2020 model, will feature Ford’s suite of advanced driver assists—Co-Pilot 360—which includes automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, adaptive cruise control, active park assist, automatic high beams, evasive steering assist, blind-spot information system with cross-traffic alert, and lane-keeping assist. Standard safety features include forward collision warning and dynamic brake support, pre-collision assist with auto emergency braking (with pedestrian detection), hill start assist, auto hold, and a rearview camera with dynamic hitch support for help hooking up a trailer.

    Other safety features for the F-150 include a 360-degree camera, which shows a complete view around the truck, and active drive assist, which uses a camera facing the driver to track their head and eye position to make sure the driver is not getting tired. It can also be used for hands-free driving. Intersection assist is another feature offered in the F-150, and this is a useful tool when turning left into an intersection, as it can apply the brakes to avoid a crash if there is an oncoming vehicle.

    Both the 2020 and 2021 Ford F-150 are loaded with advanced safety features to keep you and your family safe on the road. And with so much standard safety equipment on the 2020 F-150, such as hill-start assist, trailer sway control, and curve control, among other features, we can expect the 2021 F-150 to have even more advanced safety equipment.

  • Interior

    A man is in a 2021 Ford F-150 on a laptop while talking to a construction worker outside the truck.

    Inside the F-150

    With many options to customize, the 2020 Ford F-150 seems to have a model built for everyone. A good example is the Lariat trim, which features the 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6, 18-inch aluminum wheels, Co-Pilot 360, heated mirrors, and leather seating. For even more upscale features the King Ranch, Platinum, and Limited trims offer plush interiors with heated leather front and rear seats, Sync 3 and Bang & Olufsen Play, or Sony audio systems. Heated rear seats and voice-activated navigation are also standard on the King Ranch trim.

    What’s New for 2021

    While the 2021 model year for the Ford F-150 sees many changes, such as a hybrid powertrain and on-board generator, and the changes are even more apparent with the interior. The dashboard has been completely redesigned to accommodate the new and optional 12-inch touchscreen. The 2021 Ford F-150 also can now receive over-the-air updates, which are instantaneous and happen in the background. An 8-inch touchscreen is standard, and included is a digital version of the owner’s manual for your convenience. But, overall, whether you opt for the 2021 or 2020 model, the F-150 is fully equipped inside, and you certainly won't regret your decision. 

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