The Big Three’s full-size trucks are the United States’s best-selling and most profitable vehicles. That importance to the bottom line, combined with the fierce competition between the brands, has made those pickups America’s most over-engineered and capable vehicles. Sure, we can find little things to quibble about, like the current generation Silverado’s interior — but broadly speaking, the choice between them comes down to personal taste and brand loyalty more than any difference in features.
One of the few points of distinction between the Big Three’s trucks in recent years has been the tailgate. GM kicked off what we hereby dub “The Tailgate Wars” with the six-function MultiPro tailgate that first appeared on the Sierra Denali. Ram countered with the multifunction tailgate on the 1500, which splits 60/40. Ford, however, has not yet retorted. The company added some functionality to the F-150’s tailgate for the model refresh, but stuck with the traditional tailgate design. But a Blue Oval response may be coming soon.
Ford Authority reports that Ford is working on a new trick tailgate for the F-150. Ford has reportedly not finalized the design yet, but one proposal under consideration is a three-part tailgate that could be dropped in three individual vertical sections, or together as a traditional tailgate.
A three-way tailgate could be useful to buyers. One of the functions of GM’s MultiPro tailgate is as a bed extender; trouble is, when you use, you now have an even longer full-size truck than before, and you can’t use your rear camera. So a feature that could let you carry extra-long wood planks on the side of the bed while keeping the backup camera facing the right way could be quite helpful.
The Tailgate Wars may sound incredibly trivial, but keep in mind Ford is potentially turning a five-figure profit on each F-150 it sells. So if a new feature protects a few thousand sales, attracts a few thousand more and insulates Ford from a sick burn from a rival in a commercial, it’ll be well worth the effort — even if that effort ends up having a third-to-the-party feel.
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