Ford (NYSE: F ) begins accepting dealer orders for the all-new 2015 F-150 pickup on Monday morning. The big news: Prices have increased over Ford's 2014 models, as expected.
But at least on mainstream trim lines, the increases were less than some analysts expected.
Buyers of the base XL and XLT models will pay $395 more for the 2015 trucks, while buyers of the premium Lariat models will pay $895 more.
For that extra cash, buyers will get more standard features, Ford officials say. And they'll get them in a new-from-the-ground-up truck that is significantly lighter than current models, thanks to the extensive use of aluminum.
This isn't a trivial change: In some configurations, the new trucks are as much as 700 pounds lighter than the trucks they replace.
The F-150's new weight advantage is expected to give drivers significant gains in handling, braking, acceleration, towing capacity -- and most importantly, fuel economy. Ford hasn't released fuel economy figures yet, but it's possible that buyers will quickly recoup the price increases in savings at the pump.
Ford says that it expects about 85% of F-150 buyers to opt for the XL, XLT, and Lariat trim lines.
For those who want a plusher, higher-tech truck, Ford will again offer the deluxe King Ranch and Platinum trims -- but at significantly higher prices, $3,615 higher for the King Ranch and a $3,055 increase for the Platinum.
Ford says those price increases will include a host of new high-tech standard features, including LED headlamps and tail lamps, blind-spot and lane-departure warning systems, and LED spotlights on the side mirrors.
The new trucks are expected to start arriving at Ford dealers late this year.
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