The magazine’s editors presented the award Monday to Mark Fields, Ford president of the Americas at a ceremony at the company’s Dearborn, Mich., headquarters.
While Motor Trend tested versions of the pickup with a 5.0-liter V-8 engine, it was Ford’s 3.5-liter V-6 EcoBoost engine that helped capture the award.
Ford officials now expect the EcoBoost V-6 to be selected by 45 percent of F-150 buyers. Truck owners traditionally have expected their rigs to be outfitted with a V-8 engine, but Ford’s EcoBoost V-6 is changing that perception.
Automakers are pushing for better fuel economy in the pickup segment where muscle has been measured in displacement until volatile gasoline prices and a shaky economy changed priorities for many consumers.
The EcoBoost-equipped F-150s average 18 miles per gallon in combined city and highway driving, according to federal government ratings, compared to 14 to 17 mpg for eight-cylinder models.
The turbocharged V-6 gives the truck more towing power than the larger 5.0-liter V-8.
“It mastered every task we subjected it to, acing our instrumented tests at the proving grounds and swaying opinions during our real-world road evaluations,” Motor Trend Editor-in-Chief Ed Loh said of the F-150 in an announcement.
The F-150 also took top honors from Motor Trend in 2009, 2004 and 1997.