Pairing industry icons for collaboration on a particular model is nothing new in the world of cars and trucks. Usually it works well and an awesome, innovative vehicle results, although sometimes it’s downright cheesy (we’re talking to you, denim-inspired interiors of the 1970s). The Ford Harley-Davidson™ F-150 is in a league of its own, and it’s a match even more successful than any coming out of eHarmony – the 2012 model is the tenth F-150, and if we’re talking success in sheer numbers, then the two have also taken on six Super Duty F-250 and F-350 models, and in 2009 the first Harley-Davidson F-450 edition truck. In fact, Ford has sold more than 70,000 Harley-Davidson F-Series trucks since the brands teamed up in 1999.
The 2012 Ford Harley-Davidson F-150 will undoubtedly continue this momentum, thanks to its show-stopping design and unique features, sure to yet again appeal to truck and motorcycle enthusiasts alike. That’s due largely in part to enthusiasts being behind the scenes making sure it’s executed right; nearly every member of the Harley-Davidson F-150 team at Ford is a Harley-Davidson owner.
“For 2012 we worked with Harley-Davidson to continue to push the styling envelope while still delivering the durability and power that F-150 is known for and that our collective customers expect. It perfectly captures both brands,” said Marc Lapine, Ford F-150 Marketing Manager.
New graphics on the bodyside of the truck invoke a snakeskin texture, while Harley-Davidson dimensional lettering is on the box side. The snakeskin is inspired by tank inserts on premium-level Harley-Davidson motorcycles and also comes into play on the interior. “This is the first time we’ve captured the full spectrum of light to dark on the exterior,” said Mike Massara, F-150 Program Manager. “The graphic flows and accents the design curve of the truck, yet brings the texture of the snakeskin into the vehicle, which is something that’s very difficult to do.”
Interior trim panels are covered in high-gloss Tuxedo Black paint, while the console lid and upper steering wheel carry the snakeskin leather. The scuff plate utilizes brushed aluminum with snakeskin texture, and all interior chrome surfaces have a satin finish. Premium snakeskin leather-trimmed seats come with accent color inserts and unique cloisonné badge.
Standard are new 22-inch machined-aluminum wheels with painted accents and Harley-Davidson bar and shield logo on the center cap. The paint selection is classic Harley-Davidson – Tuxedo Black and White Platinum Tri-Coat; this is the first year white has been offered.
Additionally, the exterior of the 2012 Ford Harley-Davidson F-150 offers a bold front fascia and six-bar billet-style bright chrome grille, and boasts Harley-Davidson bright chrome badging. The truck also has a lowered appearance with a standard, fully integrated deployable running board.
Ford tapped into a bit of its proud racing heritage to create the 6.2-liter V8 gasoline engine, which uses big-bore architecture to produce impressive horsepower and torque. The gasoline engine delivers a best-in-class 411 horsepower and 434 lb.-ft. of torque and provides maximum trailer towing capability of 7,500 pounds. Due to the large bore size, two spark plugs per cylinder are used to more efficiently burn the fuel-air mixture in the combustion chamber, enabling better fuel economy and increased engine torque. And the single overhead camshaft (SOHC) per cylinder head design results in a stiff valvetrain that allows optimized camshaft lift profiles and results in great low-speed torque.
If you want more control of transmission gear selection, SelectShift Automatic™ transmission functionality is also standard. A toggle switch located on the console shift lever engages the mode, where the transmission doesn’t second-guess the driver, giving total control over gear selection and performance feel.
The 2012 Ford Harley-Davidson F-150 offers plenty of technology options to meet customer needs. Standard is a 4.2-inch LCD (liquid crystal display) productivity screen, offering a range of menu options, giving the customer important information on everything from fuel economy to towing performance. The menu is navigated through a five-way button on the steering wheel; the screen is positioned between the tachometer and speedometer. The 2012 model also comes equipped with a standard voice-activated Navigation System that integrates several functions, including voice-recognition destination entry, climate control and SiriusXM Satellite Radio into one easy-to-use system, displaying them on an 8-inch touch screen.