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The only problem with the ford is that I almost got sucked into the grill when the V10 fired up.
That sounds pretty close to the truck I ordered, a fully loaded F-350 SuperCab 4x4 V10. The MSRP on mine was $32,795. The cab is the largest of any full size truck. The Supercab has a total volume of 114.5 cubic feet. Compared to the Dodge, the Ford has almost one inch more front seat headroom, 1.7 inches more front hip room, .8 inches more rear leg room and .3 inches more rear shoulder room. The Dodge did have .9 inches more rear seat head room.
Fird did a good job with the Super Duty series, and I respect their efforts. There are just a few things that will keep me out of a Ford again until they're addressed:
1 - Why does Ford assume I'm a a moron and can't read a gauge? Having auxiliary gauges is great, but a gauge that just says "NORMAL" is as useless as the idiot light it replaced.
2 - When will they take the hint that the headlights are too high? I parked my 93 F150 side by side with my 96 Ram 3500 when I got it and despite the Dodge being nearly 5 inches taller, the headlights were closer to the ground. I don't have people flashing their lights at me any more.
3 - Please go back to a simple pull-knob for the lights - it's a no-brainer to operate, and that's what all controls should be - no-brainers. If I want to turn on the dome light, I have to *think* about where that thumbwheel is, and which direction to roll it.
4 - Why can't Ford design a back seat with a full-height seatback that's not dead vertical like the new F150? That half-seat in the Super Duty trucks with the glued-to-the-wall upper cushion is basically the same seat they've used since 1980.
I won't get into Ford dealers, since there are no competent ones here in north NJ... another reason I went Dodge. If you have a decent truck like my 90 Ford, or a piece of crap like my 93, you shouldn't have to go to 5 different dealers and two independent shops to get the darn thing serviced or repaired.
Depending on what Dodge does to upgrade the Ram for 1999 and 2000, we'll see what my next baby-semi will be.
I've done all of my maintenance at Ford dealerships and have no complaints, except a minor beef with one place. I'm sure it cost a little more for me to go to dealerships, but they have always fixed the problem the first time. As you probably know, I'm a satisfied owner of a 92 F-250HD 4x4. It's going to be tough to part with it. At the same time, I can't wait for the new rig.
For the answer to question #1 see question #3...
Brutus is right - the basic truck is good enough that we can nitpick on the little things that make the truck comfortable. When I get around to replacing my Ram, it will be a pretty fair fight between another Dodge and the F350, but it will be the little things that make the difference.
In Alaska, I know that the truck of choice (regardless of brand) was a 3/4 4x4 for regular recreational use. The 4x4 was necessitated by the winter driving, the boat launching and the dirt road driving to get back to some of the camping, fishing and hunting sites. The 3/4 ton was the preferred size because a good deal of these trucks either have slide-in campers on top and recreational vehicles in tow or they are pulling campers.
The MSRP prices you mentioned in your first post must have been for fully loaded 1 ton 4x4 diesels. The MSRP on my fully loaded 1 ton SuperCab Lariat 4x4 V-10 was around $32,700. The same truck with the diesel would have been a little over $36,000. A 3/4 ton gas engine non-Lariat SuperDuty will have a MSRP under $30,000. It's still not chump change, but the price difference between the Ford SuperDuty trucks and the Ford lightduty trucks with the same options isn't significant. I was pleasantly surpised.