Look How Far We've Come: A Brief Overview of the 1975 Ford F-150


    Picture it now: It's 1975, and you've just laid eyes on this brochure for the first time. Ford Division has announced their new F-150 line. People are getting excited - it's the first ½ ton heavy truck, and it would go on to be most popular in the country for over 4 decades.

    The 1975 Ford F-150 was designed specifically to meet emissions requirements that the government were about to release that tightened the reins a little on vehicles. It was nearly identical to the F-100 otherwise, and just under the size of an F-250.

    So, what were they like?

    The first F-150s were designed with a higher GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) of 6,050lbs., and a higher maximum payload as a result. They came in Regular and SuperCab, and in only 3 trim levels: Custom, Ranger, and Ranger XLT. They had 4 engine options, and naturally none of them were EcoBoost.

  • 4.9L/300 cid I6 with 113 Horsepower

  • 5.9L/360 cid V8 with 145 Horsepower

  • 6.4L/390 cid V8 with 160 Horsepower

  • 7.5L/460 cid V8 with 245 Horsepower

    Just to give you an idea of how insane a 7.5L engine is in an F-150, the current largest engine we have on our lot is a 6.7L in a Turbo Diesel F-250.

    As far as trims go, here's the Standard Options list for the lowest trim level in 1975, which was called "Custom":

  • Fresh Air heater/defroster

  • Energy-absorbing visors and instrument panel padding

  • Instrument cluster with green backlighting

  • Keyless locking doors

  • Color-keyed molded door panels with integral armrests and paddle-type door handles

  • Seatbelts

  • Windshield washers

  • 2-speed windshield wipers

  • Dome light with door courtesy light switches

  • Ash tray

  • Large glove compartment with push-button latch

  • Sponge-grain headlining

  • Black rubber floor mat

  • Door scuff plates

  • Black, red, blue, or green vinyl seat trim

  • 10-inch day/night rearview mirror

  • LH and RH bright-metal exterior mirrors

  • Taillights with integral stop, turn, backup lights and reflector

  • Hub caps (except 4x4s without full-time drive)

    It's nice that seat belts and turn signals are a standard option in the lowest trim level - now we just need to get people to use them. Anyways, moving onto to mid-level trim, called "Ranger" (Sound familiar?):

    (In addition to or in place of Custom features)

  • Color-keyed super-soft vinyl seat upholstery in black, red (except supercab), blue, green, or ginger

  • Instrument panel molding with black accent

  • Color-keyed door panels with bright moldings

  • Shoulder-high vinyl bolster around rear-area (SuperCab)

  • Additional insulation

  • Color-keyed perforated insulated headlining with bright molding

  • Color-keyed wall-to-wall nylon carpeting

  • Black steering wheel with simulated wood grain insert

  • Color-keyed sun visors

  • Cigarette lighter

  • Two courtesy lights (SuperCab)

  • Bright windshield, rear window, rear quarter windows (SuperCab), and roof drip rails

  • Bright wheel lip moldings

  • Bright hub caps (except 4x4 option and dual rear-wheel units)

  • Styleside pickups also include bright bodyside moldings with vinyl insert

  • Bright tailgate moldings top ad bottom and bright taillight bezels

    Cigarette lighters are pretty uncommon in new cars nowadays, but as a kid in the '90s I distinctly remember accidentally burning myself with them too many times. Also, the Ranger trim wasn't available for Crew Cabs.

    Last but not least, the highest trim level available - the Ranger XLT:

    (In addition to or in place of Ranger options)

  • Deluxe, color-keyed, long-wearing cloth and vinyl seat upholstery (Super-soft vinyl is a no-cost option)

  • Color-keyed pleated upper-door panels with simulated wood-grain accented moldings and map pocket lower panels

  • Color-keyed wall-to-wall cut-pile nylon carpeting (including rear storage area)

  • Bright instrument panel molding with simulated wood-grain insert

  • Bright seat-pivot covers

  • Additional insulation

  • Convenience group (cargo, engine, glove compartment, ash tray, and courtesy lights, glove compartment lock and inside 12-in day/night mirror)

  • Color-keyed vinyl headlining (with special insulation) and sun visors

  • Bright wheel covers (15" or 16.5" wheels except 4x4s)

  • Styleside pickup includes upper tailgate applique panel and molding

  • Aluminum tailgate applique panel

    As you can probably imagine, the gas mileage on these was not that great - typically about 12mpg, which is appalling by today's standards. They did, however have an optional "Speed Control" that was really only an option for the 7.5L/460 engine. The brochure also boasts a one-handed tailgate latch and exclusive parts, such as full-width back seats that fold down into a steel flooring for cargo or facing jump seats that fold up for the same reason, as well as Twin I-Beam independent front suspensions on a 133-inch wheelbase.

    In 1976, Ford made some small cosmetic adjustments to the F-150; namely the grill was updated to look more refined and had black accents now. In 1977 they made another update, but this was for exterior trim: the cowl insignias were made smaller and moved closer to the windshield, a rectangular fuel door was installed to better cover fuel caps, and the fuel tank was moved away from behind the seat. For safety reasons, naturally.

    1978 marked the largest cosmetic change in the F-Series as a whole since 1972. The segmented grill with the headlights and FORD lettering was scrapped and replaced with a solid insert piece, with the lettering above the grill on the hood and the headlights on either side of the grill. The 1978 models brought with them the Lariat package, as well as Ranger Lariat, which included rectangular headlights - the Custom trim level still had rounded ones. The new trim package(s) also included two different color options for the inserts that surrounded the headlights - black or silver - to match the grill color of the vehicle.

    By 1984, the F-150 had entirely replaced the F-100 truck and took the title of lightest in its class, and the rest you know is history!

Why Buy CPO?


CPO. Certified Pre-Owned. You see some variation of it at most (if not all) dealerships, and it sounds important, right? The salespeople are all over it. It's a huge deal. But why? What does it mean?

Well, for Harrisonburg Ford, it means a few things. First and foremost, it means that one of our Ford Certified Technicians has done a full 172-point inspection on the vehicle before you even knew it existed. That's great and all, but what's a 172-Point inspection?

  1. A comprehensive vehicle history report (including scheduled maintenance performed)

  2. A comprehensive road test, meaning they take the vehicle out for a short but thorough test drive to check how it runs and shifts

  3. Exterior and interior feature inspection

  4. Underhood, underbody, and diagnostic system inspections

All of this, all before we can even put it on the lot for you to see.

Second, Certified Pre-Owned means that the vehicle is less than five years old and has 80,000 miles or less on it, as well as a clean CARFAX. That's always nice to know, right?

Third, CPO vehicles come with limited warranty coverage for 12 months or 12,000 miles depending on your dealer. This covers over a THOUSAND PARTS in your vehicle - including engine, transmission, and then some. Also, Powertrain Limited Warranty Coverage. This one covers 7 years or 100,000 miles for your engine and transmission, also depending on your dealer.

Finally, all CPO vehicles come with 24-hour roadside assistance. And it's complimentary. This includes:

  1. Towing assistance/rental car reimbursement

  2. Travel and destination expense reimbursement/aid

  3. Fuel delivery, flat tire changes, jump starts, etc.

Now you have a much better idea of what that CPO flag or sticker means! Browsing the lot just got a whole lot easier.


  • Monday 8:00am-7:00pm
  • Tuesday 8:00am-7:00pm
  • Wednesday 8:00am-7:00pm
  • Thursday 8:00am-7:00pm
  • Friday 8:00am-7:00pm
  • Saturday 8:30am-7:00pm
  • Sunday Closed


Harrisonburg Ford Inc.

3155 S. Main Street
Directions Harrisonburg, VA 22801

  • Sales: (540) 434-0700
  • Service: (540) 434-0700
  • Parts: (540) 434-0700
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