F-150 Buyers Can Remove Start-Stop To Get Trucks Sooner

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Senior Pricing Analyst

As CarsDirect’s resident pricing analyst, Alex offers must-know analyses of pricing & incentives to those looking to buy or lease a car. His consumer-oriented coverage of the latest trends and breaking news has been featured by The Wall Street Journal, Fox Business, Motor Trend, Automobile Magazine, and more.

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, Senior Pricing Analyst - August 4, 2021

Ford is giving F-150 buyers an unusual way to get their truck faster amidst a chip shortage. According to a letter sent to dealers on Monday, the company is now offering consumers the option to remove auto start/stop in its engines through the rest of 2021. The move will result in a small discount but could come at a cost.

The letter states "those who decide to purchase an F-150 with the optional start/stop removal will receive a $50 credit." The company estimates implementation of the changes on 3.5L, 2.7L, and 5.0L engines in late August or early September and vaguely claims that delivery of trucks with the feature "will be longer."

The option could satisfy impatient customers but cause confusion in a number of ways. For example, Ford's letter says "some previously scheduled stock orders" will be "spec changed" to remove the feature (denoted by Option Code 52X). Orders with a pending delivery schedule will be updated to reflect the removal.

It's also worth noting that the loss of auto start/stop could have a detrimental effect on fuel economy. Ford says that vehicles impacted by the change will have updated EPA figures printed on their window stickers. Sadly, we think there are some key pieces of info missing that could impact potential buyers.

For example, what kind of loss will this result in when it comes to mpg? How much longer will buyers have to wait to get an F-150 with start-stop? And is a paltry $50 credit really worth giving up a feature that could result in significantly more savings when it comes to gas consumption over the life of the vehicle?

According to a report earlier this year, GM eliminated cylinder deactivation on both the 2021 Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra. We also learned start-stop was taken away from a number of GM's V8 models. As a result, Ford's decision may not be completely out of left field but could be a big inconvenience for consumers.

Just last month, F-150 buyers learned that Ford was planning to ship thousands of trucks delayed by the chip shortage. The company also started handing out $100 Amazon gift cards as compensation. In late July, it was also reported that Ford was considering shipping incomplete trucks with missing chips to its dealers.

With the stakes this high on its bestselling model, Ford clearly appears to be willing to consider anything to avoid losing customers. For now, we recommend consumers with an existing order check with their dealer to explore their options and learn whether or not they'll end up being affected by the change.

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, Senior Pricing Analyst

As CarsDirect’s resident pricing analyst, Alex offers must-know analyses of pricing & incentives to those looking to buy or lease a car. His consumer-oriented coverage of the latest trends and breaking news has been featured by The Wall Street Journal, Fox Business, Motor Trend, Automobile Magazine, and more.

Follow On: Twitter

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