• More horsepower and torque from Power Stroke diesel
  • Updated interior and exterior styling details for King Ranch editions
  • Increased capabilities for F-450 Super Duty

Ford appropriately chose the State Fair of Texas to launch its updated lineup of heavy-duty pickups. The 2015 F-Series Super Duty includes revisions such as a more powerful available Power Stroke diesel engine, styling updates for King Ranch versions and increased towing capacity for the F-450.

Texas represents a huge market for pickup sales. According to Automotive News, one in six pickups sold in the U.S. go to a customer in Texas, and more pickups are sold in just the Houston and Dallas areas combined than in any other state. For pickup drivers who need more capability than a half-ton, light-duty truck like the F-150 can provide, heavy-duty models like the F-Series Super Duty are ideal.

For the 2015 model year, Ford's Super Duty trucks offer more capability. Both horsepower and torque from the optional 6.7-liter Power Stroke diesel are increased, thanks to a new, larger turbocharger. Although Ford did not reveal output figures for the updated Power Stroke, it did promise improvements on the current specifications of 400 horsepower and 800 lb-ft torque. To handle the power gain, Ford also has included a host of internal engine and transmission updates.

The larger turbo provides the Power Stroke with a secondary advantage, as well: improved engine exhaust braking. Engine exhaust braking -- activated by a dash-mounted button -- reduces brake wear by using the engine's compression to slow the vehicle. That's particularly helpful when hauling or towing heavy loads down steep grades.

In addition to mechanical updates for the Power Stroke, the 2015 F-Series Super Duty gets cosmetic revisions for the top-trim King Ranch model, too. New leather interior trim and blacked-out exterior details differentiate the 2015 model from its predecessor.

In terms of capability, the F-450 tops the F-Series Super Duty lineup, and it too is improved for 2015. A more robust frame and suspension, along with commercial-grade wheels and tires, help boost its towing and hauling capacities.

F-Series Super Duty trucks aren't for everyone. The needs of many pickup drivers can be met with light-duty trucks like the F-150. But for drivers who need to tow or haul like a pro, nothing beats a heavy-duty pickup. Once Ford reveals the official specifications of its newest Super Duty lineup, we'll see how they stack up against the capabilities of rivals like RAM, Chevrolet and GMC.

What it means to you: Updates to F-Series Super Duty pickups for 2015 affect F-450 models, King Ranch editions and trucks fitted with Ford's Power Stroke diesel.

author photo

Nick Palermo is an automotive writer and lifelong car nut. He follows new and late-model used vehicles for AutoTrader.com, writes about vintage cars for Hemmings Classic Wheels and blogs on all things automotive at LivingVroom. He lives in Atlanta with his wife and twins.

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