The Ford F-150 is a full-size pickup truck that ranges from a basic two-door work truck to a four-door luxury leisure liner loaded with leather. The number of F-150 configurations exceeds the number of years it’s been America’s bestselling vehicle, which spans at least four decades. It squares off against the Ram 1500, Chevrolet Silverado and related GMC Sierra, and Toyota Tundra for best in class.

The F-150 reflects a version of the American dream in that the possibilities are seemingly endless. It’s a great truck, and a hybrid powertrain with luxury-leaning options and hands-free driving technology prep it for the future.

A 3.5-liter turbo V-6 hybrid powertrain available across the lineup highlights the biggest changes to the redesigned 2021 Ford F-150. An 8.0-inch touchscreen with wireless smartphone compatibility comes standard, but an available 12.0-inch touchscreen portends all the standard over-the-air updates that’ll keep it fresh. Comfort options like a power liftgate that doubles as a workspace and front seats that can fully recline like a La-Z-Boy express the wide net cast by the big truck.

2021 Ford F-150 Review

Subtle updates to the exterior and modest refinements to the inside suggest that this F-150 is the same durable F-150 it’s always been, but tweaked for the modern digital age. It’s still offered in three cab sizes, three bed sizes, six powertrains, six trim levels, and so many configurations it would take an algorithm to sort it all out.  

Except for the new hybrid engine and the standard 10-speed replacing the outgoing 6-speed, the powertrains remain the same on the F-150. A 3.3-liter V-6 equips base XL and XLT trims, but the popular choice for most F-150 shoppers is a 2.7-liter turbo V-6 standard on Lariat. A 5.0-liter V-8 and 3.0-liter turbodiesel V-6 honor truck engines of the past, but the 3.5-liter turbo V-6 standard on the top Limited trim handles the most payload and maxes out with a 14,000-pound towing capacity. The hybrid makes 430 horsepower and 570 pound-feet of torque, has plenty of pop off the line, and rides on such a smooth shifting transmission that it’s hard to notice the shifts after third gear. It also gets an EPA-rated 24 mpg combined.

The hybrid only comes with a crew cab, or SuperCrew as Ford calls it. It’s as big as a lounge, can seat up to six, and has more rear legroom than most full-size SUVs. The extended cab and its rear-hinged rear doors cramps the legs of backseat riders, though there’s plenty of head room. The regular cab can fit three across and serves its function best as a work truck. Three bed sizes range from 5.5-feet to 8 feet, but the longest bed can’t be had with the crew cab.

2021 Ford F-150 Review

The 2021 F-150 can be had in base XL, XLT, Lariat, King Ranch, Platinum, and Limited trims. XL models come with automatic emergency braking, active lane control, an 8.0-inch touchscreen with wireless smartphone capability, and manual windows for $30,635 including $1,695 destination fee; four-wheel drive adds about $3,500 to the price tag.

The Lariat trim hits the sweet spot for value and the modern touch; it comes with the 2.7-liter turbo V-6, the extended cab layout, 18-inch machined-aluminum wheels, and larger 12.0-inch touchscreen and digital instrument cluster. LED lighting, power features, and leather upholstery deck the Lariat for $46,890. At the top of the F-150 line is the Limited—$77,845 when equipped with the new hybrid powertrain in all-wheel drive with the hybrid’s standard crew cab.

Reviewing the 2021 Ford F-150 is effortless, just like the truck itself. Ford’s decades of refinement culminate in the best F-150 ever, there is literally something for everyone. From impressive class leading powertrains and capacities, refined on and off-road driving dynamics, and cutting-edge technology; Ford has clearly done their homework as there is no better choice. The upcoming all-electric Ford Lightning is further proof the F-150 will remain best-in-class for the foreseeable future.