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1987 Ford F-150 Specifications

by Michael G. Sanchez

The eighth generation of Ford's F-150 debuted for the 1987 model year. The Blue Oval's full-size pickup hit the late 1980s with a sleeker, more aerodynamic exterior design, anti-lock brakes for the first time, a lineup of fuel-injected engines and numerous minor upgrades and enhancements. Buyers at the time clearly embraced the new model, as it maintained its long-running status as the best selling full-size pickup in the U.S.

Evolution, Not Revolution

While the eighth-generation F-150 wasn't an entirely new vehicle -- it carried on with essentially the same chassis, suspension and various other bits as the previous-generation truck -- it was a considerably more modern take on Ford's perennial best-seller. It featured new, flush-fitting headlights with replaceable bulbs, wrap-around parking lights, a minimalist grille and simple, clean-looking new sheet metal. The interior was reworked and restyled to be both more comfortable and more current-looking. Changes included a roomier glove box and larger, easier-to-read gauges. The flareside bed -- with its bulging rear wheel arches -- was temporarily retired and only the styleside bed was offered. The 1987 F-150 was available in the expected regular cab, SuperCab (extended cab) and crew cab body styles. Regular and SuperCab models could be had with either a 6.25-foot or 8-foot bed. The crew cab F-150 was offered only with the 8-food bed.

Modern Mechanical Improvements

For 1987, buyers could choose from a 4.9-liter V-6, a 5.0-liter V-8 and a 5.8-liter V-8. As expected, standard rear-wheel drive and optional part-time four-wheel drive were offered. Transmission choices comprised a five-speed manual and two automatics: a four-speed and a three-speed.

Small, Medium & Large

The regular cab truck measured 194.1 inches long with the short bed and 210.2 inches long with the long bed. Its width was 70 inches and its height was 69.8 inches. The short bed model's wheelbase was 117 inches, while the long bed truck had a 133-inch wheelbase. The SuperCab model measured 216.0 inches in length with the short bed and 232.1 inches with the long bed. Its height and width were 72.1 and 70.0 inches, respectively. The short bed rode on a 139-inch wheelbase, while the long bed's wheelbase was 155 inches. Finally, the crew cab was 245.6 inches long, 70.0 inches wide and 74.6 inches tall, with a 168-inch wheelbase.

Fuel Economy Data

With the manual transmission and the base V-6, the rear-wheel-drive truck managed 15 mpg in the city and 20 mpg on the highway. The four-wheel-drive version turned in a 15/17 rating. The manual-equipped, 5.0-liter V-8 F-150 achieved 14/18 with rear-wheel drive and 12/16 when equipped with four-wheel drive.

With the three-speed automatic and the V-6 engine, the rear-wheel-drive F-150 achieved 14 mpg in the city and 17 mpg on the highway. The four-wheel-drive version turned in a 13/13 rating. The three-speed-equipped, 5.0-liter V-8 F-150 managed 12/14 with rear-wheel drive and 11/12 when equipped with four-wheel drive.

The four-speed automatic transmission was not available with the V-6 engine. With the four-speed auto and the 5.0-liter V-8, the rear-wheel-drive truck achieved 12 mpg in the city and 17 mpg on the highway. The four-wheel-drive version turned in an identical 12/17 rating.

With the big, 5.8-liter V-8 -- which was only available paired with the three-speed automatic transmission -- the rear-wheel-drive truck got 11 mpg in the city and 13 mpg on the highway. The four-wheel-drive version was rated at 10/12.

About the Author

Michael G. Sanchez has been a professional writer for over 10 years. A lifelong car enthusiast and former senior mechanic, he has written on a wide range of automotive topics. He holds a bachelor's degree in English literature from Castleton State College. Sanchez started writing about cars as a part-time copywriter for a local dealership while still in high school.

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