1997 Ford F-150 Towing Specs

by Rob Kemmett

The 1997 Ford F-150 was the 49th installment in Ford's long line of powerful pickup trucks. Popular among construction workers and various contractors for its powerful load-carrying and towing capabilities, the F-150 became the best-selling pickup truck in America for the 13th year in a row in 1997. Two models were available, Regular Cab and SuperCab, both of which offered a powerful towing capacity. In that year, with hopes to attract a new crowd of drivers, Ford decided their best-selling truck needed a makeover. The 1997 F-150 was the first model in the series to have a smoother, more rounded body, as opposed to the flat-sided, rugged appearance of its predecessors. Although the appearance had been altered, the brute strength of the 1997 F-150 had not been compromised.

F-150 4x2 Automatic Transmission Regular Cab

The Regular Cab models of the F-150 had a standard two-door cab with two front seats. As with all models of the 1997 F-150, the maximum towing capacity differed in relation to the power of the engine and the rear axle ratio. A larger engine and higher rear axle ratio resulted in a higher towing capacity. The 4.2 liter engine, paired with a 3.08 rear axle ratio, or RAR, produced a maximum towing capacity of 4,800 lbs. The 4.2L engine with a 3.55 RAR produced a maximum towing capacity of 5,800 lbs., the 4.6L engine with 3.08 RAR had a MTC of 5,700 lbs., the 4.6L engine with 3.55 RAR had a MTC of 7,200 lbs., the 5.4L engine with 3.08 RAR had a MTC of 6,500 lbs., and the 5.4L engine with 3.55 RAR had a MTC of 8,000 lbs.

F-150 4x2 Automatic Transmission SuperCab

The SuperCab models of the 1997 F-150 were equipped with a four-door cab, making it larger and heavier than the Regular Cab models. The SuperCab added more total weight to the truck, which slightly decreased its towing capacity. The 4.2L engine with 3.08 rear axle ratio had a maximum towing capacity of 5,600 lbs., the 4.6L engine with 3.55 RAR had a MTC of 7,000 lbs., and the 5.4L engine with 3.55 RAR had a MTC of 8,000 lbs.

F-150 4x2 Manual Transmission Regular Cab

The 4.2 liter engine with 3.08 rear axle ratio could haul a maximum of 2,300 lbs., while the 4.2L engine with 3.55 RAR could tow a larger load of 3,600 lbs. The models with a 4.6L engine with a 3.08 RAR had a maximum towing capacity of 2,200 lbs., and the 4.6L engine with a 3.55 RAR had a MTC of 3,500 lbs.

F-150 4x2 Manual Transmission SuperCab

The 4x2 manual transmission models equipped with a SuperCab, 4.2 liter engine and a 3.08 rear axle ratio could tow a maximum weight of 2,100 lbs. The 4.2L engine with 3.55 RAR had a maximum towing capacity of 3,400 lbs., the 4.6L engine with 3.08 RAR had a MTC of 2,000 lbs., and the 4.6L engine with 3.55 RAR had a MTC of 3,300 lbs.

F-150 4x4 Automatic Transmission Regular Cab

Regular Cab models equipped with 4x4 automatic transmission, a 4.2 liter engine and a 3.08 rear axle ratio had a maximum towing capacity of 4,400 lbs., while the same model with a 3.55 rear axle ratio could tow up to 5,400 lbs. The 4.6L engine with 3.08 RAR had a MTC of 5,300 lbs., the 4.6 engine with 3.55 RAR had a MTC of 6,800 lbs., the 5.4L engine with 3.08 RAR had a MTC of 6,000 lbs., and the 5.4L engine with 3.55 RAR had a MTC of 7,700 lbs.

F-150 4x4 Automatic Transmission SuperCab

The 4.6 liter engine, paired with a rear axle ratio of 3.08, could haul a top weight of 5,100 lbs., while the same model with a rear axle ratio of 3.55 could tow up to 6,600 lbs. The 5.4L engine with 3.08 RAR had a MTC of 6,000 lbs., and the 5.4L engine with 3.55 RAR had a MTC of 7,700 lbs.

F-150 4x4 Manual Transmission Regular Cab

The 4x4 models of the 1997 F-150s with manual transmission offer the lowest towing capacity out of all the available models. The 4.2 liter engine with a 3.08 rear axle ratio could only haul 1,900 lbs., and the same model with a 3.55 RAR could tow 3,200 lbs.--both of which are performance specs that aren't as powerful as the manual transmission models. The 4.6L engine with 3.08 RAR had a MTC of 1,800 lbs., and the 4.6L engine with 3.55 RAR had a MTC of 3,100 lbs.

F-150 4x4 Manual Transmission SuperCab

The SuperCab 4x4 manual transmission models were only available with a 4.6 liter engine. The 4.6L engine with 3.08 rear axle ratio had a maximum towing capacity of 1,700 lbs, while the same model with a 3.55 rear axle ratio could tow up to 3,000 lbs.

About the Author

Rob Kemmett began writing professionally in 2010 and specializes in writing about food and hospitality. Kemmett has worked in various fine-dining restaurants throughout his career and holds an Associate of Applied Science in Le Cordon Bleu culinary arts from the Cooking and Hospitality Institute of Chicago.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera pickup truck image by Tonda from Fotolia.com