Subscribe now for less than $2/week. Offer ends Friday.

Ford probes fire that destroyed pickup during testing

A photographer says it took about 21 minutes for the fire to consume the Ford truck. Photo credit: CHRIS DOANE

Ford Motor Co. says it is studying a fire that destroyed a pickup during recent testing in California.

“While testing an experimental vehicle in Death Valley, there was a fire,” Ford said in a statement today. “We are investigating.”

According to the spy photographer, the truck, heavily clad in black vinyl, is an aluminum-bodied 2016 Ford Super Duty pickup.

The July fire appeared to start in the driver’s-side front wheel well. The photographer said it took about 21 minutes for the fire to consume the truck.

Two test engineers in the truck exited safely, the photographer said.

Ford’s 2015 F-150 will be the industry’s first mass-produced pickup with an aluminum body.

Ford has not said whether the Super Duty versions of the pickup, expected around 2016, will have aluminum bodies as well.

You can reach Bradford Wernle at