The F-series line of pickups is Ford Motor Co.'s undisputed golden goose. And the nest is about to get bigger.
For the first time since it created the Super Duty brand of heavy-duty pickups for the 1999 model year, Ford next year is adding a nameplate to the venerable line: the F-600.
The 2020 F-600 Super Duty, available in the middle of next year, will slot between the F-550 Super Duty and the F-650 medium truck. It's meant to offer commercial businesses more power in roughly the same package as the F-550.
Mike Pruitt, Ford's Super Duty chief engineer, said the F-600 "hits a sweet spot" in the commercial pickup business.
"It's the right size to deliver the capabilities of a Class 6 truck ... in that familiar Class 5 Super Duty package," he said. "Customers no longer have to choose between a truck that doesn't have enough payload or a truck that's too big."
The F-600 will have a gross vehicle weight rating of 22,000 pounds, which is roughly equal to the F-650. Ford did not release any power or capability figures.
The chassis-cab configuration will come with three engine options: a new 7.3-liter V-8 gasoline engine, the third-generation 6.7-liter Power Stroke V-8 diesel or a 6.2-liter V-8 gasoline engine. All come with a 10-speed automatic transmission.
The 7.3-liter engine is expected to be the most powerful gasoline V-8 in its class, Ford says.
The F-600 arrives as Ford freshens the rest of its Super Duty lineup for the 2020 model year. On a larger scale, the automaker is shifting 90 percent of its capital allocation to producing pickups, vans and utilities. By 2020, roughly 75 percent of its lineup will be updated or new.