How does a full-size SUV compare to a half-ton pickup truck when towing a 8,100 lbs traile on the world’s toughest towing test – the Ike Gauntlet™? This is precisely what we are about to find out. This time the SUV is a new 2022 Nissan Armada Night Edition and the truck is a new Ford F-150 Hybrid. These two have an approximately the same payload rating. The Armada is rated to tow a maximum of 8,500 lbs. The F-150 has a maximum towing package and a trailer rating of 12,400 lbs. Here is how they did.
This is the world’s toughest towing test because it’s an 8-mile climb up the country’s steepest interstate highway to a maximum elevation of 11,158 feet above sea level. This is a 7% grade with a 60 MPH speed limit.
This SUV is packing a 5.6-liter Endurance V8 with a rating of 400 horsepower and 413 lb-ft of torque (with premium fuel). This engine is mated to a 7-speed automatic transmission. This is a traditional powertrain that is very smooth and sounds great.
Ford F-150 PowerBoost
This F-150 is powered by a 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6 that is combined with an electric motor and a 10-speed automatic transmission. The power rating is 430 horsepower and 570 lb-ft of torque (with premium fuel).
The Armada needed 9 brake applications on the way down to maintain the speed limit. It took 8 minutes 08 seconds to climb the mountains and the trip meter showed 4.2 MPG. The perfect benchmark time to climb the mountain is 8 minutes, and our benchmark fuel economy is 6.0 MPG.
The F-150 needed 6 brake applications. The truck went up the mountain in 7 minutes 57 seconds and showed 3.9 MPG on the trip meter.
Indeded, the pickup truck showed a slightly better downhill performance. The pickup truck had more power in reserve while climbing the mountain, but it showed more fuel usage.