What Are The Features of the ‘78 F 250?
Let’s explore what makes the 1978 Ford F250 generate so much interest for an owner looking for a classic vehicle to restore to life. (If you happen to find one in great shape, be sure to snatch it up)
The 1978 Ford F-250 runs with a standard 4.9L 300 cubic-inch inline-6 cylinder, though the 400 cubic-inch 6.6L V8 and 7.9L 460 cu in V8 were offered as options. (Ford introduced the 400 as a replacement for the 360 V8 the year before).
The inline six-cylinder engine was a part of the Ford landscape for years, and while it stood the test of time (1960 - the mid-90s), it was never a winner in the power department. Only 8.5% of the F250s were built with the weaker six (most owners opted for the larger V8s), so not many of them were driven.
The ‘78 F250 offered transmissions ranging from the stock 3-spd manual to the SelectShift three-speed Cruise-O-Matic automatic were available. (According to Ford records, 60% of owners sought to outfit their trucks with automatic transmissions). New for 1978 was the 4-speed manual with overdrive, which also appealed to new buyers.
Power Steering and Brakes
The 1978 Ford F250 came with standard power brakes. The company had been using power sterling for a couple of years (since 1973).
In 1978, Ford offered a choice between Flareside and Styleside options. (Flareside trucks had rear fenders that flared out from the wheel wells. Stylesides were straight with no flaring).
Ford continues the “Dentside” identifying mark that ran along the side of their trucks, from the front parking light to the rear reflector light on the back side of the bed wall.
The split-grille front that had been a part of Ford’s front end was scrapped for a single grill appearance with larger, separate headlights silhouetting the sides of the grille.
The cab configurations included Regular Cabs, Supercabs, and Crew cabs, although the four-door cabs were reserved for sale for fleet work trucks mostly. The Std pickups offered two-size beds, 6.5 and 8 feet. The wheelbase was 139 inches for the shorter bed and 133 inches for the longer eight-foot bed.
The 1978 Ford was offered in four trim levels (Custom, Ranger, Ranger XLT, and Ranger Lariat). In addition, Ford made 4x4 models with the choice of full-time or part-time 4-wheel drive.
Since Ford redesigned their internal transfer case, lowering the truck’s height, they could offer a Camper Special Package for these 4x4s without fear that a stiff breeze might blow them over. Owners who wanted a camper package as an option could slide a 12-foot camper onto the trunk’s bed.
Built on independent front twin-I-beam suspension, the truck had confident cornering and a solid feel on the road. The 2.5-inch springs on the rear wheels were designed for heavier payload capacities. The double-walled construction offered additional strength for the bed, and the 8-inch depth made hauling even big loads easy. Truck edges and insides were rounded to make cleaning easier.
By 1978, Ford had been using zinc coatings, along with galvanized steel to help with rust and corrosion. The wheel wells were sprayed with aluminum spray-ons and rust inhibitors to help keep the front and rear quarter panels intact. The Ford f 250’s hood was reinforced with stronger steel and rivets as well.
Capacity and Payload
The 1978 F-250 has a max GVW of 8100 lbs and a maximum payload of 3,625 lbs. The 8-foot box included 73.6 cu. ft of cargo space. The truck also had options for both light-duty and heavy-duty applications, with a tow weight of 15,000 lbs for fifth wheels and 18,500 lbs for conventional trailers. The tow weight made the F250 one of the best trucks for farmers, ranchers, and RV owners.
Camper Special Option
The Camper option was designed for models with a V8 and 4-speed or Cruise-O-Matic transmissions. There were many specific upgrades, like HD rear springs, front and rear stabilizer bars, dual electric horns, and extra wide mirrors mounted on the doors. Oil gauge. 55 amp alternator, and upgraded battery. Ford aptly called their camping add-ons as The Free Wheelin’ Package.
The f 250’s truck interior was color-coordinated bench seating, with vinyl or durable poly-knit fabric (regular cab only), which was easier for owners to clean as they maintained their vehicles. The bench seat configuration allowed additional passengers to sit in the back (seating six), or the owners could use it for storage, whichever they needed. The seats were often two-toned with contrasting colors, making them look luxurious and expensive. With seven inches of standard foam insides, they felt soft and comfortable for passengers as well.
Instrumentation with simple faux wood trim edging on the dash was elegant, reminiscent of something you might find in a sedan. (The tilt-steering wheel added to this impression) Controls were convenient and easy to reach. A stock AM Philco radio came with an AM/FM stereo option. One of the most interesting things that Ford had for their 1978 trucks was an integrated CB radio. Air conditioning was an option that many owners demanded and ended up appearing in about half of the trucks that were built.
New for the ‘78 Ford f 250 was carpeting on the floor, unlike the rubber flooring the Ford had used for decades.
What were the Production Numbers for the 1978 F250?
The units were built in North America, Argentina, and Australia. Production numbers are -
The following model options for the 1978 F250.
What are the Specifications of the 1975 F250?
Below are some specifications of the 1978 F250.
About THE AUTHOR
My name is Matt and I've been around cars all my life! I have owned and worked on many different classic vehicles, so I started this site to share my experiences. If you're new to classic cars, then this website is for you.Read More About Matt Lane