1979 Ford F250 (Specs And Features)

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The 1979 Ford F-250 is a true vintage pickup in every sense of the word. What are the specifications and features 1979 Ford F250?

The ‘79 F250 was the last year model of the sixth generation of F-250s. The truck had four trim levels; Custom, Ranger, Ranger XLT, and Ranger Lariat. Production numbers were 189,743, of which 85% were V8s engines. It is one of the most sought-after trucks by restorers for its size and durability.

For over 46 years, the Ford brand has dominated the pickup world with its F-series by producing the best-selling truck on the planet. One of the best of the past four-plus decades is the 1979 version of the F250. With almost 190,000 of these rugged pickups rolling off the factory lines, many are still on the road today. What makes the 1979 Ford such an irresistible truck? Why is it one of the most sought-after trucks for classic collectors?

Table of Contents


What Are The Features of the 1979 Ford F 250?

While Ford elected not to change much on the 1979 model from previous years, it did make some minor tweaks to the front headlights and a couple of other features.


The 1979 Ford F-250 runs with a standard 4.9L 300 cubic-inch inline-6 cylinder, though there were three V8 options available (351 cubic-inch 5.8L, 400 cubic-inch 6.6L V8, and 460 cu in 7.5L V8). .

Engine Specs for HP and Torque
300 cu in 4.9 L Inline Six 101 Horsepower
351 cu in 5.8 L V8 136 Horsepower
400 cu in 6.6 L V8 169 Horsepower
460 cu in 7.5 L V8 239 horsepower

The inline six-cylinder engine was the go-to engine for many years, and while it stood the test of time (1960 - the mid-90s), it never satisfied truck owners who clamored for more power.  For years the six-cylinder was hit or miss, with only 14.2% of the F250s built with the inline six (most owners opted for the larger V8s)..

The ‘77-79 F250 offered transmissions ranging from the standard 3-spd manual to the SelectShift three-speed Cruise-O-Matic automatic were available. (According to Ford records, over 60% of owners sought to outfit their trucks with automatic transmissions). The ‘79 continued the 4-speed manual with overdrive, which had been introduced the year before. Interestingly enough, to have a camping or towing package, Ford recommended the automatic SelectShift transmission to do the job.

For years the Ford Motor Company had refused to adapt to an internal transfer case, which caused their 4x4 trucks to sit much taller than the competition. However, beginning in 1977, Ford was the last manufacturer to redesign their 4-wheel transmissions. (The term “highboy” gets its name from the higher stance of the 4x4 trucks).

Power Steering and Brakes

The 1978 Ford F250 came with standard power disc brakes (100% of units are so equipped). The company used power steering for over six years (since 1973), but it was still considered an upgrade.


In 1979, Ford kept most of the design from the previous few years intact, choosing an “if it ain’t broke” mentality. All pickups were given rectangular headlights, and if you ordered the chrome grill option, it included chrome surrounding the lights.

Regular cab F250s came only with an 8’ bed in Styleside. However, you had the choice of a 6.5’ or 8’ bed with the SuperCab (the shorter bed was offered with the Flareside, but most trucks had the Styleside option). In addition, Ford made the Crewcab more available on the F250 and F350, whereas before, it had only offered it as a work truck option. The CrewCab configuration came with a 6.5-foot bed.

The Free Wheelin’ package offered custom side paint striping on the panels and upgraded tires and rims. Many owners loved it because they could customize their trucks. Ford offered a Free Wheelin’ Flareside version called the Classic Shorty.

Trim Levels

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 had lowered the truck’s height, they could offer a Camper Special Package for their 4x4s without fear that a stiff breeze might blow them over. Owners who wanted a camper package could slide a 12-foot camper onto the trunk’s bed and take off to explore the open road.


Built on independent front twin-I-beam suspension underneath, the truck had 2.5-inch springs on the rear wheels designed for heavier payload capacities. The double-walled construction offered additional strength for the bed. Ford kept rounded edges of the cargo bed’s interior to give owners the ability to wash their trucks and keep water from pooling on the floor.

Capacity and Payload

The 1979 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.


The f 250’s truck interior was color-coordinated bench seating with color-coordinated door panels. The bench seat configuration in the SuperCab allowed additional passengers to sit in the back, or owners could convert the back seating to a flat base for additional storage.  With seven inches of standard foam inside the seats, the feel was luxurious for a truck. The carpet on the floor, which Ford had first introduced into their Lincoln and Ford sedans, added to the nice atmosphere, even if it wasn’t very practical.

Instrumentation panels were easy to read, and the faux wood trim edging on the dash was reminiscent of the work in many of Ford’s sedans. (The tilt-steering wheel added to this impression, making entrance and exit easier). Control components were convenient and easy to reach. Ford continued with the integrated CB radio as an option, but most truck owners passed on the factory unit, preferring their own. (CB radio was fading quickly by this time). Air conditioning was an option for about a third of the F250s.

What Were the Production Numbers for the 1979 Ford F250?

The units were built in North America, Argentina, and Australia.  

Pickup No. of Units
F250 Regular Cab 103,582
F250 Reg. Cab 4x4 76,092
F250 SuperCab 29,876
F250 SuperCab 4x4 8,755

While there are no official records, it is estimated that less than 2,000 CrewCab units were made.

What Are The Model Options for the 1979 F 250?

The following were some of the options for the 1979 Ford F250.

Options Number of Units With Option
Automatic Transmission 60.8%
4 Speed Manual Transmission 38.6%
Power Disc Brakes 100%
Power Steering 96.6%
V8 engines 91.5%
Trailer Towing Equipment 6.6%
Four Wheel Drive 40.9%
Air Conditioning 36.6%
CB radio 1.2%
AM radio 43.3%
Cruise Control 13.9%

What are the Specifications of the 1975 F250?

Below are some specifications of the 1979 Ford F250.

Item Specification
300 cu in 4.9 L inline 6 101 HP - 223 lbs/ft of torque
351 cu in 5.8 L V8 136 HP - 243 lb/ft of torque
400 cu in 6.6 L V8 169 HP - 327 lbs/ft of torque
460 cu 7.5 L V8 239 HP - 341 lb/ft of torque
Length 212 inches
Wheelbase 132.99 inches - 139 inches
Wheelbase Width 64.5 - 64.8 inches
GVW Weight 7700 lbs.
Payload 3,625 lbs.
Towing capacity 4500 lbs with braked trailers
Cargo Space (8’ bed) 73.6 cu inches
Fuel Type Regular or unleaded gasoline
4x4 Optional
No. of cylinders (Regular Cab) 6 (300 cu inline) - 8 (351 cu V8)
No. of cylinders (Super Cab) 8 (460 cu V8)
# of seats 3 - (Bench style - Regular Cab)
6 - (Bench style - SuperCab)
6 - (Bench style - CrewCab)
Transmission 4 - speed Manual or Cruise-O-Matic
Front suspension Independent coil spring
Rear suspension Leaf spring
Front Brakes Disc
Suspension I beam
Tire size 265/75 R 16 or 235/80 R 17
Rim Size 6J x 16.5 E10
Air Conditioning Optional
Body Type Pickup
Doors 2 (Reg./SuperCab - 4 on CrewCab
MSRP $5,404 plus tax