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45,000 Miles Later, Our Long-Term Ford F-150 Hybrid Still Rules

Even if this one's technically already out of date …

2021 Ford F-150 PowerBoost Hybrid
  • We've put nearly 45,000 miles on our long-term Ford F-150 PowerBoost.
  • After all this time — and a refresh that should have made it feel dated — it's still great.
  • Plus, our truck has turned out to be a great value.

When we added a F-150 hybrid for our long-term test fleet in 2021, we planned to keep it for about a year and 20,000 miles. We typically sell our long-term cars once we're through with a year of testing, but Big Red (the nickname I've given it) turned out to be so gosh-darn capable, usable and idiot-proof, we simply haven't been able to part ways with it.

We've now racked up nearly 45,000 miles (43,775 miles exactly as of this writing), and this truck still proves to be a champ. It's been in drag races (where it actually beat its bigger sibling, the Raptor, on dirt of all things), done towing tests, been used as a long-haul road-tripper, helped out in countless moves (including the one I just completed), and plenty more in between. 

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So, how's it fared since our last major update? Well, Big Red isn't as readily abused as some other pickups out there (you can find used 2021 F-150s for sale with over 100,000 miles on them already), but sometimes, things break. Still, aside from the blank infotainment screen we reported on way back in 2022, our F-150 has been rock solid. We haven't had to visit the dealer for anything other than routine checkups — at least, not since our APIM (accessory protocol image module) was replaced under warranty. 

The only thing worth mentioning was when our F-150 had to go under the knife, but this time it was because of some damage on rear quarter panel that we caused (and not intentionally, unlike last time). It was nothing major, just some noticeable scratches and a little deformation we wanted to get sorted out. We worked with a local body shop and the F-150 was in and out in just a week. All in all, the repairs totaled $1,886.20, and the truck came back looking fresh as ever.

2021 Ford F-150 Hybrid front 3/4

There's a new one, but …

Ford introduced a hefty refresh of the F-150 for 2024, and while it'd be easy to assume that we'd swap our truck for a fresh one, we're still rocking with Big Red. Why? It comes down to a few things. The first is, even though there are plenty of new features, the changes to the 2024 F-150 aren't that substantial. We typically go for total redesigns or brand-new cars when we enter something into our long-term fleet. But there's another good reason, too.

Back in 2021, you could get the hybrid powertrain on less expensive F-150 trim levels. Our truck is a lower-grade XLT model with plenty of extra fixins' like navigation, a tow package, a 360-degree camera suite, a spray-in bedliner, and 20-inch dark alloy wheels. It cost us $66,285 when we first took delivery.

Even though the hybrid engine was our big-ticket add-on, you could have, in theory, spent less than $50,000 to get a PowerBoost F-150 back then — the base price of our truck was $44,155 and the hybrid a $4,495 option. In 2024, you have to spend at least $68,035 because you have to go for the pricier Lariat model in order to get hybrid power. And that's before you add in desirables from the $5,055 Lariat High equipment package and the $1,095 FX4 off-road package (which our truck also has). 

2021 Ford F-150 Hybrid rear 3/4

So even though it's technically "the old model," Big Red has proven to not only be a faithful workhorse, gear hauler, support vehicle, and comfy daily driver, it's also turned into a fantastic value over the last few years. 

There will come a day when we say goodbye to our F-150 hybrid, and for me, it's going to be a sad one. It's not as well loved as our Shelby GT500 or our Corvette Stingway, but that's the life of the pickup. It does thankless work over and over again and all it asks for in return is a quick fill every 500 or so miles. (We've averaged just over 20 mpg over the last three-plus years.) So this is my thank you to Big Red, our loyal, salt-of-the-earth companion that never says no, never gets tired, and has never (majorly) let us down. 

2021 Ford F-150 PowerBoost Hybrid rear 3/4