2008 Ford F-450 Super Duty Review

Pros & Cons

  • Class-leading towing and hauling capacities, relatively small turning circle, strong performance, comfortable ride when towing, standard trail-brake controller.
  • Wider front end than F-250/F-350 makes F-450 more unwieldy in traffic and parking lots, stiff ride when unladen.
List Price Range
$24,987 - $35,966

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Edmunds' Expert Review

Do most people need a heavy-duty pickup truck with a maximum towing capacity of 24,500 pounds? Probably not. Just in case you think you do, there's the 2008 Ford F-450 Super Duty.

Vehicle overview

In previous years, the Ford F-450 Super Duty has been sold in cab and chassis form (the unfinished one that comes with naked frame rails behind the cab) to emergency vehicle manufacturers, tow truck companies and moving truck makers. For the 2008 Super Duty's major update, however, Ford has decided to make an F-450 variant available with a pickup bed and market it directly to the general consumer. Although it shares sheet metal with its F-250 and F-350 Super Duty siblings, the F-450 has work capacities that are simply astounding. Able to tow up to 24,500 pounds and haul 6,000 pounds, the F-450 provides those who own a fleet of horses, a large boat or a luxury condo on wheels a way to transport their prized possessions with ease.

The 2008 Ford F-450 Super Duty benefits from the same revisions made to the F-250 and F-350 Super Dutys, namely a more aggressively styled front end and a nicer cabin that offers more luxury and storage than before. The available PowerStroke diesel engine is larger and more potent as well. It's now at 6.4 liters (versus 6.0 liters last year) and features twin turbochargers (a small one for quick response off the line and a larger one that kicks in to beef up the midrange) and common-rail fuel injection with high-tech injectors. Because these injectors administer fuel in up to five metered spurts per combustion cycle rather than all at once, Ford claims reliability is improved, emissions are reduced and the engine even runs more quietly. Another benefit is quick startup -- this diesel can fire up in under 2 seconds at minus-20 degrees F.

There are a number of key differences, however, that allow the F-450 to perform its more incredible feats of strength. The front track is more than 6 inches wider to allow greater load capacity, yet the front wheels can turn more than those in the 250/350, meaning the F-450 has a smaller turning circle (51.5 feet versus 56.5 feet). The heavy-duty, commercial-grade tires run at 80 psi and don't contribute much in the way of absorbing bumps, so the F-450 gets much longer, multistage leaf springs out back (as do the 250/350) that do their part for ride comfort. Understandably, the F-450 still rides stiffly when unladen compared to a smaller series truck, but that is the price one pays for such impressive work capacity.

The bottom line is that this is way more truck than most pickup consumers would ever need. If you don't require the immense towing capacity of the F-450 chassis, the less bulky and less expensive F-250 and F-350 pickups offer the same revamped interior and exterior styling, and both can be equipped with the new 6.4-liter PowerStroke diesel engine. But if you're considering retirement in a three-axle fifth-wheel travel trailer with dual sliders and granite counter tops, and want a leather-lined workhorse to effortlessly yank it about, the new 2008 Ford F-450 Super Duty pickup deserves serious consideration.

2008 Ford F-450 Super Duty models

The 2008 Ford F-450 Super Duty pickup comes only in a Crew Cab body style, with a long (8-foot) bed. All F-450s come with a dual-rear-wheel setup, which allows more weight to be carried in the bed while providing greater stability while towing a heavy trailer.

Three trim levels are offered: base XL, midlevel XLT and luxurious Lariat. The XL is meant for those who just need a bare-bones work truck; it comes standard with plain vinyl upholstery, a basic AM/FM radio, 19.5-inch alloy wheels with commercial-grade tires, a heavy-duty towing package and the Tow Command system, which seamlessly integrates the control of the trailer brakes with those on the truck. Additional comforts such as air-conditioning are optional, or one could move up to the XLT, which adds cloth upholstery, an MP3 audio jack, a 40/20/40 front bench, air-conditioning, a CD player, cruise control, chrome wheels and full power accessories. High-line Lariats come with leather upholstery, power front seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, power telescoping side mirrors and foglamps.

Numerous options, such as reverse park assist, a power moonroof, a navigation system and a rear-seat DVD entertainment system, are also available. The King Ranch Package provides two-tone paint, 20-inch alloy wheels and fancy leather seating and trim inspired by a western saddle.

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2008 Highlights

The Ford F-450 Super Duty pickup, previously a commercial-grade vehicle sold in cab and chassis form, debuts for the general public for 2008. Boasting even more extreme work capacity than its already rugged siblings, the F-450 Super Duty benefits from the same major 2008 Super Duty upgrades, such as a stronger chassis that's coated to resist corrosion, a revised rear suspension that improves ride and handling, and a bigger PowerStroke turbodiesel engine that makes an impressive 350 horsepower and 650 pound-feet of torque. Also new this year are higher-grade cabin materials, a standard MP3 audio jack, available power telescoping/folding side mirrors and a unique drop-down tailgate step that makes access to the bed easier.

Performance & mpg

Standard (and the only engine offered) on the 2008 Ford F-450 is the 6.4-liter PowerStroke turbodiesel V8, which makes 350 hp and 650 lb-ft of torque. A six-speed manual transmission is standard and a five-speed automatic is optional. There is also a choice of either two- or four-wheel drive. Properly equipped, an F-450 Super Duty can tow up to 24,500 pounds and haul 6,000 pounds in its bed.


Antilock disc brakes are standard, but neither side nor head curtain airbags are available. Power-adjustable pedals are optional on XLT and Lariat models (equipped with automatic transmission), as are rear parking sensors.


For such a large vehicle, the 2008 Ford F-450 is relatively easy to handle, thanks in part to a turning circle that's smaller than that of the 250 and 350 Super Duty trucks. Still, maneuvering in traffic and parking is tough, as its front end is considerably wider than that of its siblings. An unladen F-450 has a stiff ride, the downside of a chassis that has such impressive towing and hauling capacities. But with a trailer hooked up to it, the F-450 rides more smoothly, and the PowerStroke turbodiesel performs admirably, even when said trailer weighs 20,000 pounds and is being pulled up 6 percent grades.


A rugged, industrial theme marks the revised cabin, and materials quality is generally good. Chrome accents surround the gauges and air vents, while the new center stack puts controls in easier reach. Dual door pockets and a massive center console/armrest address our previous gripes about inadequate storage. In fact, the center console box is now big enough to accommodate a laptop and/or hanging files. Folding the rear seats up reveals a flip-out utility tray that keeps the load floor flat.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 2008 Ford F-450 Super Duty.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

Found On the Road Dead
Lariat 4dr Crew Cab 4WD LB DRW (6.4L 8cyl Turbodiesel 6M)
I bought this when my 2005 f 350 blue its motor the third time while stuck in Wyoming with six horses and a family in a motel, the 2008 got me home but over the last three years it broke down seven times, four radiators, two turbos an engine and now another break down and a new engine, now its 2000 miles out of extended warranty. It is unreliable, poorly built and only a fool would recommend it, the ones that do have never used it for long hauls or extensive ranch work which is what it was built to do.....FORD found on the road dead how true is that. Ford should be ashamed to sell this crap and a class action suit should be had. 29 repair items this time around....
Probably worst mistake in my life
Lariat 4dr Crew Cab 4WD LB DRW (6.4L 8cyl Turbodiesel 6M)
Since 11/07, truck has been in shop 7-8 times. Last time it had the entire head replaced; took about 30 days. Absolutely NO POWER to this date. Also have an 08 GMC 2500 Duramax, blows this Ford out of water with power. I am sad to find all these posts as I am doing research tonight on my new truck- 2009 Sierra 3500. Will be at GMC tomorrow getting trade-in appraisal for it. I do excavating so I am daily towing 10-12k trailer w/ either a mini-ex or skid-steer. Absolutely a dog in power. Took to Ford dealer several times, they say it's fine. Get literally 7-8 mpg avg. GMC gets 11-12 towing same exact load w/ tons more power. If you love yourself, PLEASE do not buy this truck.
Another one bites the dust
Lariat 4dr Crew Cab 4WD LB DRW (6.4L 8cyl Turbodiesel 6M)
I bought it in Texas thanks to a blown head gasket on my 05 F350 that left me stranded (5th time) and I had to get my 40' trailer to NM by the next day. Since the repair would have been a 3 day event I bought the 08 F450 off the dealer's lot. At first all was well, the truck pulled better than the 350 and it ran perfectly. It was trouble free for the first 4 years I owned it aside from it's abysmal fuel efficiency (6 MPG towing, the older 350 averaged around 10 with the same trailer). Then, things started to happen. A sensor crippled the truck. Repair. A turbo blew. Repair. Oil leak. Repair. DPE failure leading to blown engine. Currently broken, 66k and 10 days out of warranty.
Defective 6.4L Engine life expectancy = 100,000
Lariat 4dr Crew Cab 4WD LB DRW (6.4L 8cyl Turbodiesel 6M)
After my last review (below) and after investing $20,000 for a new engine and being refused a better warranty then the 2 year warranty they gave us, the truck had another $3500 repair, 8 days after the 2 year warranty was up, and would not honor the warranty. Penske, the dealer, did cut the cost in 1/2..probably because they felt sorry for us after benefiting from so many repairs made to the truck. Ford, on the other hand, makes sure you can not reach a real person with real authority. I planned to take Ford to small claims, but we sold the truck instead and I decided I didn't want any more stress or grief trying to get Ford's attention. My husband & I were Ford truck "believers" for many years until 2016! From our past experience, we expected our 2008 F450 diesel (with the 6.4L engine), to take us into retirement and beyond until the engine blew up this year, with just over 100,000 miles! $18,455.66 later (this doesn't count the $7600 repair one year ago), and a lousy 2 year warranty on the new (same defective engine), we found out that this engine is "expected" to fail around 100,000 miles making it the worst engine in the Ford truck line. (Our 1999 F350 is still on the road at 250,000+ miles!) I tried to contact Ford's customer service (which is really their customer dis-service as the one answering the phone only has a first name and no boss to appeal to). My expectation was to get a reasonable 10 year/100,000 mile warranty on the new engine instead of a crappy 2 year warranty (which is equivalent to a 30,000 mile warranty). The mechanics told us they could bullet proof the replacement engine, after the 2 year warranty expired, for about $8000! My question is, why isn't the replacement engine "bullet proofed" already? What was once a great company with integrity has been replaced by fraud and failure. I am embarrassed to be driving a Ford after my humble retirement account has been robbed of $20,000.

More about the 2008 Ford F-450 Super Duty
More About This Model

When it comes to sales, Ford's F-Series truck has been the dominant force in the U.S. truck market for quite some time. And if you want to know why, the new 2008 Ford F-450 Super Duty pickup stands as a prime example.

Sure, most people will never need a truck with the sheer brute strength of the 2008 Ford F-450 Super Duty pickup with its 6.4-liter PowerStroke diesel and 24,500-pound towing capacity. But that's not the point. The point is that some people -- especially snowbirds with huge fifth-wheel trailers -- have shown a need for the ultimate towing machine.

Making their own bed
In the past, if you wanted an F-450 dually that didn't look like an industrial appliance, you had to convert a commercial-grade F-450 cab-chassis, the unfinished one that comes with naked frame rails behind the cab. Several companies make a tidy living from grafting standard F-350 8-foot beds (or even fiberglass replicas) onto the back of cab-chassis combinations. Unfortunately there are major problems involved.

First, a commercial chassis usually features a narrow standard frame with straight rails just 34 inches apart. A conventional civilian pickup actually employs wider-spaced frame rails because it doesn't have to be compatible with moving-van cargo boxes, tow-truck setups and other industrial gear. Bolting a typical pickup bed to a narrow cab-chassis frame requires hand labor and fabrication.

And then there is the wheelbase issue. An F-450 crew-cab cab-chassis measures 176.2 inches, while the equivalent F-350 spans only 172.4 inches. When an 8-foot box is adapted to the commercial chassis, there's a 4-inch gap behind the cab that has to be bridged with an obvious filler panel.

Ford solves both problems at once by making the F-450 Super Duty pickup in-house. For the back half of the frame, F-350-dimensioned rails bring the frame-spacing, bed mounts and wheelbase along with them. An 8-foot pickup box drops straight on, and the unsightly cab-gap is history.

Load handling redefined
Up front, the F-450 is all commercial grade. The 4x2 and 4x4 alike employ a radius-arm suspension setup to locate what Ford calls a "wide-frame monobeam," a very wide solid axle with coil springs. This design not only affords massive load-carrying capacity but also 45 degrees of steering lock.

As a result, the F-450 pickup has a tighter turning radius than comparable F-350 and -250 designs, some 51.5 feet versus 56.5 feet. During a side-by-side parking lot comparison between the two, the benefit is immediately apparent.

As expected, the components underpinning it all are mighty rugged. The F-450's commercial-grade 225/70R19.5F Continental tires are unsympathetically stiff and need to be run in the neighborhood of 80 psi. In order to regain the lost ride comfort, the progressive, multistage rear-leaf springs are 8 inches longer and have been carefully tuned to combine a reasonably comfortable ride with good load-carrying capacity.

It all adds up. The F-450 pickup, sold only with dual rear wheels, can pull up to 24,500 pounds with a gooseneck or fifth-wheel hitch, or 16,000 pounds with a conventional setup. An equivalent F-350 (a leader in towing capacity in its own class) manages 18,800 pounds and 15,000 pounds, respectively. Meanwhile, the F-450 shares the F-350's 6,000-pound payload.

After driving an F-450 pickup with and without a trailer, we're sure that while the unladen ride is better than it might otherwise be with a true commercial cab-chassis, it's still not ideally suited to daily driving. Considering the F-450's towing capability, this is totally understandable.

A magical transformation results when a 20,000-pound fifth-wheel trailer is clamped on, as was the case during our test-drive in Nevada. Not only does the truck's laden horizon remain parallel to the real one, the ride smoothes out and body motions are quite subdued.

Diff'rent power strokes
Motivating so much truck and so much payload takes some serious grunt. To that end, Ford has thoroughly reworked the PowerStroke V8 diesel. In fact, the camshaft is the only carryover part from the previous version.

A larger bore results in a displacement increase from 6.0 to 6.4 liters, and a forged crankshaft now spins in larger bearing journals and is connected to sturdier connecting rods. Four-valve cylinder heads sandwich multilayer steel head gaskets.

For this new V8, Ford employs common-rail direct injection and Piezo-electric injectors. Because the fuel is administered in up to five metered spurts per combustion cycle rather than all at once, reliability is improved, air emissions are reduced and the engine even runs quieter.

Twin-sequential turbochargers deliver 42 psi of boost. At low rpm, the smaller variable-geometry turbo spins up quickly to help with getaways from a stop. In the midrange of the V8's power band, a larger fixed-geometry unit joins in, eventually taking over at the top end of the power band. The exhaust exits through a flow-tuned particulate filter that screens out almost 97 percent of the diesel particulate emissions.

Deep breather
As a result, the 6.4-liter V8 delivers 350 horsepower at 3,000 rpm and a massive 650 pound-feet of torque at 2,000 rpm. While this is an impressive improvement over the 6.0-liter V8's 325 hp and 570 lb-ft, it merely levels the playing field. Chevy's 6.6-liter Duramax diesel V8 makes 360 ponies and 650 lb-ft of torque. And it's mated to a six-speed automatic, while the Ford's F-450 still has a five-speed automatic.

After we drove the F-450 for several runs up a sinuous 5-to-6-percent grade climbing out of Laughlin, Nevada, it was clear that the 20,000-pound load we were dragging wasn't leaving our mount breathless. Unencumbered, Ford claims a 1.0-second improvement in zero-to-60-mph time for the F-450 over last year's PowerStroke F-350. Based on our 2006 Heavy-Duty Truck Comparison Test, this performance suggests the F-450 will get to 60 mph in about 8.5 seconds, much like our Silverado 3500 Duramax.

But there's more to towing 24,500 pounds than horsepower and torque. Commercial suspension aside, the F-450 pickup trumps the Chevy by employing 4.88:1 final-drive ratio.

A large-capacity cooling system keeps the big diesel happy in its work. There are no fewer than six heat exchangers and a radiator that's 33 percent larger than last year. To ensure good airflow to the radiator, a new nose for the bodywork accommodates a grille with lots of openings, while the front bumper has been repositioned to ensure it doesn't obstruct airflow.

More options to choose from
The F-450 is not only massive on the outside but also massive (in design spirit, anyway) on the inside. A brand-new interior features a dash that carries lots of heavy-duty design themes, although it looks a bit overstated. On the plus side, the controls on the center stack are familiar and work well. And there are useful storage compartments everywhere.

For the first time, the new F-450 pickup cabin can be appointed with the full array of regular F-Series Super Duty options. It wasn't previously possible to get a cab-chassis conversion with factory-installed goodies like rear-seat entertainment, an auxiliary audio input jack and, of course, the King Ranch trim package. Now your ultracapable tow rig can be well-appointed, too.

If you don't need the towing capacity of the F-450 chassis, the F-250 and F-350 benefit from the same revamped interior and exterior styling, and both can be equipped with the new 6.4-liter PowerStroke diesel engine.

But if you're considering retirement in a three-axle fifth-wheel travel trailer with dual-sliders and granite counter tops, and want a leather-lined tow implement with all the trimmings to yank it about, the new 2008 Ford F-450 Super Duty pickup is the one to look at hard.

With 24,500 pounds of towing capacity, the 2008 Ford F-450 might well be the only factory-built, heavy-duty choice that you have.

Used 2008 Ford F-450 Super Duty Overview

The Used 2008 Ford F-450 Super Duty is offered in the following submodels: F-450 Super Duty Crew Cab. Available styles include Lariat 4dr Crew Cab 4WD LB DRW (6.4L 8cyl Turbodiesel 6M), XL 4dr Crew Cab 4WD LB DRW (6.4L 8cyl Turbodiesel 6M), XLT 4dr Crew Cab 4WD LB DRW (6.4L 8cyl Turbodiesel 6M), XL 4dr Crew Cab LB DRW (6.4L 8cyl Turbodiesel 6M), XLT 4dr Crew Cab LB DRW (6.4L 8cyl Turbodiesel 6M), and Lariat 4dr Crew Cab LB DRW (6.4L 8cyl Turbodiesel 6M).

What's a good price on a Used 2008 Ford F-450 Super Duty?

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Which used 2008 Ford F-450 Super Duties are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2008 Ford F-450 Super Duty for sale near. There are currently 2 used and CPO 2008 F-450 Super Duties listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $24,987 and mileage as low as 184889 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2008 Ford F-450 Super Duty.

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Should I lease or buy a 2008 Ford F-450 Super Duty?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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