All-New Ford F-150 Boxlink, Led Box Lights and Remote Tailgate Release Revolutionize Truck Bed Cargo Management
BoxLink includes four lockable, die-cast zinc tie-down cleats, and provides a unique interface to the box for improved flexibility and organization, as well as additional locations for tie-downs.
“Rooted in the shape of the horse-drawn cart, the pickup truck box has been a standard, relatively unchanged fixture for nearly a century,” said Alana Strager, Ford program management analyst and co-inventor of the BoxLink system. “The industry’s acceptance of this shape meant the innovations we developed couldn’t alter the box, but rather needed to enhance and evolve its flexibility and modularity to create infinitely customizable solutions for hauling cargo.”
Perfecting the box
The BoxLink cargo management system allows for the customization of the pickup truck bed. A customer can attach to the BoxLink cleats in four locations, or hook directly to the BoxLink Interface plate with a bungee cord, S-hook or E-track fitting.
“Customers told us not to touch the box,” said Adrian Aguirre, Ford engineer and co-inventor of BoxLink. “They want to tailor it to their unique needs, and this system allows for easy adaptation to a variety of applications.”
BoxLink adds four additional tie-down locations in the box to complement the four fixed tie-down hooks carried over from the previous model, for a total of eight. Additionally, BoxLink is located on a reinforced area of the box at mid-level – accommodating the majority of cargo loads. Reinforcement of the cleats allows them to accommodate a horizontal (cross-box) load of 125 kilograms (275 lbs.) and a diagonal load of 272 kilograms (600 lbs.).
Available segment-first cargo ramps can be stowed on the sides of the pickup box via the BoxLink system and mounted quickly on the tailgate to enable easy loading of ATVs, motorcycles and mowers. The length of telescoping ramps can be extended or shortened to accommodate multiple loading positions.
An altogether better box
The all-new F-150’s cargo box features many other significant upgrades to make it more versatile and driver-friendly.
LED cargo box interior lighting allows for excellent visibility in the truck bed at night or when a bed cover or cap is used. A bed-mounted button, as well as one inside the cab, turns the lights on or off. Lariat Mid or Luxury, King Ranch and Platinum models feature a remote tailgate release that includes an LED spotlight integrated into the release handle that illuminates the trailer hitch – a much appreciated convenience when hooking up after dark.
An available power locking and remote tailgate can be released with the push of a button on the key fob to help customers when their hands are full – a first for a pickup. The tailgate is damped and drops down, hands-free, to a flat position when opened.
2015 F-150 XLT models and higher benefit from a power locking tailgate for improved security. The feature is available for XL series trucks as well.
Ford’s pioneering tailgate step has been redesigned to be fully integrated into the tailgate and virtually invisible when not in use – restoring the open tailgate as a flat work surface. Using the step is simple: Customers drop the tailgate into the down position, grab the bottom step, pull it straight out from the tailgate and drop it down into the step position – all in one easy motion. The grab handle is now housed inside the tailgate, keeping the inner surface of the tailgate uniformly flat.
BoxLink designed for endless customization
Ford is allowing aftermarket manufacturers to leverage its BoxLink system to develop even more customized solutions for the pickup truck bed.
“This is an open system,” explained Strager. “We have facilitated the aftermarket in a way that has never been done before by an automaker. The possibilities are endless.”