SCORE Journal

SCORE Journal-August 2019

SCORE Journal - The Official Publication of SCORE Off-Road Racing

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 98 of 109

The Tremor Approaches Ford Adds More Off-Road Capability With Its Tremor Package For the 2020 Super Duty Pickup By Dan Sanchez Photos Courtesy Ford Motor Co. Walk along the pit area at any SCORE race and you are likely to find a Ford Super Duty pickup as the team’s chase vehicle. It takes a heavy-duty 3/4-ton truck to carry team members, tools, spare tires and parts to pre-determined locations across the Baja desert. Reliability is key as racer can’t afford to miss a pit-stop, simply because the chase vehicle got stuck or couldn’t make it to the pit stop because of rough terrain. While Ford designed its F-150 Raptor to be the company’s pinnacle of off-road performance, they announced that the 2020 Super Duty will be available with a new Tremor Off-Road Package. But before SCORE fans and hardcore off-roaders chuckle at the announcement, thinking the company is adding a new pair of shocks and badging, the Tremor package offers some real upgrades that are welcome for the avid Baja backcountry enthusiast. According to Ford truck group marketing manager Todd Eckert, the Super Duty Tremor provides more towing and payload capacity than the Ram Power Wagon and is specifically designed for off-road. “Tremor balances what customers demand in terms of work with what they need in the great outdoors,” says Eckert. “We designed this truck with more ground clearance, bigger shocks, bigger tires, and more off-road capability.” The Tremor Off-Road package includes 35-inch diameter Goodyear Wrangler Duratec tires. According to Ford’s marketing team, this is the largest diameter tire offered on a heavy-duty pickup, and they are mounted on a set of 18-inch black matte wheels. While this alone isn’t enough to swoon the desert off-road establishment, Ford engineers added that with a two-inch front end lift and a shorter front air dam, the Super Duty Tremor offers 10.8 inches of ground clearance and what they claim is the best approach and departure angles of any Super Duty ever, measured at 31.65 degrees and 24.51 degrees. That may pique some interest but Ford continued to add to the Tremor package, including progressive-rate springs for increased towing capacity and improved body control over rough terrain that includes rock and rutted trails. The Tremor Super Duty also has a tuned rear stabilizer bar that works with the truck’s lower spring rate and is designed to reduce head tossing as the vehicle maneuvers over large obstacles and when it’s under severe suspension articulation. To seal the deal with hardcore off-roaders that the truck is meant to be serious, Ford added custom twin-tube shock absorbers that feature a large 1.7-inch piston to reduce body motion. Engineers claim the shocks offer increased oil volume that also keeps temperatures low, while the larger cross-section improves responsiveness. While these aren’t King external reservoir shocks, Ford has heard what off-road drivers need and added that these shocks work at low speeds, and are specifically tuned for soft dampening and hard impacts. The shocks also feature internal hydraulic bump stops making them much better than what’s been offered in an “off-road” package in the past. The Tremor package also includes some drivetrain upgrades, such as a locking rear differential with electronic shift-on-the-fly control. But this isn’t just any locking diff. Ford opted for a Dana limited-slip model that works with the vehicle’s computer to sense when a tire is losing traction and adds braking to send power to the wheel with traction. When combined with the Super Duty’s TorqShift 10-speed automatic transmission, the 2020 Tremor can adapt to normal driving around town and with selectable drive modes, shifting and traction can be changed for icy conditions, fuel economy, towing, and low-traction conditions like in deep snow or sand. The Dana locking differential will come into play with the Tremor’s rock-crawl mode which is designed to work in 4x4 low and is simply operated via the TorqShift 10-speed automatic. Trucks equipped with an optional 7.3-liter gas engine, have a 53:1 craw ratio, while 6.7 liter equipped diesel models have a 44:1 craw ratio. If the Tremor’s trail capability isn’t impressive enough, Ford added a Trail Control feature that is used in the F-150 Raptor and Ranger. It automatically controls the vehicle’s throttle and individual wheel braking as needed so drivers can focus on trail obstacles and navigation. The system works from 1 to 20 mph and acts much like a cruise control but one that can provide optimum traction when necessary. The Super Duty Tremor package can be ordered with XLT, Lariat, King Ranch and Platinum models of Ford’s F-250 and F-350 Super Duty pickups with 4x4 drivetrains and single-rear-wheel SuperCrew models with a 6.75-foot bed. On F-250 models the Tremor package requires the high-capacity trailer tow package, but the package also includes running boards, extended axle-vent tubes and skid plates a la FX4 models. Additional hardware includes off-road running boards that tuck up next to the body for damage control, extended-axle vent tubes and the same beefy skid plates as fitted to FX4 models. SCORE racers and fans can easily see the Super Duty Tremor as a viable off-road vehicle, as well as one capable of outfitting with tools and components to be a reliable chase truck that can handle the rigors of Baja. Throw on a set of LED lights and the Super Duty Tremor can turn into the perfect hauler or simply tackle trails on its own with confidence. Ford says that the Tremor Off-Road package will be available later this year. SJ

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of SCORE Journal - SCORE Journal-August 2019