The Ford F-250 Tremor Is Overkill in Every Sense of the Word
I love testing trucks. There’s something very satisfying about a full-size truck from one of the Big Three. I recently had the opportunity to spend a week in the 2020 Ford F-250 King Ranch with the Tremor off-road package. It’s big, obnoxious, and takes time to adjust to driving.
Do you need a Tremor? No, you do not. Do you want a Tremor? You might, but I’m guessing that there are very few of you that actually need one. I say that, because there’s just a tiny slice of the population that needs the capability that a Super Duty truck can afford while also having the ability to run buck wild over any terrain in the event of a zombie apocalypse. For most of us with normal truck needs, the Ford Raptor will do the trick nicely, and it’s easier to maneuver as well (anyone who has driven one will laugh at that - they're massive, too). Here’s why the Tremor is awesome, but complete overkill for nearly everyone.
There’s nothing about the F-Series Super Duty truck line that is small, and the Tremor package just serves to amplify that bulkiness. Start with the engine in my test truck: 7.3 liters of American gas V8. That’s an old-school engine size that makes old-school truck noises. Then, there’s the truck itself. The Tremor package brings 35-inch Goodyear Wrangler Duratrac tires, 10.8 inches of ground clearance, and the ability to tackle anything from mud to the cars of people who’ve crossed you. That size makes a difference in driving, too. I usually slather on the praise for Ford trucks for seeming to shrink around their driver, but that’s not the case here.
Ford trucks aren’t really all that cheap to begin with, especially the Super Duty line. I tested the F-250 King Ranch with a Crew Cab, which starts at $59,335 before destination, options, and taxes. Add the $3,975 Tremor package and big V8 to that, and the price almost scrapes $70,000. My test truck had a few more options tacked on for a grand total that reached nearly $80,000, and that’s not even the most you can spend. If you’ve spent any time studying the truck market the price won’t be that shocking, but to a newcomer there will be some sticker shock.
Do you need to tow 15,000 pounds? Probably not. Even on the low end, with the base V8, the F250 Crew Cab can pull 12,900 pounds. There are very few non-commercial owners that need that kind of capability. If you want to step up to the Powerstroke diesel - since you’ve come this far, why not - you’re looking at up to 20,000 pounds of towing capacity in the F-250 with four-wheel drive. Unless you’re aiming for the biggest bragging rights, that’s overkill.
You might read this and think that I’m a Tremor-hater, but that couldn’t be further from reality. I’m a fan, but I have to be real and say that for most of us, the Raptor is a better call. It’s also cheaper, though only just. Having said that, the ability to flex on nearly every other truck on the road is a tempting thing. How much is in my retirement account again?
I cover autos and technology for several outlets online and in print. My goal is to bring the complex and sometimes confusing automotive world into focus for everyone. The views and opinions expressed here are my own and may not align with the founders of Everyday Driver.