1978 Ford F100 F150
Making headlines in 1978 was the Ford Pinto exploding gas tanks and the movie Grease. A gallon of gas cost about 63 cents, and the Sony Walkman made it's debut.
Fortunately for all web sites today and especially this one :-), 1978 was the year of the first computer bulletin board system (BBS), which was the precursor to the modern world wide web.
1978 was a great year for Ford trucks. Ford launched the Built Ford Tough slogan, and sold 864,000 F-Series trucks, which set a new record. Ford also celebrated it's 75th anniversary and made it known through a national sales promotion campaign.
1978 Ford F100 Video
Here is a video of a very nice 1978 F-100 Custom pickup in red that has been fully restored. We are not affiliated with the video producer.
What's New For 1978
There were no major changes for 1978, but there were a number of smaller changes and upgrades for the F-100, F-150, F-250, F-350 F-Series lineup.
The F-Series trucks received a new grille and square headlights (except on Custom level trucks). The split-style grille was now gone. If you got the optional chrome grille, you also got bright (chrome) headlight surrounds as seen on the above photo.
1978 Ford F-150 Ranger Lariat
New for 1978 was an available 4-speed overdrive manual transmission. The 1978 Ford F-Series brochure states: "Ford's new optional 4-speed over-drive manual transmission makes driving fun. It's mighty thrifty, too. Overdrive reduces piston travel per mile for less engine wear."
Ford also offered a complete, factory-installed CB radio for '78. The AM radio received a digital display with clock. Also now available was an illuminated vanity mirror with high/low adjustment, and an optional tilt steering wheel
In addition, 4-wheel-drive is made available on the SuperCab pickup. And, the Free Wheeling Sytside Package "B" included yellow painted styled steel 15" wheels. There were new 10-hole forged aluminum wheels as an option.
A top-of-the-line luxury trim level, the "Ranger Lariat" was also introduced. The trim level was the "new luxury leader of the line", and included deluxe two-tone paint, side cowl carpeting, door map pockets, extra insulation on the color-keyed vinyl headliner, "smart Picton cloth seat upholstery trimmed with super-soft vinyl", special Lariat emblems, and black tailgate applique. The Lariat name would continue to be used for decades on F-Series trucks.
The Free Wheeling Styleside is made available for 1978. Here is a quote from the 1978 F-Series vehicle brochure:
Free Wheeling Truckin'
For fantastic, tough good looks - look to Ford's Free Wheeling Pickups. Rainbow stripe Stylesides and pinstripe sporty Flaresides.
Free Wheeling Styleside Package "A" includes: colorful "rainbow" bodyside tape stripe, unique interior, blackout grille andblack front bumper (an optional black rear contour or step bumper is required). Want more? Choose Free Wheeling Styleside Package "B" and you'll add a black GT bar, five macho painted styled steel wheels in your choice of white or yellow and a spare tire lock.
Or you can design your own trick truck by slecting these Free Wheeling items that are also available as seperate options:
- Rainbow tape stripe (Stylesides)
- GT bar (Stylesides)
- Forged aluminum wheels (4) 5-slot brushed or 10-hole polished
- Styled steel wheels (5), 15 x 6, 15 x 8 available after Nov. 1, 1977
- Step bumper
- And more...
1978 Ford F150 Ranger Free Wheeling Styleside Package
1978 Ford F-Series Model Lineup
All models and trims carried over from 1977 - F-100, F-150, F-250, and F-350, however added in 1978 was a Ranger Lariat trim level. All four trim levels (Custom, Ranger, Ranger XLT, and Ranger Lariat) were available with all models, although the Custom & Ranger XLT trim levels were not available in Crew Cab form.
As another note, the 1978 Bronco was redesigned and is now based off the F-100/F-150. The Bronco was only offered with the 351M & 400 cid engines.
1978 Ford F-150 Ranger Yellow & White Two-Tone
1978 F-Series Engine / Powertrains
The powertrain options were pretty much the same as in 1977.
old-Powertrain options were also a carryover from 1977, though 1978 would mark the end of the line for both the 360 and 390 cubic-inch engine. Horsepower was still in short supply, though torque levels remained strong enough to keep the beefier F-Series models a good choice for moderate to heavy hauling or towing. The 300 cubic-inch inline six cylinder was standard in all Regular Cab two-wheel drive models. SuperCabs and four-wheel drive versions of the F-100 received the 360 V-8 as standard.
Transmissions ranged from the standard issue three-speed manual for all two-wheel drive models except the F-350, which used a four-speed manual along with the four-wheel drive trucks. The SelectShift three-speed automatic was an option for any F-Series pickup.
4.9 liter / 300 cid I-6
|F-100 / F-150 / F-250 / F-350||
5.0 liter / 302 cid V-8
|F-100 / F-150 Reg Cab, F-150 SuperCab||
5.8 liter / 351 cid V-8
|F-100 / F-150 / F-250 / F-350||
6.6 liter / 400 cid V-8
|F-100 / F-150 / F-250 / F-350||
7.5 liter / 460 cid V-8
|F-150 / F-250 / F-350||
1978 Ford F-150 Standard Features & Available Options
Major standard features include:
- 300 cubic inch six cylinder engine
- Three-speed manual transmission
- Twin I-Beam front suspension
- Power brakes
- Fresh air heater/defroster
- Instrument panel padding
- Window drip moldings
- Color-keyed door panels with integral armrests
- Seat belts
- Two-speed windshield wipers with washers
- Hub caps
- Chrome front bumper
- No-rust front fender liners
Major options / packages include:
- Air conditioning
- Recreation swing-out and low-mount western mirrors
- 40-channel CB radio (regular cab)
- Illluminated vanity mirror
- Speed control
- Sliding rear window
- Tool stowage box in curbside of pickup box skirt (8ft styleside)
- Tilt steering wheel
- Sport steering wheel (brushed spokes, simulated leather wrapped)
- Maintenance free battery
- SelectShift Cruise-O-Matic (provides a choice of automatic or manual shifting)
- Slide-out spare tire carrier
- Flip-open rear SuperCab windows
- 10-hole forged aluminum 15" wheels
- Engine blcok heater
- Free Wheeling Packages "A" and "B"
- Box Cover (cap style)
- Custom: Bright wheel lip moldings
- SuperCab: rear seats
- Convenience package (intermittent wipers, day/night rearview mirror, door map pockets)
- Electric rear window defroster
- Visibility / Light group (glove box, ashtray, under instrument panel, engine compartment, and cargo box lights)
- Northland Special includes engine block heater, -35 degree antifreeze, 68 amp-hr battery, 60 amp alternatior and limited slip rear axle
- Handling Package (front stabilizer bar, HD front and rear shocks, HD front springs)
- Super Cooling Package (available with 5.8L and bigger V8's)
- Trailer towing packages
- Amber cab clearance ligths (five)
- Protection Package (bright door edge guards, front bumper guards and rub strip)
- Security Group (locking gas cap, glove box door, inside hood release and spare tire)
- Chrome tie-down hooks (8)
Available exterior paint color choices for 1978 Ford trucks include the following (Note: Maroon, Bright Yellow and Tangerine are available on Special order at extra cost, and Wimbeldon White may be used as the accent color for any exterior color except Silver Metallic):
- Raven Black
- Wimbledon White
- Candyapple Red
- Castillo Red
- Silver Metallic
- Midnight Blue Metallic
- Light Blue
- Bahama Blue
- Light Jade
- Dark Jade Metallic
- Chrome Yellow
- Medium Copper
- Dark Brown Metallic
- Dark Cinnamon Glow
- Jade Glow