There are major distinctions between the Ford F-150 of the US and its Mexican Lobo, but the main reason is to make it sound cooler.
The Ford F-Series isn’t all that hot in Mexico. Which is kind of strange because why would something that sells so well in the US, not do equally well in Mexico?
So, okay, let’s rephrase what we said, the Ford F-Series isn’t all that big a hit in Mexico, unless it exists as the Ford Lobo, and there’s a whole howling story behind the name if you excuse the pun. Obviously, the idea was to make it sound way cooler than an F-150, to make it appeal to a demographic whose main interest is cool.
There are also major distinctions between the Ford F-150 of the US and its Mexican twin, the Lobo, and we’ll get into that soon enough.
But for now, know that you do head to the south of the Border, there’s a wolfish beast that lurks around every corner and its called the Ford Lobo. And it’s one you’d love to drive…
The Story Of The Ford F-150 & The Lobo
Go to Mexico, and you’ll find that this country also adopted the Ford F-150 as one of its bestselling trucks, along with all of its features, for you’ll spot a lot of them. Only you’ll find them existing as the Ford F-150 as well and the Ford Lobo too. So what was the idea of turning some of the Ford F-150 into the Ford Lobo in Mexico?
In the ‘90s, amidst flagging sales, Ford decided that perhaps rebranding the F-150 in Mexico may bring about a revival. So it decided to go for a name that instantly attracted a younger demographic and had a certain cool quotient about it. Ford decided on Lobo, and Lobo is Mexican for a wolf. Think ‘90s young Latino male, and you can guess why Ford decided on this name.
This kind of strategy is not a new one and Ford has often employed. For example, the Ford Fusion is also sold as the Ford Mondeo elsewhere in the world. Or the Ford Everest, is one of the best selling SUVs in India, as the Ford Endeavour.
So sometimes, a name change becomes a necessary tactic for better sales. One thinks of the Lobo and imagines a howling wolf across a moonlit desert, and cars simply do not get more masculine than this especially since they are racing across roads bracketed by the desert.
The Ford Lobo launch coincided with Cinco de Mayo to make it even more attractive and region-specific, and it did bear some design elements like a billet grille, monochromatic looks, and unique 17-inch aluminum wheels.
How Is The Ford Lobo Different?
The first thing about the Ford Lobo is that it comes in only in the XLT trim upwards. The base trim of the F-150 isn’t branded as the Lobo, it is still sold in Mexico as the F-150. But with the Ford Lobo being a better trim, the wolf of Mexico is an elite beast, so to speak.
Not all engines of the Ford F-150 are available in the Lobo, plus the diesel and the hybrid variant haven’t made it to the Mexican shores to date, though talks are on.
There are also some minute design differences put into place to categorize the Ford Lobo as a whole other vehicle from the rather down-market Ford F-150 in Mexico. Along with Mexico, the Ford Lobo is also black-marketed to parts of Europe because who does not want a Ford F-150 that is also a wolf?
Since the Lobo is the Ford F-150 only, it shares in the triumphs as well as the problems that come with the F-150.
Ford Lobo Specs
The drivetrain lineup of the Lobo is pretty much the same as the Ford F-150 in the US, with the smallest option being a 3.5-liter turbocharged V6, belching out 375 horses and 470 ft-lb torque. This comes on the Lariat and the Platinum. The 3.3-liter unit in the US is not an option in Mexico. The XLT trim comes with the Ford V8 that offers 395 hp and 400 ft-lb of torque and remains one of the most powerful trucks ever in Mexico as well.