First look: 2023 Ford F-150 Lariat breaks cover at Finke Desert Race

First look: 2023 Ford F-150 Lariat breaks cover at Finke Desert Race
First look: 2023 Ford F-150 Lariat breaks cover at Finke Desert Race

Here is our best look yet at the right-hand-drive Ford F-150 coming soon to Australian showrooms.

The right-hand-drive version of the Ford F-150 has been put through its most unusual torture test on Australian soil so far.

One of the early prototype test vehicles – which has already been converted to right-hand-drive – is being used as a tow rig for the Ford Ranger Raptor campaign in this weekend’s Finke Desert Race, an off-road enduro that runs between Alice Springs and the remote town of Finke.

MORE: Ford Ranger Raptor to take on Finke Desert Race

As is normal industry practice, the right-hand-drive interior appeared to be finished in prototype trim for early validation and ‘proof of concept’ purposes.

However, the test vehicle has provided our best look yet at what Australian buyers can expect when the 2023 Ford F-150 Lariat arrives in local showrooms.

Twin widescreen digital displays – for the infotainment system and instrument cluster – dominate the cabin.

Barring the shiny plastics rather than grained plastics – which are normal at this point in the development cycle – it is apparent the right-hand-drive Ford F-150 is well and truly taking shape and appears to be on track for local deliveries later this year.

As previously reported, the 2023 Ford F-150 sold in Australia will be powered by a twin-turbo 3.5-litre V6 petrol engine paired to a 10-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive.

Although the Ford F-150 will go head-to-head in Australia with V8-powered rivals – the Ram 1500 and Chevrolet Silverado 1500 – Ford says its pick-up will deliver the same or better performance but with better fuel economy.

Drive only had a brief look at the 2023 Ford F-150 Lariat prototype – which was equipped with off-road wheels and tyres as a support vehicle for the off-road event – but it is clear the company is well-progressed with local development.

As previously reported, left-hand-drive examples of the Ford F-150 will be imported into Australia by Ford and then remanufactured to right-hand-drive by third-party RMA in a new facility not far from where the Ford Falcon production line in Broadmeadows fell silent in October 2016.

Earlier this week Ford announced the first shipment of F-150 pick-ups destined for Australia had already left Detroit and are on their way to Melbourne to start the conversion process, before eventually being delivered to Ford’s national network of 180 dealers.

MORE: First shipment of Ford F-150 pick-ups on their way Down Under
MORE: Ford F-150 price and specifications for Australia

The post First look: 2023 Ford F-150 Lariat breaks cover at Finke Desert Race appeared first on Drive.

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