Buying a pickup truck with an extended cab might seem like a good idea for safety-conscious drivers concerned about transporting their families on our dangerous highways. An extended cab makes more room for passengers or other cargo in the back seat of a pickup truck and is a popular option for families that use their pickup truck as their primary vehicle. Like SUV’s people choose pickup trucks for their assumed safety as they are larger and their occupants ride higher than in most passenger vehicles. Pickups are thought to be a safer option in the event of a frontal collision than a passenger vehicle and ideal for young families. That may have been true until just recently when the Ford Motor Company decided to replace the steel body structure of their popular 2015 F-Series of pickup trucks with lighter, less expensive aluminum, but then failed to add safety steel reinforcements to their extended cab models as they had done to other models.
Recent safety tests have found that pickup trucks with an extended cab may present a serious risk to the driver in a head-on collision as the driver’s survival space is significantly reduced. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety crash tested a Ford Motor Co.’s new aluminum-bodied F-150 pickup and the extended cab model incurred damage that would pose a risk of serious injury to the driver. Other Ford Pickup models like the SuperCrew F-150 are equipped with extra safety steel and passed the test with a low risk of injury to the driver.
The extended cab version does not include the steel safety reinforcement, and the company has done nothing to communicate this critical information to the public. It is implied that the extended cab model has the same safety structure as the safer, regular size cab model. David Zuby, the Insurance Institute’s chief research officer said in an interview with Car and Driver magazine, “That shortchanges buyers who might pick the extended cab thinking it offers the same protection in this type of crash as the crew cab … It doesn’t.”
As a result of the findings of these safety tests, the Ford Motor Company has said that it will add a measure of safety steel to the extended cab models of all F-150 trucks for the year 2016. This does nothing to help the thousands of families who have purchased the 2015 model of the truck thinking they were buying a safe family vehicle like the regular cab version.
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed as a result of an accident involving your 2015 aluminium body, Ford F150 extended cab pickup truck, or other motor vehicle accident, please call The Law Firm of Reyes, Browne & Reilley. Our expert Dallas product liability attorneys are knowledgeable and experienced in all aspects of motor vehicle accident and defective product litigation. We stand ready to assist you and will listen carefully to the facts surrounding your accident.