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Ford Finally Adds Basic Truck Conveniences Chevy’s Had For Years

Accessing a pickup’s bed never used to be an issue. In decades past, trucks were lower to the ground and their bedsides weren’t as tall. Then, in the late 1990s, trucks started getting physically larger and sitting higher off the ground. Their beds were made much deeper. What once was an easy reach into the box was now more of a chore. To aid owners in this new chore, manufacturers needed to come up with new and creative ways to help customers easily access their cargo. Enter the next step, literally, beyond ye olde stepside bed.

The bumper steps were first to arrive, the first iteration of which was offered by Chevrolet on the 2002-2006 Avalanche. A larger, second-generation, bumper step was added to all of GM’s pickup offerings beginning in 2014. Ford chose a different route, and in 2009 introduced the tailgate step on the refreshed F-150. The fold-out step was revolutionary, nesting inside the tailgate when not in use. And then there is the MultiPro tailgate that GMC introduced in 2019, which flips and folds to become, among other things, an easy pathway into the pickup’s bed. Then, in 2020 Chevy introduced an all-new Silverado HD, which now included not only larger bumper steps but also bedside steps located forward of the rear wheel opening.

This evolution of bed access now continues with the 2023 Ford F-Series Super Duty, which adds a series of steps carved out of its bedsides and rear bumper. Though the Super Duty was announced late last year, we’ve now gotten our best look yet at the Blue Oval’s implementation of not only rear bumper corner steps, but also those novel bedside steps, as well. These new steps are standard equipment across the full 2023 Super Duty lineup, from XL To Limited, F-250 to F-450, and all bed lengths (even single and dual-rear-wheel setups have ’em).

Ford’s now ubiquitous tailgate step also is standard on Platinum, King Ranch, and Limited trims and a $396 option for XL, XLT, and Lariat. Much like GM’s implementation, the beside steps are scalloped out of surrounding material, be it the corners of the rear bumper or, in the case of the bedside steps, the pickup box itself. The steps included on both the driver and passenger sides of the pickup box even appear large enough to easily accept a steel-toe work boot with plenty of plastic surrounding the pocket to protect the paint from accidental scuffs.

The Super Duty’s new steps are very similar to those offered on Chevrolet’s Silverado HD (which has had the bedside steps since 2020). And though GM hasn’t yet stated what the company thinks about Ford’s newest additions, as they say, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

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