North Georgia Ford Compares 2012 Ford F-150 VS 2012 Chevrolet Avalanche Near Ellijay, GA

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2012 Ford F-150

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2012 Chevrolet Avalanche

Safety Comparison

The F-150’s blind spot mirrors use wide-angle convex mirrors mounted in the corner of each side view mirror to reveal objects that may be in the driver's blind spots. The Avalanche doesn’t offer a system to reveal objects in the driver's blind spots.

Both the F-150 and the Avalanche have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding and available four-wheel drive.

For its top level performance in frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and its standard AdvanceTrac™, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety rates the F-150 SuperCrew as a “Top Pick” for 2011, a rating only granted to 97 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Avalanche has not been tested, yet.

Warranty Comparison

The F-150’s corrosion warranty is unlimited miles longer than the Avalanche’s (unlimited vs. 100,000 miles).

Reliability Comparison

For smoother operation, better efficiency and fewer moving parts, the engines in the F-150 have an overhead cam design, rather than the old pushrod design of the engine in the Avalanche.

The F-150 has a standard “limp home system” to keep drivers from being stranded if most or all of the engine’s coolant is lost. The engine will run on only half of its cylinders at a time, reduce its power and light a warning lamp on the dashboard so the driver can get to a service station for repairs. The Avalanche doesn’t offer a lost coolant limp home mode, so a coolant leak could strand you or seriously damage the truck’s engine.

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without their vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports predicts that the Ford F-150 4x4 V8’s reliability will be 6% better than the Avalanche and the Ford F-150 2WD V8 will be 14% better than the Avalanche.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the F-150 first among large pickups in their 2011 Initial Quality Study. The Avalanche was rated third.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2011 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Ford vehicles are more reliable than Chevrolet vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Ford 12th in reliability, above the industry average. With 16 more problems per 100 vehicles, Chevrolet is ranked 16th.

Engine Comparison

The F-150’s optional 5.0 DOHC V8 produces 40 more horsepower (360 vs. 320) and 45 lbs.-ft. more torque (380 vs. 335) than the Avalanche’s 5.3 V8. The F-150’s optional 3.5 turbo V6 produces 45 more horsepower (365 vs. 320) and 85 lbs.-ft. more torque (420 vs. 335) than the Avalanche’s 5.3 V8. The F-150’s optional 6.2 SOHC V8 produces 91 more horsepower (411 vs. 320) and 99 lbs.-ft. more torque (434 vs. 335) than the Avalanche’s 5.3 V8.

As tested in Motor Trend the Ford F-150 is faster than the Chevrolet Avalanche:

F-150 V6

F-150 V8


Zero to 60 MPH

7.4 sec

6.9 sec

8.3 sec

Quarter Mile

15.7 sec

15.3 sec

16.2 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

89.4 MPH

93.3 MPH

86.9 MPH

As tested in Motor Trend the Ford F-150 6.2 is faster than the Chevrolet Avalanche (base engine):



Zero to 60 MPH

6.4 sec

8.3 sec

Quarter Mile

15 sec

16.2 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

94.6 MPH

86.9 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

On the EPA test cycle the F-150 RWD turbo V6 gets better fuel mileage than the Avalanche RWD (16 city/22 hwy vs. 15 city/21 hwy).

The F-150’s optional fuel tank has 4.5 gallons more fuel capacity than the Avalanche (36 vs. 31.5 gallons).

The F-150 has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Avalanche doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the F-150’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Avalanche:



Front Rotors

13.8 inches

13 inches

Rear Rotors

13.7 inches

13.5 inches

The F-150 stops much shorter than the Avalanche:



70 to 0 MPH

196 feet

204 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

117 feet

146 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

150 feet

176 feet

Consumer Reports

Suspension and Handling Comparison

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the F-150 5.5 ft. bed SuperCrew’s wheelbase is 14.5 inches longer than on the Avalanche (144.5 inches vs. 130 inches). The F-150 6.5 ft. bed SuperCrew’s wheelbase is 26.6 inches longer than on the Avalanche (156.6 inches vs. 130 inches).

The F-150 5.5 ft. bed Harley Davidson SuperCrew 4x4 handles at .77 G’s, while the Avalanche 4x4 pulls only .68 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

For better maneuverability, the F-150 6.5 ft. bed Regular Cab’s turning circle is 1.3 feet tighter than the Avalanche’s (41.7 feet vs. 43 feet).

For greater off-road capability the F-150 8 ft. bed SuperCab has a greater minimum ground clearance than the Avalanche (10 vs. 9.1 inches), allowing the F-150 to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis Comparison

The Ford F-150 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs up to about 1150 pounds less than the Chevrolet Avalanche.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The F-150 SuperCrew shortbed has a much larger cargo box than the Avalanche with its rear seat up (55.5 vs. 45.5 cubic feet).

The Ford F-150 has a standard tailgate assist feature, which prevents the heavy tailgate from falling with a crash and causing injury. It allows adults and children to easily open and close the tailgate with one hand to better facilitate loading and unloading. The Chevrolet Avalanche doesn’t offer a tailgate assist.

Ergonomics Comparison

The F-150’s front power windows open or close with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The Avalanche’s power windows’ switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully.

In case you lock your keys in your vehicle, or don’t have them with you, you can let yourself in using the available exterior keypad (not available on F-150 XL/STX). The Avalanche doesn’t offer an exterior keypad entry system, and its OnStar ® can’t unlock the doors if the vehicle doesn’t have cell phone reception or the driver can’t contact the service.

The F-150 Platinum’s standard wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically according to the amount of rainfall on the windshield. The Avalanche’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

Both the F-150 and the Avalanche offer available heated front seats. The F-150 Platinum also has standard heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the Avalanche.

Optional Sync AppLink for the F-150 allows the driver and passengers access to select programs on their smartphones, including reading text messages aloud, playing internet radio stations, searching the internet, following twitter accounts and other online activities without taking their eyes off the road or their hands from the wheel. The Avalanche doesn’t offer factory integrated smartphone program access.

The F-150 offers an optional 115-volt a/c outlet, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters, which can break or get misplaced. The Avalanche doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

Economic Advantages Comparison

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the F-150 is less expensive to operate than the Avalanche because it costs $350 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the F-150 than the Avalanche, including $157 less for a water pump, $457 less for an alternator, $57 less for front brake pads, $33 less for a starter, $76 less for fuel injection, $225 less for a fuel pump, $47 less for front struts and $91 less for a power steering pump.

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