I had a 1995 Lightning that I tipped the scales at 4300 pounds. The Gen 2 Lightning was around 4650 and according to this Link the 2010 weighs 4700 without the supercharger and goodies of the 1999 Lightning.
Obviously comparing regular cab short wheel base keeps the comparison consistent but it might also reduce the 700 pound claim considering it is harder to make a bed lighter compared to a Supercrew. Considering the all aluminum 5.0 is already available, I doubt that will be included in the claimed reduction.
If anyone has real world results for what a current generation regular cab SWB weighs, please post it because a 700 pound reduction would make the truck possibly lighter than a Dodge Challenger SRT8.
One of the big problems is what people have come to accept in a 1/2 ton truck. A set-up 1/2 is just as capable as my old school 3/4 ton with the HD suspension package. My guess is a lot of it came from safety to the structure then they found it was stiffer, and that snow balled a bit into stronger 1/2 tons. Then marketing with the most capable 1/2 which is the largest segment of buyers.
Lets say a F150 rcsb gets 23mpg hwy with the 3.7 base V6 with all its weight, and larger overall size. Which is a impressive vehicle by any standard, but what could it get if they actually built it to true 1/2 ton standards. Get the weight down to 3800 pounds, have a 1000 pay load, and 5000 pound towing limit. It would be capable of just under 30 mpg if they also brought down the frontal area a bit too.
Then who would buy the truck because it is not capable anymore because to many of the people want the biggest thing they can barely afford. The reality is there has to be an industry wide standard of what a 1/2, 3/4 and 1 tons are. Then SAE for instance body verify the finished vehicle for its rating.
If I could run one of these new 3.7 V6's in my project F100 I would be really tempted, and with my trucks light weight by comparison. I will have the best of both worlds.
My '04 Expedition which only came in standard length then weighs in at approx. 5000 lbs. I'd imagine the overall length of the Expy to be compatible with the RCSB F-150. The truck has an aluminum hood and rear gate, no step bumper and has this plastic cladding up both sides.
I don't see the F-150 getting much lighter than this.
A lot of the weight is thanks to all of the safety features, as well. All those airbags, seatbelts, crash beams, etc. add up.
Even the new Explorer Sport comes curbs at 4900lbs.
To get the weight down substantially, there would need to be a big change in the materials being used. I'm not talking about aluminum and plastic - think titanium rather than steel, carbon fiber, etc. Unfortunately, the availability of and cost to work with those materials simply aren't sustainable at the price point of a mass-manufactured vehicle.
They are saying that the aluminum body isn't the only reason for the weight loss. Guess the frame/chassis is lighter as well:
The 40th-anniversary F-150 will be up to 700 pounds lighter than the current truck. About 70 pounds of weight savings are the result of a new, high-strength steel chassis; the rest come from an all-aluminum body and bed. In the trucks currently on dealer lots, the hood is the only body component made of aluminum.
*Frame weight loss
*Aluminum body weight loss
*Attaching method for aluminum body weight loss. There are no tack welds. It is all industrial adhesives. I think I read that there are 7000 tack welds on the current body/bed. I would think the lack of those will save as much weight as the change to aluminum does.