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Ford Motor Co. has just released its sales figures for the 1st half of 2018, most of it carried by the F-series line of pickup trucks.

From January to June, Ford managed to sell 450,000 F-series trucks, or an impressive 1 truck every 35 seconds. The blistering pace is set to smash the automaker’s sales record, when it sold 939,511 trucks back in 2004, during the height of the economic boom.

The 2018 Ford F-150 in Lariat Supercrew trim. All images from Ford Motor Co.

The odds are good that Ford will break the 14-year old record, since sales typically accelerate in the second half of the year when new models are released, and dealers mark down old inventory for faster disposal.

The exceptional sales performance for 2018 seems to validate Ford’s decision to switch from traditional steel to aluminum bodies. At the time, the move sparked a lot of controversy, with rival GM even questioning the durability of aluminum-bodied trucks in a series of attack ads. Today it looks like truck owners have embraced the switch, vindicating Ford while both GM and Fiat Chrysler stuck to steel.

The first-half performance also benefited from Ford’s wider range of choices. In addition to the aluminum switch, the F-series boasts several engine options, ranging from the traditional V8 to turbocharged 4-cylinder mills. The busy automaker will also introduce a diesel option later this year, and there are even plans for a hybrid F-150 by 2020.

The F-series has long been a golden goose for the Blue Oval. It accounts for a considerable majority of Ford’s global sales, and makes enough profit to be on the Fortune 100 list by itself.

Not bad for what was once considered a work truck.

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