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The all-new 2021 Ranger Tremor off-road package enhances the look and feel of the midsize pickup as Ford steps up its fight against the Toyota Tacoma.

Wochit

Despite a pandemic and economic uncertainty, the latest U.S. sales numbers released Friday show pickup truck buyers remain loyal to the Ford F-Series and the company is catering to an ongoing public demand for bigger vehicles overall.

Third quarter sales this year of America’s bestselling pickups exceeded the same period in 2019, which was viewed as a strong year for an industry not yet affected by the coronavirus. Ford continues to remain the dominant player in the truck wars, which drives huge revenues for the Detroit Three and primarily Ford.

“We feel very fortunate and cautiously optimistic,” Mark LaNeve, vice president, U.S. marketing, sales and service, told the Free Press.

Ford will probably go all-out to ensure the replacement for this 2020 F-150 goes into production on schedule. (Photo: Ford Motor Company)

Law enforcement is ordering more Police Interceptor SUVs, a version of the Ford Explorer, which saw a 200% surge in sales over third-quarter 2019, he said. Vehicles used for business, such as delivery vans and F-Series trucks used in construction, are in demand, LaNeve said.

Ford sold 59,060 Explorers, including the Police Interceptor, leading to an overall 73.9% gain from the same period one year ago. While law enforcement accounted for a significant portion of sales, individual retail sales from dealer lots grew 56%.

The latest sales numbers reflect recent statements by Ford CEO Jim Farley that commercial sales continue to be an area of potential growth for Ford.

Not only did Ford announce a rise in F-Series sales year over year in the third quarter, but the F-Series continued to buffer the company and led to a smaller drop