Known as the Ford L-Line trucks, they were a popular series of heavy-duty vehicles manufactured by Ford Motor Company between 1970 and 1998. It was distinguished by a large hexagonal grille when it was first introduced. It was constructed at a new facility known as the Kentucky Truck Plant. Still, because of its proximity to Louisville, Kentucky, it became known as the Ford Louisville line of trucks and the “Louisville Plant,” respectively. This article focuses on the 1998 Ford L-Series

Those heavy-duty Ford vehicles, the heavy-duty F-Series trucks, and similar tandem-axle T-Series trucks replaced the short conventional N-Series trucks. The Louisville Line consisted of various vehicles designed to serve the medium-, heavy-, and extra-heavy-duty trucks, among others. The 1998 Ford L-Series would become one of the most popular truck series the company had ever created.


The 1998 L-Series comes in 7 trim levels:

  • LT: tandem axle
  • LN: short nose
  • LNT: short nose tandem axle
  • LS: set back front axle
  • LTS: setback front axle
  • LTL: tractor-trailer
  • Aeromax: aerodynamic version

Performance and Fuel Economy of the 1998 Ford L-Series

Almost all models came with at least one engine choice, and the 9000 series came with a number of them. The Ford 361 V8 engine was standard in the 600–800 series, while the Ford 475 V8 engine was available in the 700–900 series. The 900 series came equipped with a 401 V8 engine. The 361 V8 was replaced by a 370 in 1977, and the 401 V8 was replaced by a 429 in 1978; the 475 V8 remained an available option. Caterpillar V175 engines were standard on the 7000 and 8000 series, while the V200 and V225 engines were optional on the 7000 and 8000 series. NH230 engines were standard, with Cummins N series engines up to 350 hp (260 kW) and Caterpillar 3406 engines up to 375 hp (280 kW) available as options on the 9000 series.

The Ford L9000 is powered by a Caterpillar engine with the model number 3306DSL. This diesel engine can generate a maximum output power of 300 horsepower. The Ford L9000 is equipped with a Fuller brand transmission, model 8LL, and a manual gearbox. The L9000 is a tri-axle vehicle having a coil-spring suspension system in the rear. The Ford L9000 has a gross vehicle weight rating of 68,000 pounds, making it a large vehicle. Approximately 16,000 pounds can be supported by the front axle, whereas the rear axle can support 40,000 pounds.


The style of the Ford L-Series pickup truck would be carried over to subsequent Ford vehicles. The Ford Torino and Ranchero were revised in 1972, and the hexagonal grille that resembled the L-Series was introduced. The W-Series Cab-Over-Engine trucks would get chrome grilles from the L-Series trucks in 1974. The hexagonal grille of the 1978 Ford F-100 pickup truck would be another first for the company. The Louisville Line was rebuilt in 1996, and the hexagonal front profile was replaced with a slanted windscreen and rounder front outlines, resulting in a more modern appearance. After 1996, there will be no more versions with set-back axles available. However, once the heavy-duty truck business was sold to Freightliner and the trucks were rebadged as Sterling Trucks, the manufacture of models with set-back axles.


It wasn’t until 1976 that Ford introduced the LTL-9000, a vehicle aimed at long-distance truck drivers. The LTL-9000 would debut with a distinctive grille and headlamp configuration two years later. The CLT-Cabovers, which featured grilles similar to the LTL-9000, debuted the same year as the LTL-9000.


The AeroMax was created in 1988 as a repackaged version of the basic L-Series truck design. This truck represented a significant step forward in class-8 aerodynamics. The ability to have swept-back front fenders and a better form-fitting front bumper were made feasible by the setback front axle. Along with it, it included wraparound headlamps, tank skirts, and an optional “Aero Bullet” sleeping compartment. The Aeromax 120 was the first of these models introduced in 1996, followed by the Aeromax 9500 the following year. On the other hand, these newer versions would only be around for a few years. In the late 1990s, Ford sold its heavy-duty truck operation to Freightliner Trucks, which became known as Freightliner Trucks. Sterling, a former branch of White Motor Company, rebadged the vehicles and sold them to the public.


Engine type: Diesel

1998 Ford L-Series

1998 FORD L-SERIES Service Manual

These manuals go through every aspect of how the car operates. The vehicle’s purchase price does not include the service manual aka repair manual for your 1998 FORD L-SERIES manual.

  • Introduction
  • Safety Restraints
  • Instrumentation
  • Before Driving
  • Starting and Operating
  • Vehicle Maintenance
  • Specifications
  • Capacities
  • Servicing
  • Customer Assistance

The Ford repair manuals for the 1998 FORD L-SERIES are vast and cover every aspect of the vehicle’s service and maintenance

1998 Ford L-Series Frequently Asked Questions

What does the “L” stand for?

The L-Series stands for Ford Louisville and is a range of heavy-duty trucks made by Ford from 1970-1998

How many gears does the L9000 have?

Answer: 4 gears, 2 ranges

Why did Ford stop making heavy-duty trucks?

Answer: They were not making money, so Ford moved its focus to family cars and pickups