Ford is giving its legendary F-Series pickup truck an all-electric engine update. The blue oval will be calling this model “Lightning”, and this name should sound pretty familiar to Ford lovers who were around in the 90s. So what do we know about the New Ford F-150 Lightning, and what does it promise us?
The Ford F series is the world's best-selling truck and sold more than 35 million units to date. Also, it has been the number 1 selling vehicle in the USA for over 40 years, since the pickup truck started production in 1948. The best-selling model of the F series is always easy to guess, the F-150. As you can tell, these trucks have a massive reputation, so Ford had to build something extraordinary when they decided to go with the EV direction on the F series.
Entering the electric pick-up segment in the USA nowadays is not easy for any company because the industry includes many ambitious competitors such as Rivian R1T, Tesla Cybertruck, and GMC Hummer EV. The F-150 Lightning can not even be the first electric pick-up to be released. Because among all the models, the Rivian R1T has been on the market since September 2021, and it became the world's first mass-produced electric pick-up truck.
The Power and Acceleration
Ford F-150 Lightning comes with a dual electric motor arrangement, one on each axle. Because of that, all versions comes standard with a four-wheel-drive system. Ford Motor Company states that the entry version of the F-150 Lightning will have 426 hp, and the longer-range version with a larger battery will have 563 hp. In addition, an excellent torque value of 1,050 Nm is announced on both battery packs.
While the standard-range version’s 0 to 60 mph time is not mentioned anywhere (estimates are around 5.5 seconds), the long-range version’s info was shared by the POTUS himself. President Joe Biden test drove the F-150 Lightning before anyone else could and tried the truck’s 0 to 60 mph. As a result, a time of 4.4 seconds was obtained by him, and now that’s the official number.
If we need to compare the Lightning to its gas-powered sibling, the F-150 EcoBoost with a 3.5-liter V6 engine’s 0 to 60 mph time is 5.5 seconds. That vehicle has a turbo gasoline engine that produces 400 horsepower and 680 Nm of torque.
F-150 Lightning offers independent rear suspension in Ford's F Series pick-ups for the first time. In addition, it comes with four driving modes: Normal, Sport, Off-Road, and Tow/Haul.
The F-150 Lightning will come with two different battery options, standard and long-range. Ford states that the standard version offers a range of 230 miles, while the long-range version will offer a range of 300 miles. In addition, the vehicle has an adjustable regenerative braking system. Ford has also included sensors in the electric F-150 that have the ability to recalculate the range after loading.
The standard-range version of the F-150 Lightning has an onboard 11.3 kW charger, while the long-range version has a 19.2 kW unit. In addition, the truck will offer fast charging support up to 150 kW. It is also stated that the vehicle's battery will reach from 15% to 80% charge in around 40 minutes with DC fast charging.
With a 32-amp standard AC charging unit, the battery can be fully charged in approximately 14 hours, and a higher 48-amp charging unit should do the job in around 10 hours.
The F-150 Lightning also includes the "Ford Intelligent Backup Power” feature. It means that this truck can power up your house in case of a power cut. In order to use this feature, one must purchase a Ford Charge Station Pro charging unit, but Ford claims that a long-range version of the F-150 Lightning can power a house for three days straight.
The F-150 Lightning's frunk (front trunk) offers 14.1 cubic feet of storage space and 400 lbs loading capacity, and this is one of the most impressive frunks in the electric vehicle market. There are USB ports and 2.4 kW charging ports in the waterproof frunk. There is also a 7.2 kW charging port in the bed so that this vehicle can charge many electric tools at once.
The top model comes with Ford’s sizeable 15.5-inch touchscreen infotainment system called Sync 4A. The system has all the bells and whistles, including voice command, cloud-based navigation, integrated Amazon Alexa, wireless Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto connections. However, instead of a vertical 15.5-inch screen and Sync 4A combination, there is a 12.0-inch horizontal screen and Sync 4 system in the base version.
The interior of the new F-150 Lightning is pretty similar to the gasoline version. It is comfortable and sturdy, even on the base model. You can even get the Ford’s Nirvana leather trim on higher-up levels. However, leather seats and trims get damaged easily in an off-road work environment. So we strongly suggest you think about getting covers for your seat and dashboard. Coverking has an extensive catalog of 30962 different combinations of custom seat covers. and 2052 different versions of custom dashboard covers.
The F-150 Lightning also comes with an advanced driver assistance system called Blue Cruise by Ford. In addition to the automatic parking feature, this system also offers autonomous driving on highways. In addition, a system called "Pro Trailer Hitch Assist" is included to assist the driver with the steering wheel and pedals while towing a trailer.
Production Date and Pricing
Ford will start producing the F-150 Lightning in the early spring of 2022. It is stated that the US starting price of the truck will be around $40,000. In comparison, the starting price of the F-150 with a standard V6 engine is approximately $30,000. It is also stated that the cost of the top-end version of the F-150 Lightning will reach up to $90,000. Ford began taking orders right after the introduction of the model.
There is a considerable demand for this vehicle, as we can all guess. Ford's CEO, Jim Farley, told the press that the orders for the F-150 Lightning reached 44,00 units in just 48 hours after it was announced, and Ford had to stop taking new orders when the orders got closer to the 200,000 mark. There is good news, however. The Ford Motor Company is planning to build 150,000 trucks by the end of the year 2022, and they are aiming to increase the production capacity to 600,000 by the end of 2023.
What’s in the Future of Ford F-150?
Climate change is of the utmost importance for the future of humankind. For this reason, most manufacturers nowadays are lowering the production of gasoline and diesel-powered vehicles to make more space for EVs and PHEVs.
At the beginning 2020s, our lives were changed drastically by the Covid-19 pandemic. But, unfortunately, it also affected the auto industry, as we all can tell. The semiconductor chip shortage alone caused Ford to drop the production of F-150 by fifty percent.
However, Ford Motor Company built and sold almost a million units of F-150s in 2019 alone. So, we can safely say that they are not going to drop the production of internal combusted versions of their best-selling trucks anytime soon. They are also investing huge amounts of money into researching and developing their electric vehicles and building their famous models’ EV versions like the F-150 and Mustang. So, whether they like it or not, they know electricity will power the future.
This ad on Ford’s YouTube channel will give you an idea about how Ford is looking towards the future:
Tankut Basar is an ARA (American Rally Assoc.) Racing Driver and an FIA Bronze Category License Holder. His passion for driving began with karting like most racers. He started racing internationally at the age of 22. Tankut loves everything car-related and will keep enjoying the drive until the end.