Just one year after Ford debuted its first hybrid F-150, the company is ready to show off an all-electric version of its iconic truck. The F-150 Lightning lives up to its "truck of the future" billing, as it prepares to lead a string of electric pickups and SUVs that are about to hit the streets, including Tesla's Cybertruck, the Hummer EV and others.
This dual-motor equipped truck is capable of delivering up to 563 horsepower and 775 lb.-ft. of torque, the most of any F-150 ever. It's unclear who will win a tug of war, but if anyone challenges you to a drag race, then Ford says it can manage 0 - 60 MPH in the mid four seconds range.
It's always in 4x4 mode, and while it doesn't have any crab walking capabilities, there are four drive modes available, with rated payload and towing limits of 1,800 pounds and 10,000 pounds on the extended range version. Oh, and since there's no motor up front, it has a 400-liter frunk to provide dry, lockable storage that you can open with just a keypad code. It's also uniquely equipped with an independent rear suspension, however for more information on how it will ride you should check out Autoblog.
Like the Mustang Mach-E, the electric F-150 is packed with smart features, including BlueCruise assist for hands-free driving on the highway and the latest Sync 4A infotainment system that enables Amazon Alexa as well as wireless CarPlay / Android Auto on a 15.5-inch touch screen. It is ready for OTA updates that can install in under two minutes, and it's the first F-Series to support using your smartphone as a key to lock, unlock and start the vehicle.
But the big draw here is its electrified powertrain. While all of the trucks have a dual-motor setup, buyers can choose between two versions of the battery pack, and while it didn't specify the capacity onboard, it said the standard version includes an onboard charger that can input 11.3kW, while the extended range model inputs 19.2kW. Ford is targeting an EPA estimated 230 miles of range for the standard version, and 300 miles on the extended. The battery is liquid cooled, sealed inside a waterproof casing with metal skid plates and a ruggedized under body to protect the cells and the motors. It's undergone offroad testing as well as weather testing at 40 degrees below Fahrenheit.
When it comes to charging the truck up — vital for commercial customers who can't afford down time and day to day drivers who just need to get around, Ford has several options. It has access to 63,000 charging plugs via FordPass, and if you can find a 150-kilowatt DC fast charger, the extended range model uses dual onboard chargers to get up to 54 miles of range in 10 minutes, and charge for 15 to 80 percent in 41 minutes.
At home, things will be a bit slower, although there are multiple ways to top off your battery cells for the night. Connected to a 240v outlet, the mobile charger can add 21 miles per charging hour (and just three on a standard 120v plug). That means the 240v plug will take 14 hours to charge from 15 percent to 100 percent on a standard range-equipped truck, and 19 hours for the extended. If you set up Ford's 48amp Connected Charge Station things get faster, at 10 hours and 13 hours, while the 80amp Ford Charge Station Pro cuts the time for a 15 to 100 percent charge down to just 8 hours, if you have a dual charger-equipped extended range model.
That power can flow the other way too, including at home if you have the Charge Station Pro, where Ford says that its extended range truck can keep your home going during an outage for up to three days. It can take over powering the house automatically, and switch back to charging the vehicle automatically when the electricity comes back on. Ford exec Ryan Gorman said "“F-150 Lightning is built for seamless transitions between charging your vehicle and powering your house when needed – and Ford is the first in the U.S. to offer this capability on an electric truck." Eventually, the company plans to offer Intelligent Power, a feature that lets owners rely on their truck's battery during high cost peak-energy hours.
If you're away from home at a job or camp site (and definitely not goofing around playing Mario Kart) its Pro Power capabilities outpace even the hybrid model. Base models can pump out 2.4Kw of power, while higher end models can deliver 9.6Kw of power, divided between 2.4 up front and 7.2 through the cab/bed outlets. That's more than even the hybrid version, and since there's no gas motor to rely on once the battery is drained, the truck can send its owner a notification when battery power drops to less than a third of its range. You can also set it up to automatically cut off power output if it gets close to the level you'll need to reach the nearest charging station.
That's the kind of thing Ford has built-in to address range anxiety fears, with intelligent range calculation that includes a scale to take into account payload, towing, weather and traffic. The Power My Trip route planner can figure out navigation based on available charging stations, with future updates planned that will include calculations for more weather conditions and elevation changes.
Unlike the Hummer EV supertruck, which will initially be available as a $100,000 model, Ford's electric truck will debut next spring is going for wider appeal. A stripped-down commercial model will be available for less than $40,000 — just like Tesla's Cybertruck — while the mid-level XLT costs $52,974 with more features. If you've heard enough, then you can put in a reservation with $100 down on Ford's website right now before they start shipping in spring of 2022. Otherwise, check out the live unveiling below for a better look at one of the first electric trucks you can actually buy.