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Ford CEO told Biden to 'step on the throttle' when the president test drove the new all-electric F-150

·Anchor, Editor-at-Large
·2 min read
In this article:
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President Joe Biden, an all-around car guy, listened to another long-time car guy when he visited Ford's EV manufacturing plant in Detroit this week. Biden, off the cuff, asked Ford CEO Jim Farley to test drive the then unreleased new all-electric F-150. 

Secret Service wasn't keen on the idea, Farley told Yahoo Finance Live, but it's very hard to tell the leader of the free world no. So Farley didn't. 

"That was totally unexpected and Secret Service really didn't want him to get in the truck," said Farley, referring to Biden.

"Secret Service tapped me on the shoulder and said 'Jim, we need to get to the track' and then in the motorcade he jumped in the truck," added Farley. "He looked at me. The Secret Service people said no. And then the president said 'what should I do, Jim?' I said 'just step on the throttle.' He had a big smile on his face. It looked like Top Gun, [with] the Ray Bans on. He was loving that moment."

U.S. President Joe Biden tests the new Ford F-150 lightning truck as he visits VDAB at Ford Dearborn Development Center in Dearborn, Michigan, U.S., May 18, 2021.  REUTERS/Leah Millis     TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
U.S. President Joe Biden tests the new Ford F-150 lightning truck as he visits VDAB at Ford Dearborn Development Center in Dearborn, Michigan, U.S., May 18, 2021. REUTERS/Leah Millis TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

To be sure, Ford is loving the limelight right now hours after a successful debut of the hotly anticipated F-150 Lightning to mere mortals that don't have a Secret Service detail. 

The extended range, battery powered Lightning promises 10,000 pounds of towing capacity, over the air software updates and the ability to power your home via a backup power capability. This version — which starts at $50,000 or so — boasts a 300-mile range on a charge, 563 horsepower and travels 0 mph to 60 mph in about 4.4 seconds. 

Farley told Yahoo Finance Live Ford has already amassed 20,000 pre-orders for the truck in about 12 hours. The F-150 Lightning is set to begin production in mid-2022. 

Ford shares rose 3% on Thursday amid the electric truck reveal. The stock is up roughly 86% since Farley —who joined Ford in 2007 — took over as CEO in October 2020. 

Brian Sozzi is an editor-at-large and anchor at Yahoo Finance. Follow Sozzi on Twitter @BrianSozzi and on LinkedIn.

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