The Ford F-150 Lightning once the fastest gas guzzling truck available from the Blue Oval goes forward as a zero-emissions centerpiece of the company’s $22 billion investment to electricify its global model lineup.
Still the fastest F-150 that will be available with a 0-60 time in the mid 4-second range, the new Lighting arrives as a range of trucks with four different trim grades from a commercial grade work truck to a top-end Platinum luxury liner.
The Lighting gets its own sheet-metal front and rear with unique fenders, hood, facial elements, headlamps and bumpers. You’ll see it coming and going with available signature LED lighting across the front and rear. A unique bed and tailgate design seal the deal.
As such, the new front and rear sheet-metal wrapper makes F-150 Lightning is the most aerodynamic F-150 ever. Fear not though, it inherits the same crew-cab and inside cargo box dimensions as the gas versions, so most existing accessories like utility racks and bed toppers will fit just the same.
Like the exterior, the cabin gets a unique dash and door-panel package. Center stage is a 15.5-inch vertical SYNC4 touch-screen command center similar to that found in the Mustang Mach-E. It replaces the majority of hard controls found in the gasoline F-150 for things like HVAC and accessories. Also unique is a 12-inch digital instrument cluster.
A nice surprise when it comes to versatility, because there isn’t a large radiator and engine package, the hood opens to expose a large lockable “frunk” that offers 43 cubic-feet of water-tight storage. Inside the drainable storage area are four electrical outlets, two USB chargers.
That leads us to what’s underneath it. The F-150 Lightning is based on an all-new electric platform that utilizes a new frame with a fully independent suspension front and rear. Featuring standard four-wheel drive, it has an electric power unit at both axles with the large lithium-ion batteries located in the center.
As such, Ford says the F-150 Lightning will have up to 563 horsepower and an astounding 775 pound-feet of torque. With four selectable drive modes of Normal, Sport, Off Road and Tow/Haul it promises up to 300 miles of range with the extended-range battery, 230 miles of range with the standard one.
Payload capacity proves an all-electric pickup isn’t a compromise with up to 2,000 pounds of payload and a maximum 10,000 pounds of available towing capacity. Handling and stability is improved due to its fully independent suspension and low center of gravity by way of the battery pack location.
Centered between the frame rails in a waterproof casing and well protected with skid plates. The battery, electric motors and power control units are all liquid cooled to be kept under grueling loads and duty expected of a full-size pickup.
Put through the same rigorous testing and proving out that all Ford pickups go through, the F-150 Lighting promises to be every bit as tough as a standard gas powered model if not more so.
With a standard 80-amp charge station and a dual onboard charging system you can charge at the rate of adding 30 miles per hour which means up to a 100% percent charge in eight hours. Even better, with a DC fast charger, the extended-range F-150 Lightning can add 54 miles of range in as little as 10 minutes charge up to 80% percent in around 40 minutes.
All of this battery power can be put to work too. The F-150 Lighting can be used as a camping or job-site power source able to spin off up to 9.6 kilowatts of power. An available Intelligent Backup Power system can serve as backup power for outages at home too.
I think the best part of the news here is the pricing structure. Ford set out to make this a mainstream electric pickup truck with a starting price of at $39,974 for the base model work-truck and $52,974 for a mid-level XLT. According to the Ford website, pricing for the top-end model comes in around $90,000.
Keep in mind, this is before subtracting the available $7,500 tax credit if you qualify. This makes overall pricing not that far off from the standard-range of gasoline and diesel powered versions of the F-150, and almost on-par with the hybrid Power-Boost model.
The 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning arrives in spring of 2022 and will be build at the historic River Rouge plant in Dearborn, Michigan. You can get in line for yours now with a $100 reservation on the Ford website with follow up ordering in the fall of 2021 to seal the deal.