‘F-150 is now electric’, ‘The lightning name is back’, ‘The F-Series charges up’, some of the many headlines on the internet for this highly anticipated pick-up truck. Not so surprising as the F-150 is America’s best-selling vehicle and every change it receives, no matter how small or big it is, be sure that it will be on every media publication’s articles. The switch to an electric platform doesn’t mean the petrol and diesel powered variants are completely written off, well at least for now. With the $20 billion investment for Ford electric vehicles, it is quite evident that the day of extinction for the fossil fuel motor is coming.
The F-150 Lightning is the latest legendary Ford model turned electric and it joins the Mustang Mach-E and Transit van in this transition. And staying true to the EV philosophy of being green, the Lightning will be built at Ford’s high-tech factory using sustainable manufacturing practices.
Launching the truck, Ford kept bragging about how quickly it launches off the line, how ironic. There are two electric motors, one on each axle available for all trim models namely the XLT, Lariat and the top spec Platinum model. The first two trims gain a power output of 426 hp (310 kW) and the latter has 563 hp (420 kW) and 1051 Nm of torque. It accelerates from 0-97 km/h in 4.5 seconds which makes it one of the quickest pick-up trucks on the market putting it on par with the RAM TRX, goes to show how beneficial the instant torque from the electric motors can do.
And the motors working overtime to provide the performance require a liquid cooling system to ease the temperature levels whenever they near the haywire point. The underbody panelling shields the batteries which can be located right under the rear passenger seating. The standard model has a range of 370 kilometres whilst the extended-range model has a range of 483 kilometres, both on a single charge.
The maximum payload is rated at 907 kilograms which is just a shy of 210 kilograms less than the normal F-150. However, it still can tow as much as what you would except from an F-Series Truck, about 4 500 kilograms of towing capacity. And it also dawns an independent rear suspension which is a first for the F-150. The design aspect is visually the same but it has an LED strip light on the front grille without any opening for cooling because there’s no engine, meaning the engine compartment has been turned into a storing compartment. Well, call it a frunk with a load capacity of 181 kilograms and a space of 400 litres.
The interior sports a digital instrument cluster, a 15.5-inch touchscreen with SYNC4A infotainment system that has a smartphone-like interface showing recently used apps at the bottom of the screen. It comes with in-car WiFi and over-the-air updates to quickly solve any bugs that might lag the screen. The Pro Power Onboard system debuts on the Ford Lightning and it has a maximum power output of 9.6 kW which is enough to power a whole house. The power can be accessed through the 240V and four 120V outlets in the truck’s bed.
Orders are already available and it expected to be on sale in spring 2022.
Source: Ford F-150 Lightning Press Release