By Natalie Mojica
With a base price of $41,669, the Lightning F-150, Ford’s new electric version of the much-loved pickup truck, has excited many with its affordability. So much so, that company has had to stop taking reservations as 200,000 orders have been placed ahead of its release.
To keep up with the demand, Ford is nearly doubling its production. The automaker will manufacture 150,000 F-150 Lightning cars annually instead 80,000.
While the appearance of the new F-150 Lightning remains the same as the 2022 F-150, it boasts a “zero to sixty mph time in the mid-four-second range,” making it the fastest version of the F-150 ever released.
The truck also has two different options for battery life. The standard range battery will run for 98 kWh, while the extended range will run at 131 kWh with a higher price point. With the extended range battery and optional “Max Trailer Tow” package, the F-150 has a carrying capacity of 10,000 pounds.
Ford’s F-150 has been a bestselling vehicle line for more than 40 years. The famous car company makes about $40 billion in revenue from the F-series alone, making it a staple in its lineup and American culture. The company is determined to evolve the F-150 to keep up with the increasingly popular electric vehicle market.
While Ford has yet to develop official charging stations like Tesla, F-150 Lightning drivers will be able to charge their cars at any of the 19,500 stations powered by Electrify America and ChargePoint.
Many fans of electric vehicles cite the increasing gas price as their primary reason for converting to electric cars. Automotive journalist John Voeckler estimated that home charging only costs the average U.S. household $0.12 per kWh. The energy cost of an electric vehicle that runs 1,000 miles a month ranges from $25 to $33 a month, while a gas car at even 30 miles per gallon would cost about $100 a month.
Consumers are also considering the ecological impact of transportation, choosing electric cars as a way to be environmentally friendly. But battery scientists like Rahul Malik warn that, “Even an E.V. plugged into a highly renewable grid must be driven for more than twenty-five thousand miles before it has lower “life cycle” emissions (which include the energy used in mining and manufacturing) than a combustion vehicle.”
Still, as journalist John Seabrook noted in his analysis of the new F-150 Lightning, “The future of the planet, and of human life on it, may depend on how rapidly the auto industry can reduce tailpipe emissions.”
Of course, Ford is not the only company looking to revamp the classic American pick-up truck as an electric vehicle. Competition for the F-150 includes Rivian’s R1T and the upcoming Chevrolet Silverado EV.