With electric vehicles, there’s much talk of a ‘tipping point,’ the moment they become so ordinary and accessible that they’re the norm. America’s best-selling truck turning EV feels like as good a moment as any to trot out the cliché again. If the Ford F-150 can go electric, anything can.
This is the F-150 Lightning, borrowing its name from a late ’90s V8 special, but its thinking from two-and-a-bit decades later. Its dual motors are hooked up to four-wheel drive proffering peaks of 563hp and 1,050Nm. That makes this the torquiest F-150 yet and leads to a pickup that’s “wickedly quick off the mark,” according to Ford.
In mildly more mathematical terms, that’s 0-60mph (97kph) in the mid-fours. Perhaps more pertinent stats, though, are its maximum range (370km to around 480km, depending on spec), payload (900kg) and towing capacity (4.5 tons). And EV life brings something new to the F-150—yet more storage up front (400 liters of volume, 400kg in payload) in its fairly massive powered frunk.
‘Powered’ because not only can the Lightning’s battery power be used to, you know, travel places, it’ll also feed electricity to your work tools via four sockets. You can even plug the Lightning into your home as a power source should a storm strike and grid power be struck down.
Rest assured this F-150’s chock-full of regular truck-relevant tech, too. There’s Co-Pilot 360, which allows hands-free autonomy on approved roads. On-board scales let you know how close to that max payload you’re getting. And a hitch assist system helps you reverse and steer you toward your trailer. That’s not to mention a wealth of off-road modes to squeeze the best from its 4x4 drivetrain.
“For both Ford and the American auto industry, F-150 Lightning represents a defining moment as we progress toward a zero-emissions, digitally connected future,” says Bill Ford. “F-Series is America’s best-selling truck for 44 years, the backbone of work across the country, and a trusted icon for generations of customers. Now, we are revolutionizing it for a new generation.”
The fact that Ford has made mainstream EVs out of the Mustang, Transit, and F-150 badges before anything else is no accident. “Ford is starting with zero-emissions versions of its most popular and best-loved franchises,” we’re told, “with much more to come in the years ahead.”
Production will start in 2022 from a new Detroit factory using ‘sustainable practices.’ Ford has priced it already, though, the F-150 Lightning kicking off at $39,974 (P1.92 million) and reservable online with a hundred-dollar deposit. Like it?
NOTE: This article first appeared on TopGear.com. Minor edits have been made.