This week I bring you a very special pickup, the all-new Ford Lightning, a completely electric truck, and the first time Ford has built an electric version of the best-selling vehicle in America.
Let’s talk about what powers it: two electric motors draw power from a battery pack that produces 580-horses and an incredible 775-pound feet of torque. It is important to note my review truck has the extended range battery, which is a $10,000 upgrade. The standard battery isn’t as powerful and does not have as much range as this one. The battery has a range of 300-miles, takes you from 0-to-60 in just 4.5 seconds, and it has a top speed of 110-miles per hour.
On the subject of range, this truck is supposed to have 300-miles, but fully charged, it shows closer to 315-miles. After a few days, checking the projected range, it appears it will get about 280-miles in range, which is closer than any other EV I’ve had and to be fair, it’s been hot in Texas and I’ve run the A/C really hard. I also did some fast starts when filming, so the range is likely achievable with normal driving.
I love that the Lightning looks just like all other F-150s, except for the grill, which is closed, but not obvious. Other than the unique 22” wheels and the Lightning emblems on the sides of this truck, it just looks like any other F-150 except for the massive LED light bars in front and back that I think is a cool touch and something everybody remarks about.
This is the top-of-the-line Platinum edition, and it is loaded and has a spectacular interior. White with black trimmed seats are extremely comfortable and the front seats are heated, cooled, and they will massage you. Both front seats will recline to fully flat for those quick naps you need. There is a 12” digital gauge display that is configurable and prominently displays your range, speed, and other pertinent information, including a menu. This is all controlled from the steering wheel.
The focal area of the interior is a massive 15-and-a-half-inch screen that is mounted vertically, much like a large iPad. From there you can enter the apps for drive modes, access, towing, smart hitch, onboard scales, lighting, the Pro Power system, parking assist, Intelligent backup power, seat settings, and you can put it in valet mode. There is a large, round volume knob at the bottom which to me looks a little strange, but it certainly is easy to operate.
The screen also runs the B&O sound system, navigation, BlueTooth, Apple CarPlay & Android Auto, a Wi-Fi hotspot, and an exceptional 360-degree review camera system.
The center console houses the gear shifter, has a wireless phone charger, USB and USC ports, a 12-volt and 110-power outlet just to the right, and a couple of cup holders. A push of a button will make the gear shifter fold down, then from the backside of the massive center console, you can flip it forward to make a really slick work station for a laptop or a nice picnic table to eat on.
The back seat is massive and has storage underneath it to hide valuables. It folds up to create a huge load floor, and it has air-conditioning vents, heated seats, more power ports, and a fold down armrest with cupholders. Back seat passengers will be very comfortable.
This Platinum Edition comes extremely loaded with a panoramic moonroof, power mirrors with side spotlights, power tilt wheel, power sliding rear window, adaptive cruise control, trailer towing package, keyless entry pad, forward sensing system, running boards, and active park assist.
The F-150 Lightning has some cool features I must point out. The first is the frunk, the front trunk. It opens with a button on the key fob or on the dash, and features a drainable ice chest and has 14 cubic-feet of cargo area. It is entirely waterproof.
The tailgate is power and you can raise or lower it from the key fob or also on the dash. Usually trucks just lower the tailgate, not raise them. The tailgate itself has a measuring tool and cutouts for putting drinks, your cell phone, etc, and it has the Ford slide out step to get into the bed.
Inside the bed and the frunk are power outlets to plug in tools or whatever else is needed. The bed outlets have a 240-volt plug-in that will allow you to run lights to your home in the event of a power outage. Ford says it will run an entire house for up to 3 days.
Another neat feature is the onboard scales. You can put 2000 pounds of cargo in the bed and from the main screen on the dash, it will show you exactly how much weight you have OR the tongue weight of your trailer to make sure you are not overloading your truck.
My review truck also has Blue Cruise, Ford’s self-driving technology. This feature allows you to operate your vehicle hands-free while you are monitored by a driver-facing camera to make sure you’re keeping your eyes on the road while driving on prequalified sections of divided highways called Hands-Free Blue Zones that make up over 130,000 miles of North American roads. If you are not on an approved road, the system will not engage.
Ride and Drive
Although electric, this is a very capable truck that will tow 10,000 pounds, although the effect on battery range is unknown to me, but I do address this below. I can tell you this, the acceleration of this truck is insane and it drives and rides like a dream, thanks primarily to a new independent rear suspension system on the Lightning.
One issue I usually notice with EVs is interior quietness, since there is no engine noise to drown out the exterior sounds, but this is not an issue with the Lightning, it is whisper quiet.
Charging time is pretty quick with a 150-kilowatt charger, which are available in many places or can be installed at home. Public charging is free for two years and you can get to an 80% charge in just 41 minutes.
What You'll Pay
MSRP on this loaded pickup is $94,304 before the $7500 federal tax credit and any state incentives that may apply. You can actually get a nicely equipped XLT Lightning for about $72,000 before incentives.
In summary, this truck won’t work for everyone, but it is impressive and has some amazing features like I’ve never seen before. Best of all, never visiting a gas station again is a strong motivator, especially with current gas prices.
- What I Liked Most: The power, the great ride and handling.
- What I would change: Like all EVs, more range is needed.
- MSRP: Base price $90,874, as equipped $94,304.
- Fuel Economy: Rated at 78 City MPGe/63 highway MPGe/70 Combined MPGe.
- Odometer reading when tested: 2,400 miles.
- Weight: Approximately 7,000 pounds.
- Spare tire: Full-sized.
- Length-Width-Height: 232.7” long/80” wide with mirrors folded in/78.3” high.
- Fuel Tank Capacity: N/A. Charging port on driver’s side front fender.
- Towing Capacity: 10,000 pounds.
- Official Color: Star White.
- 2022 F-150 Lightning in a few words: The future is here today, depending on how much driving you do.
- Warranty: 3-year/36,000 mile bumper-to-bumper, 5-year/60,000 mile powertrain warranty with roadside assistance, 8-year/100,000 miles on electric components.
- Final Assembly Location: Rogue Assembly Plant, Dearborn, MI.
- Manufacturer's website: Ford