Ford Increases F-150 Lightning Production
Good news for all-electric pickup truck fans. Ford Motor Company recently revealed that it will double the production numbers of its awesome new F-150 Lightning EV pickup truck. It seems the American automaker already has over 120,000 reservations for the Lighting in advance of its spring 2022 release!
Ford’s new plan includes a ramp up to 15,000 vehicles in 2022, 55,000 in 2023, and 80,000 in 2024. Ford will then target 160,000 vehicles in 2025 when the second-generation Lightning hits the road, which will be developed on Ford’s new electric-only TE1 platform.
The company will spend an additional $850 million in order to meet these new production goals. Ford has announced plans to spend over $30 billion on electric vehicle initiatives by 2025.
This isn’t the first time that Ford has beefed up production on the zero-emission pickup. Back in November, the automaker announced that it would add 350 more production jobs and increase production of the Lightning 50 percent over previous plans. So now, Ford is planning to produce three times as many electric F-150s as the original plan.
Ford’s Bets Big on EV Truck Category
When Ford unveiled the F-150 Lightning earlier this year, GreenCars was very impressed as were loyal F-150 followers. Ford’s head of electric vehicle development, Darren Palmer, announced at a press premiere for the Lightning that Ford was not getting into building electric pickup trucks just to build a few of them, and that the company is serious about going big in the EV truck category. “I think you can see we are not in this to build a couple of trucks and the facility that you saw President Biden visit, where the truck is going to be built, is significant.”
But despite this second production increase, Ford’s electrification plan is still minuscule compared to the amount of gas-powered F-150s they are planning to sell in the same timeframe. Ford sells almost one million F-series trucks per year. So in total, between this year and the end of 2024, that means Ford will sell about 140,000 electric F-150s (just 20,000 more than are already reserved) and nearly four million gas F-series trucks that will still be polluting the air we breathe.
Plus, this limited production plan could result in high prices for early buyers. Ford dealerships have been adding sizable markups to Mustang Mach-E vehicles. For an F-150 Lightning with 120,000 reservations in the can and only 15,000 vehicles being built in the first year, dealerships aren’t going to want to sell off a vehicle at MSRP if they have ten more buyers who are eager to buy that same vehicle.
Lightning in a Bottle
The F-150 Lightning is one of the most intriguing vehicles coming out next year, and has captured the imagination of a nation where the F-150 has been the best-selling vehicle for decades. Everyone is talking about this truck and everyone wants it. You could say that Ford has captured Lightning in a bottle. Now they have to produce. But they need to produce even more all-electric trucks to help turn around the climate emergency.
Under current production estimates, only six percent of the trucks Ford makes in the next five years will be electric. The vast majority of Ford’s trucks will still belch pollution. We suspect that once the Lightning is on the streets, the word of mouth from happy owners and positive reviews from the automotive press may help push Ford to build even more of its all-electric wonder truck. Fingers crossed.