2022 F-150 Lightning EV | Driving Impressions & First Look | Game Changer

SID297

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2022 F-150 Lightning EV | Driving Impressions & First Look | Game Changer
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Ford is moving full steam ahead with its plans for vehicle electrification. The Blue Oval’s modern EV era kicked off last year with the launch of the Mach-E SUV. It was a ground up design that Ford poured untold millions of development dollars into. However; when it came time to pivot to Ford’s bread-and-butter market segment, full-size trucks, the crew in Dearborn took a different approach. They took the already stellar 2021+ F-150 cab, tweeked it a bit around the edges, and bolted it all to a unique EV chassis.

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Ice Blue Silver Metallic may be may current favorite F-150 color option.

The result is the all-new 2022 F-150 Lightning. I know many of the SVTP faithful may not be thrilled with this latest application of the legendary Lightning nameplate, but I’m going to ask you to put those feelings aside and come at this one with an open mind. This Lightning packs a 131kWh battery pack, dual motors with a locking rear differential, 580HP & 775TQ, and 330 miles of available of range. Those specs barely scratch the surface.


This is a longer video, but these Ford engineers go in depth on the Lightning's electrical architecture/systems/capabilities.

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Independent rear suspension with coilover shocks is a new setup for the F-150. I like this version much more than the setup found on Expedition.

You also over a ton of payload capacity, 10,000 pounds of towing capability, and a mid-4 second 0-60 time. That’s all before we talk about any of the Pro-Power On Board feature. Essential, the Lightning can be used to conservatively power a typical house for well over a week. Everywhere you look, both inside and out, you will find a variety of electrical outlets. There’s an entire panel full of them inside the frunk, which can also hold several hundred pounds of cargo and doubles as an ice chest.


We explored every Lightning model Ford had on hand. I found the lower trim level interiors quite impressive for the money.

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You can fit a lot of stuff in the space formerly occupied by a DOHC V8.

I know a lot of you guys are interested in the trucks range while towing, but the basic answer is that it’s highly variable. You have consider the weight and aerodynamic drag of the load, the terrain you’re traversing, speed you’re running, traffic conditions, temperature, etc. Luckily, Ford has developed a cloud based system that takes all those data points from you, and potentially many many thousands of other Lightning owners, to accurately predict your range while towing. That’s one of many software features loaded into the Lightning that helps make the ownership experience simple.


Though my time behind the wheel of the new Lightning was brief, I was able to get a feel for certain characteristics that impressed me. I'm looking forward to the chance to perform a more detailed review.


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All the frame componentry seems to be very heavy duty. This lower control arm bolt is huge.

I really feel that it is something Ford spent quite a bit of time striving for, and they accomplished it. Anyone who has spent any time at all in a newer F-150 will be instantly feel comfortable behind the wheel of a Lightning. While I was only able to get a very limited amount of seat time, I do feel I was able to get a decent grasp on some of the driving dynamics. First; other than the Gen 3 Raptor, the Lightning is easily the best riding and driving new F-150 you can buy.

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That's a somewhat different warning message...

I realize that’s a strong statement, but that was my major takeaway. The Lightning Exclusive independent rear suspension is tuned to perfection for general on road use. I’ve not hesitated to critique the ride of the main-line F-150s over the past several years. I feel those spring and shock packages have been tuned too softly. All that changes with Lightning. The suspension feels firm and substantial without being harsh. I’ll tentatively say that the chassis dynamics engineers should be proud, but I’m going to withhold my final judgment until I get more real-world miles under me in this truck.

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I like the styling of this new badge.

After my brief drive, I switched off with one of Ford’s professional drivers to take a ride-along highlighted by a full throttle (maximum potentiometer???) blast. Ford has made a point to tout the acceleration performance of the Lightning EV, and it is impressive for what it is. No; you’re not going to challenge a Mach-E GT with it, but it is quickest currently available F-150. There’s something to be said about that, especially considering that the Lightning has a 6,900 pound curb weight. You’re looking at a sub-5 second 0-60, and a nearly silent ride getting there.

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You'll notice that all the Lightning exclusive wheels have been designed with aerodynamic efficiency in mind.

I thoroughly enjoyed my limited time in San Antonio with the new F-150 Lightning. The presentations were quite in-depth, and I’m really just scratching the surface of the details surrounding Ford’s latest EV. However, I can guarantee you that I will be bringing you a much more detailed assessment of the truck in the hopefully near future. Until then; all I can say is that if you get a chance to drive the new F-150 Lightning, take it. I think you’ll be surprised how good it really is.

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The Lightning Pro is the base model, but it still has a very nicely appointed interior.


-SID297
 

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TORQUERULES

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My wife is fully on board with me getting a decently equipped Pro, but it looks like there's going to be a weight as everything is sold out as far as orders go.
 

CobraBob

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VERY interesting video. I'm starting to really warm up to the Lightning. The subject of intelligent charging is super interesting, offering so much more than a "truck" for the home owner. Long video, but I found it interesting and full of great facts.
 

OX1

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Towing range? Need to go 350 miles round trip in one day towing 9200 and about 1000 lbs of spare parts in the bed. Destination is remote (offroad park), no charging there. Trip takes 6-7 hours round trip, so day is long enough without having to charge, what I'm guessing would be approx 3 times (I'm guessing 100 mile range based on recent EV towing tests).
 

7998

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Nice write up Sid. I notice in the pictures one truck has the current big screen and the other has the Expedition screen. Is Ford moving to the vertical screen? I personally don't like the tablet style screens.
I'm looking forward to seeing you do a review on your home turf, hopefully with a little off-roading.
 

SID297

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VERY interesting video. I'm starting to really warm up to the Lightning. The subject of intelligent charging is super interesting, offering so much more than a "truck" for the home owner. Long video, but I found it interesting and full of great facts.

For the price of two Tesla Power Wall units (basically the minimum amount you need to be actually useful in a house) you're halfway to buying a F-150 Pro model.

Nice write up Sid. I notice in the pictures one truck has the current big screen and the other has the Expedition screen. Is Ford moving to the vertical screen? I personally don't like the tablet style screens.
I'm looking forward to seeing you do a review on your home turf, hopefully with a little off-roading.

When we get one it is going to tow and go to the drag strip. You get the vert screen in the higher trim levels. I prefer the standard screen as well, partly because it comes with physical buttons for the HVAC controls.
 

Stanley

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Man I wish I could put bags under the hood of my truck - said no truck owner ever lol. Looking forward to seeing the resale value of these in 8 years. Hot potato!
We use my truck for trips and I bought some plastic tubs to put bags in so they don't get wet in the bed. Having a place to put them and not have to worry about that would be great.
 

andymarkv

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I'm a little disappointed that the charge rate is only 150kW.(commercial chargers claim to provide 300kW+)
Also, from Tesla's 4680 battery tech...it sure looks like there is a lot of battery performance left to capture from physical design.
I'm definitely interested(how can you NOT like 775lb-ft instantly), but will not be an early adopter.
 

Stanley

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No trips in this truck unless it’s a trip to the grocery store and back.
These manufacturers need to put fast charging stations at Buc-ee's. If I can get a decent percent of battery life in 20-30 minutes it would be perfect. It takes me that long to get my kids out of there.
 

SSSSSSSSSSSSVT

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These manufacturers need to put fast charging stations at Buc-ee's. If I can get a decent percent of battery life in 20-30 minutes it would be perfect. It takes me that long to get my kids out of there.
Then you could pre pay for your energy when buying the truck and then also pay as you go at the buccees. Then in 8 years you could pre pay again. Where do I sign up?
 

SID297

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We use my truck for trips and I bought some plastic tubs to put bags in so they don't get wet in the bed. Having a place to put them and not have to worry about that would be great.

You are basically getting the added utility of a Crown Vic sized trunk, without giving up interior or bed space.

Is there an FX-4 version in the works?

I'm sure there'll be many more trim levels in the future. It comes with AWD and a rear e-locker right now.

I'm a little disappointed that the charge rate is only 150kW.(commercial chargers claim to provide 300kW+)
Also, from Tesla's 4680 battery tech...it sure looks like there is a lot of battery performance left to capture from physical design.
I'm definitely interested(how can you NOT like 775lb-ft instantly), but will not be an early adopter.

I spent a lot of time talking to Ford engineers about charging infrastructure and they know it is currently inadequate. Just think of the number of DC fast charge stations you've seen where you could pull through and charge while towing a trailer. I've never seen a single one set up like that.

Also, battery technology is improving at an impressive pace. I image 10 years from now current battery technology will be the equivalent of comparing a SBF to a Gen 3 Coyote,

These manufacturers need to put fast charging stations at Buc-ee's. If I can get a decent percent of battery life in 20-30 minutes it would be perfect. It takes me that long to get my kids out of there.

So one of the points made about charging stations during these presentations was that for safety reasons, they are placed a good distance away from any fuel dispensing equipment.
 

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