Ford says the new F-150 Lightning EV pickup is the smartest truck the company has ever made. It also happens to have the full weight of Ford’s electric future riding on its battery-laden frame. Sure, the Mach-E was a nice place to start, but the electric F-150 is the true litmus test for Ford. Can Dearborn build an electric truck that’s authentic to the brand’s heritage, equally as capable as its gas counterparts, and appealing to hardcore truck fans? Only time will tell.
A major piece of that puzzle is how much all this newness will cost, and for that we turn to Ford’s official MSRP of two of the Lightning’s trims. The first (and cheaper of the two) is a commercial model that starts at $41,669. The consumer-oriented Lightning XLT will be priced from $54,669. Both of those numbers are before applicable state and federal incentives are applied. Ford will also offer Lariat and Platinum trim levels for the new Lightning but is keeping the price of those trucks close to its chest for now.
We’ve already gone into detail about the specs of the new Lightning, and on paper it looks like Ford’s electric truck rivals its internal combustion engine-powered siblings. But what about when it comes down to dollars and cents? Well, when specced similarly to the Lightning (in a crew cab configuration with a 5.5-foot-long bed and 4WD), the base F-150 starts at $42,500 and the XLT comes in at $46,145.
That puts the base trucks within $831 of each other but leaves a sizable gap between the conventional and Lightning XLT trims—$8,524, in fact. It also puts it within spitting distance of the base Chevy Silverado, which will run you $42,710 when specified the same way. As for the Ram 1500, a Tradesman (i.e. an absolute basement spec 1500) starts at $37,990.
In both the XL and XLT ICE-powered Fords, the base powertrain is a 3.3-liter V-6 with 290 horsepower and 265 lb-ft of torque. A number of powertrains are optional on the standard F-150, but some require different trim levels to be selected, and all of them add to the truck’s base price. If you stick with the base powertrain, its horsepower and torque figures pale in comparison to what Ford says it’s targeting with the Lightning: a monstrous 563 horsepower and 775 lb-ft of torque out of the Lightning’s dual electric motors when equipped with the extended-range battery. Ford also says it hopes to get 300 miles on a single charge out of the bigger power pack. Standard batteries have a target range of 230 miles and horsepower drops to 426.
Like the ICE trucks, a massive infotainment display (a portrait-oriented one instead of landscape, in this case), over-the-air updates, and a fully digitized instrument cluster can be had on the Lightning. Their interiors look mostly the same, too. Which means the Lightning should work and feel like a truck—which it will need to in order to succeed.