'It's time': Ford teases official F-150 Lightning launch date

Jordyn Grzelewski
The Detroit News

Ford Motor Co. on Wednesday announced that April 26 will mark the official launch date for F-150 Lightning, the all-electric version of its best-selling pickup truck.

"It's time. #F150 Lightning," Ford CEO Jim Farley said in a tweet Wednesday morning, with an image declaring that "F-150 Lightning strikes" April 26.

The automaker will mark the launch with an event at the Rouge Electric Vehicle Center in Dearborn, where the electric truck is assembled.

The launch of F-150 Lightning will be closely watched by industry observers, as it marks the electrification of America's best-selling truck — and thus considered a bellwether for mainstream EV adoption.

Ford had previously said Lightning would begin deliveries sometime this spring and stopped taking deposits on the truck in December after receiving 200,000 reservations ahead of launch. The company opened up the order bank in January.

Executives have said early demand for the truck — as measured by reservations requiring a refundable deposit — far exceeded their expectations. Ford already is moving to double annual production capacity of the Lightning to 150,000 units per year, a target it expects to reach sometime next year.

Overall, the automaker is eyeing annual production of more than 2 million EVs globally by 2026. That would represent about one-third of its global volume, and the company expects that proportion to rise to half by 2030.

Last month, Ford confirmed the final EPA-estimated battery range for F-150 Lightning. The truck's range on a single charge is between 230 miles and 320 miles, depending on trim level and battery pack.

Here is the breakdown by trim level:

  • F-150 Lightning Pro standard range: 230 miles
  • F-150 Lightning Pro extended range (fleet only): 320 miles
  • F-150 Lightning XLT SR: 230 miles
  • F-150 Lightning XLT ER: 320 miles
  • F-150 Lightning Lariat SR: 230 miles
  • F-150 Lightning Lariat ER: 320 miles
  • F-150 Lightning Platinum: 300 miles

F-150 Lightning's pricing starts at just under $40,000 for the work truck version, excluding destination charges. The base MSRP for the Platinum model is $90,874. Those prices don't take into account federal incentives available for EV buyers.

Crosstown rival General Motors Co. plans to launch a 400-mile-range, fleet-focused work truck version of the forthcoming electric Silverado in spring 2023, with the electric Silverado RST due to arrive in late 2023.

jgrzelewski@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @JGrzelewski