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2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Is an Electric Truck With 563 Horsepower, Can Power Your House

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Is an Electric Truck With 563 Horsepower, Can Power Your House

  • New electric version of the F-150
  • Useful tech options, including the ability to use it as a battery for your home
  • Independent rear suspension should improve ride quality
  • F-150 Lightning Pro fleet variant offered for commercial customers

What is the F-150 Lightning?

As its name suggests, the Lightning is the all-new electric version of the F-150. But unlike some other upcoming splashy EV trucks such as the Rivian R1T, GMC Hummer EV and Tesla Cybertruck, the 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning is meant to be pretty normal. It looks a lot like a regular gas-powered F-150 and will have a similar starting price too: about $41,000. The truck will also qualify for the $7,500 federal tax credit, as well as other incentives provided by your state, city or power company.

"Game changer" might be an overused phrase these days, but an electric version of Ford's most popular vehicle has the potential to introduce a new swath of customers to EVs and win over skeptics. We can't think of a more appropriate description for this new electric F-150 that arrives at Ford dealerships nationwide starting in the spring of 2022.

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning

What's under the F-150 Lightning's hood?

The Lightning starts its life as an F-150 SuperCrew (or crew cab) with a five-and-a-half foot bed. But instead of a gasoline engine and drivetrain, the Lightning has two electric motors and all-wheel drive. The Lightning will also come with a fully independent rear suspension, which should translate to improved handling and a more comfortable ride compared to the regular F-150's traditional solid-axle rear suspension.

The standard battery pack and dual-motor setup produces 426 horsepower and a massive 775 lb-ft of torque — that's more torque than any other F-150 currently on sale. For comparison, the F-150's most powerful non-Raptor engine is the turbocharged V6 hybrid that makes 430 hp and 570 lb-ft.

Ford says the standard battery pack will deliver about 230 miles of range on a full charge. This is respectable for an EV, and especially something as big and heavy as an F-150. But this standard battery pack might be insufficient for you if you think you'd use your Lightning for frequent long trips or regular long-distance towing. We ourselves have demonstrated how towing a trailer can significantly decrease an EV's range

If that's you, consider getting the F-150 Lightning's extended-range battery. The larger battery not only provides an estimated 300 miles of range, but it also boosts the truck's output to 563 hp (the 775 lb-ft stays the same). Ford says a Lightning with the big battery can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in the mid-4-second range, which would make it quicker than the upcoming F-150 Raptor. 

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning

How's the F-150 Lightning's interior?

The Lightning's interior is almost identical to that of the regular F-150 crew cab. In practical terms, you'll get a spacious cabin that marries intuitively executed physical controls and an easy-to-use central touchscreen. Available features are also similar to what you'll find in the standard F-150. These include the available fold-out center console table, front seats that recline nearly flat so you can stretch out and take a nap, and a lockable storage bin under the rear seat. One notable optional upgrade is a 15.5-inch vertically aligned touchscreen. This is the same one that's in Ford's Mustang Mach-E EV.

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning

How's the F-150 Lightning's tech?

The Ford F-150 Lightning offers a number of clever technology features that are distinct from those in the standard F-150. Ford's upcoming hands-free driving system, BlueCruise, will be available on the Lightning. It works on more than 100,000 miles of premapped divided highways to take the stress out of long-haul driving by taking control of the truck's steering, acceleration and braking. While it is a hands-free system, BlueCruise uses cameras to monitor the driver to make sure the person's in the pilot's seat and paying attention.

Like both the Mustang Mach-E and F-150, the Lightning can receive over-the-air updates through its infotainment system. These updates (Power-Ups, in Ford speak) can give your truck the latest software and features without having to visit a dealership. The Lightning will also let you use your smartphone as the truck's key so that you don't need to use a separate key fob.

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning

How do I charge the F-150 Lightning?

If you opt for the extended-range battery pack, Ford will provide a robust home charging station (Ford Charge Station Pro) for free. Installation will be at your expense, but this is quite a nice perk for new EV owners since most popular home charging stations cost hundreds of dollars for the unit alone and generally aren't as powerful.

The Lightning can gain up to 30 miles of driving range per hour using the Ford Charge Station Pro. But even if you don't get Ford's charger, you should consider a dedicated charging station or 240-volt outlet a necessity for the F-150 Lightning. Attempting to charge using a household-style 120-volt outlet will be impractical because it would take too long to recharge.

The Lightning also supports DC fast charging for quick top-offs while on the road. Plugging into a 150-kW station can charge the battery from 15% to 80% in about 40 minutes, Ford says.

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning

This electric F-150 will also offer a few special features you don't commonly see on EVs. First up is the ability to power your home with electricity in the event of a power outage. If you've got your truck connected to Ford's charging station and a power inverter, the Lightning can provide up to 9.6 kW worth of constant electricity. With a fully charged battery, Ford says it's possible that you could use the Lighting to power your home for a few days or even longer if you ration the power.

The Lightning will also offer the F-150's existing Pro Power Onboard feature, which consists of household-style electrical plugs in the bed, cab and front trunk that you can use to power tools and other electronic devices (delivering as much as 9.6 kW combined). Finally, Ford says it's working on a feature that can use the truck's battery to power the home during high-cost peak-energy hours and then charge the truck during off-hours, helping to save money on your home electric bill.

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning

How's the F-150 Lightning's towing and hauling?

Because hauling, and more significantly towing, can have a significant impact on range, the F-150 Lightning's two battery packs offer different peak capabilities. A Lightning with the standard-range battery has a max payload capacity of 2,000 pounds. Ford hasn't said what payload capacity will be with the presumably heavier extended-range battery pack, but it does say that version of the truck will provide up to 10,000 pounds of towing capacity when equipped with the Max Trailer Tow package.

In addition to bed and in-cabin storage, the F-150 Lightning joins other EVs in opening up the space under the hood for extra cargo capacity. The power front trunk, or frunk, provides around 14 cubic feet of space and, per Ford, can fit two sets of golf clubs. Along with four power outlets and two USB ports, the frunk is water-resistant and even features drain plugs.

Like the Mustang Mach-E, the F-150 Lightning adjusts its range projections based not only on route, traffic and topography but usage as well. For instance, the Onboard Scales tech that debuted in the F-150 — where the truck uses its sensors to approximate payload — adjusts estimated range based on payload weight. It does the same when you tow, by sensing the tongue load. And when you tell it the size of the trailer, it figures out the air resistance and factors that into the range estimate as well.

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning

What are the F-150 Lightning's trim levels?

The F-150 Lightning will be available in four trim levels at launch: Pro, XLT, Lariat and Platinum. All Lightnings come in a crew-cab body style with a 5.5-foot bed. The Pro, XLT and Lariat all come with a 98-kWh battery pack. A larger 131-kWh battery pack is optional on the XLT and Lariat and standard on the Platinum.

Pro
This work-oriented trim comes standard with:

  • 18-inch wheels
  • LED headlights
  • Vinyl seats
  • Black vinyl floors
  • Dual-zone automatic climate control
  • Keyless entry
  • Digital instrument cluster
  • 12-inch infotainment screen
  • Integrated navigation system
  • Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration (includes wireless connectivity)
  • Six-speaker sound system
  • Eight 120-volt household style power outlets (four in the front trunk, two in the bed and two in the cab)
  • Electronic-locking rear axle (can enhance traction in low-speed situations)
  • Class IV trailer hitch

Standard driver aids include:

  • Automatic emergency braking (warns if a front impact is imminent and applies the brakes if you don't respond in time)
  • Blind-spot monitor with rear cross-traffic alert (warns you if a vehicle is in your blind spot during a lane change or while in reverse)
  • Lane keeping system (makes minor steering corrections to help keep the vehicle centered in its lane)
  • Rear parking sensors (alert you to obstacles that may not be visible behind the vehicle when parking)

XLT
Includes all of the Pro's features and adds:

  • Cloth seats and flooring
  • Leather-wrapped steering wheel
  • Power-adjustable driver's seat
  • Power-adjustable pedals
  • Rear-window defroster
  • Underseat rear storage
  • Front parking sensors
  • 360-degree camera system (gives you a top-down view of the Lightning and its surroundings for tight parking situations)

A 312A High optional package is available for the XLT. It bundles:

  • 20-inch wheels
  • Power-adjustable front passenger seat
  • Heated front seats and steering wheel
  • Keyless entry
  • Power tailgate
  • Pro Power Onboard (upgrades the household-style power outlets to provide a maximum of 9.6 kW of electricity)
  • Adaptive cruise control (adjusts speed to maintain a constant distance between the vehicle and the car in front)
  • Lane keeping system (makes minor steering corrections to help keep the vehicle centered in its lane)
  • Evasive steering assist (enhances the forward collision mitigation system with steering-based collision avoidance)

Lariat
The Lariat comes with all of the above and further adds:

  • LED cargo bed lighting
  • Power-folding side mirrors
  • Power-sliding rear window
  • Leather upholstery
  • Ventilated front seats
  • Eight-speaker B&O audio system
  • 15-inch touchscreen display
  • Wireless charging pad

A 511A High package for the Lariat is available. It comes with:

  • Twin-panel panoramic sunroof
  • Ford's Blue Cruise system (uses the vehicle's advanced driver aids to further provide hands-free driving capability on select divided highways)
  • Power-adjustable steering wheel
  • Rain-sensing wipers
  • Heated rear seats
  • Upgraded rear underseat storage
  • Tow Technology package (detailed below)

Platinum
Comes with nearly all of the bells and whistles, including the larger 131-kWh battery pack. It has everything listed above plus:

  • 22-inch wheels
  • Upgraded leather upholstery
  • Massaging front seats
  • Upgraded interior trim
  • 18-speaker B&O audio system
  • Max Trailer tow package (detailed below)
  • Home charger (Ford Charge Station Pro; installed by third-party supplier)

There are two tow-oriented packages that are either optional or standard depending on the trim level. They are:

Max Trailer Tow package

  • Boosts towing capacity up to a possible maximum of 10,000 pounds

Tow Technology package

  • Pro Trailer Backup Assist (knob-based steering system to make reversing with a trailer easier)
  • Trailer brake controller (allows adjustment of a trailer's brakes from the cab)
  • Onboard scales (measure the weight of the truck's payload)
2022 Ford F-150 Lightning

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning

Edmunds says

Even if you don't opt for the big-battery version and all the neat upgrades, the Lightning has all the tech features and practical considerations to make this electric F-150 a success. Check back with Edmunds in the coming months as we'll continue to add Lightning coverage about features, driving performance, range and more.