Ford claims to have taken more than 44,500 reservations for the F-150 Lightning electric pickup within 48 hours of its official reveal last week.
Ford is taking refundable $100 deposits ahead of shipments due to start in the 2022 Northern Hemisphere spring (March to May).
CEO Jim Farley told TV network CNBC that the company was “off to the races” on the pre-order front. He since took to Twitter to provide an update on the pre-order situation.
Update, 24/05/21 8:45am – Ford’s CEO updated the numbers on his Twitter over the weekend.
To give this some context, Tesla’s Elon Musk claimed more than 250,000 Cybertruck pre-orders (also $100 refundable) inside a mere week of its late 2019 reveal. That’s a healthy cash injection in both cases, even if some will be refunded.
Other upcoming electric pickup trucks include the Hummer EV and Rivian R1T.
Ford’s potentially revolutionary EV – the F-Series is America’s top-selling vehicle and popular in US states where EVs are not – will be priced from a lower than expected $US39,974 ($AUD51,520), out to more than $US90,000.
There are up to $7500 worth of Federal tax credits to be claimed.
Speaking to US media Wednesday evening, Farley also said Ford would limit production in the vehicle’s first year and already had “made a call on volume”, but he declined to give the number.
Ford’s shares on the New York Stock Exchange climbed from $12.03 each the day before the F-150 Lightning reveal, to $12.66 shortly after.
The F-150 Lightning will be made at a new factory using “sustainable manufacturing processes” at Ford’s Rouge complex near its Dearborn, Michigan home base.
Ford calls it a “pillar” of its more than $US22 billion ($AUD28.3b) electric vehicle development plan, alongside other electrified takes on famous badges such as the Mustang Mach-E and Transit EV.
“For both Ford and the American auto industry, F-150 Lightning represents a defining moment as we progress toward a zero-emissions, digitally connected future,” said Bill Ford.
“F-Series is America’s best-selling truck for 44 years, the backbone of work across the country, and a trusted icon for generations of customers. Now we are revolutionising it for a new generation.”
Farley chimed in that “the F-150 Lightning is a massive moment for our Ford team. America’s No. 1 auto brand is going zero emissions with America’s favourite vehicle”.
“It’s quicker than a Raptor, with standard 4×4 and independent rear suspension; a power frunk, enough juice to run your house for three days or power an awesome tailgate; and it will forever improve with over-the-air updates.
“F-150 Lightning represents all that our country can do when we push for progress.”
Ford is claiming peak power and torque outputs of 420kW and 1050Nm of near instant torque, giving the flagship variant model a 4.5-second 0-100km/h capability.
It’s also targeting up to 900kg payload and 4.5-tonnes of towing capacity, plus driving range (EPA) depending on the (liquid-cooled) battery of between 370km and 480km per charge.
On a 150kW DC fast charger Ford claims you can add 100km of range in about 12 minutes, or charge up overnight on a home wallbox.
The company is also talking about the Lightning’s ability to serve as a 9.6kW backup generator for worksites, its 400-litre front-trunk (frunk), dual-motor variable 4×4, and inbuilt weight sensors/scale in the tub to tell you payload.