Ford F-150 Lightning Production to Double From Consumer Demand

Sales of the F-150 Lightning are expected to kick off in spring 2022.

Ford F-150 Lightning


Interest in the Ford F-150 Lightning has continued to ramp up after Ford unveiled the electric pickup truck a few months ago. Since its debut in May, Ford has received over 120,000 reservations for the F-150 Lightning, which is more electric trucks than Ford plans to build in its first year. Thanks to the significant demand, the automaker has reportedly decided to invest $850 million to double production at its new plant—the Ford Rouge Electric Vehicle Center.

Ford is targeting annual production of more than 80,000 in 2024, up from its initial target of more than 40,000, reports Reuters. The increase is also on top of the 50% boost that Ford stated last November.

Sales of the F-150 Lightning are expected to kick off in spring 2022. The ramp-up also includes plans to build 15,000 electric trucks in 2022 and 55,000 in 2023. The second-generation F-150 Lightning is slated to arrive in late 2025 as a 2026 model and by then, Ford expects to build just shy of 160,000 electric trucks a year.

We can expect even bigger things from the F-150 Lightning when the second generation arrives and it switches to Ford’s new TE1 platform, which it is developing specifically for battery-electric vehicles. The 2022 F-150 Lightning is based on a heavily modified version of the combustion-powered F-150. The F-150 Lightning is offered with two battery packs, which gives it either 230 miles or 300 miles of range. We can expect the next-generation F-150 Lightning to have an even longer driving range.

"We are excited with customer demand for the F-150 Lightning and already have 120,000 customer reservations, and we will continue to look for ways to break constraints and meet customer demand," Ford said in a statement.

A significant portion of the reservations for the F-150 Lightning is coming from commercial customers that are interested in replacing their existing fleets with zero-emissions vehicles. Interest will likely continue to rise once the F-150 Lightning hits the road, as buyers are more exposed to it.

This is great news, as skeptics have worried individual buyers would not want to give up their gas-powered pickups for electric models. Trucks sit at the top of the sales charts, so a transition to electric trucks is lauded by many as a positive change. By electrifying some of their biggest sellers, automakers will get even closer to their goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. President Joe Biden, who said “the future of the auto industry is electric," recently signed an executive order that sets a target for zero-emissions vehicles to account for half of all vehicles sold in the U.S. by 2030.

We will have to wait and see how many of the 120,000 reservations for the electric F-150 convert to actual orders. Given the number of electric trucks Ford plans to build over the next few years, expect the F-150 Lightning inventories to be scarce on dealer lots. The starting price is also going to be hard to pass up: the pricing for the F-150 Lightning starts at $39,974, before any federal or state incentives are applied. That means that in some states, the F-150 Lightning will start under $30,000.

Ford will soon have more competition when other electric pickup trucks arrive, like the GMC Hummer EV, Rivian R1T, and Tesla Cybertruck. Rivian expects to start deliveries of the R1T in September, while sales of the GMC Hummer EV are slated to begin in fall 2022. Chevrolet has also announced it is working on an all-electric Silverado, which will arrive with a driving range over 400 miles. Chevrolet has not confirmed when the electric Silverado will arrive, but it’s expected to be launched before 2025 since General Motors plans to offer at least 30 electric vehicles by then.