The F-150 Lightning, Ford's electric version of its iconic pickup truck, loses about a quarter of its driving range when it's fully loaded with cargo, according to a test by AAA.
As reported by the Western Journal , AAA did a comprehensive test on the truck's battery by accounting for towing and cargo capacity factors.
With 1,400 pounds of sandbags, the truck's range dropped from 278 miles to 210 miles, or a 24.5% decrease.
The version of the truck used in the test was rated as having a 300-mile range, which means owners could lose up to 90 miles on their charge if they hook up a trailer before heading out.
“Our testing revealed a significant range reduction, but it’s important to note that the Lightning was loaded to near its maximum capacity,” said Greg Brannon , the director of AAA Automotive Engineering.
The listed 300 miles per battery charge is significantly less than the gas-powered version, which will drive for 500 miles on a full tank.
According to AAA, the model used was just 110 pounds short of its max payload, which would be 1,510 pounds. However, according to the Verge , Ford lists the Lightning’s maximum payload as 2,235 pounds with the standard electric battery and 1,952 pounds with an extended-range battery. Those models could theoretically stand to lose much more mileage if packed to full capacity.
AAA also warned, “In the case of battery electric pickups used as work vehicles, permanent loads (such as equipment racks, toolboxes, and equipment trays built into the vehicle) will reduce the range at all times, even without additional cargo.”
The not-so-great news comes after a huge price increase for the electric vehicle. This caused buyer confidence in the truck to drop, according to a report from the Western Journal , which cited a Ford dealership sales manager.
The F-150 Lightning was originally announced at $39,975 in 2021, the report stated, only for customers who reserved the trucks to see a massive price increase to $59,974 in 2023.
"I had to cancel my F-150 Lightning reservation due to massive (and I mean MASSIVE) price hikes and lack of heat pump on the battery. 'Oh, you lose half your range when it's cold outside!'" one alleged customer wrote .
Another would-be customer complained that he would not be able to buy a model below $63,000 .
“What we’re seeing is that we are having a lot of customers just canceling [reservations],” said the manager of a Kansas Ford dealership.
"Customers tell me that they were looking to get in at that $40,000 truck, but now that’s $60,000, and you can’t even get that truck since they’re sold out of them. Now you’ll have to pay $65,000 minimum; that’s just a whole different level," the dealer added.
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