Home Electric Cars Ford working hard on the Ford F-150 Lightning’s range estimator – Report

Ford working hard on the Ford F-150 Lightning’s range estimator – Report

Tom Maloughney of InsideEVs recently got a factory tour and a peek inside the Ford F-150 Lightning. Unfortunately, Maloughney wasn’t allowed to record or even take pictures of the actual test ride, but that is expected, given that the truck is in development. However, he does give us his insight into some of the other features of the F-150 Lightning.

The truck was driven by Darren Palmer Ford’s Global Manager of Electric Vehicles. In the report, Maloughney says that no one outside of Ford, except for President Joe Biden, has driven the F-150. The vehicle in question was an early testing prototype, and while Palmer wasn’t exactly shy to show off how powerful the truck was, fit and finish levels obviously didn’t match.

Ford F-150 Lightning drive

However, Maloughney does say that the Extended range battery truck that he was driven around in at least felt like it had acceleration comparable to his 2021 Tesla Model 3 dual-motor long range. Maloughney pointed out that Ford was underselling the range of the F-150 to the public. While the truck gets an EPA estimated range of 300 miles, this includes 1,000 lbs of cargo, suggesting there is actually more range on offer when only moving people or even with a lighter load.

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On the Range Estimator

Ford modified the instrument cluster not to show the range of the truck. However, Maloughney went through the different screens on the infotainment unit and came across one which showcased 472 miles. Ford did this with the Mustang Mach-E, and the F-150 Lightning’s range will be even more prone to outside influences depending on what it is being used for.

Ford F-150 Lightning offroad
The Ford F-150 Lightning will have two variants: Standard and Extended range. Image: Ford

Maloughney tried to get Palmer to talk about the range, but he offered him something else. Palmer said they are working very hard on a range estimator, which uses the truck’s onboard scale, weighs the cargo and the passenger, and considers the kind of trailer you are pulling through a trailer configurator. The goal, according to Palmer, is to get the range accuracy to within 5-10 percent.


Ford has revealed some of the 15-100 percent charging times, suggesting that the 150 kW DC fast charger could charge a standard range truck from 15-80 percent in 44 minutes with 41 miles being added in 10 minutes while the Extended range could be charged from 15-80 percent in 41 minutes and with 54 miles added in 10 minutes. The numbers helped InsideEVs Mark Kane cook up rough estimates of battery sizes: 115 kWh net/125 kWh total for the standard range and 155 kWh net/170 kWh total for the extended range.

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Ford F-150 Lightning camping frunk
The Mega-Power Frunk is the largest front trunk among EVs today. Image: Ford


And finally, Maloughney also got to check out the Ford F-150 Lightning’s front trunk, or as Ford calls it, Mega-Power Frunk. It is the largest front trunk on any EV so far and holds close to 400 lbs of cargo with 400 liters of space. The vehicle’s grille is integrated into the hood, making it easier to drop off and remove heavy items.

Overall, Maloughney’s visit was fruitful and gave us a better understanding of what we can expect from the F-150 Lightning.