Thinking of Going Electric? 10 Compelling Reasons to Get Excited About the 2023 Ford F-150 Lightning

I regularly talk with pickup owners who are intrigued by the capabilities and perks the latest electric trucks provide, but hesitant to actually take the leap from gas power. If that sounds familiar, I’ve got great news! After closely tracking its development the last two years and now seeing early reviews and experiences from owners, I can safely say the all-new 2023 Ford F-150 Lightning electric truck checks all the boxes.

I’m convinced the Lightning alleviates most typical concerns over electric vehicle (EV) practicality for truck owners. What Ford engineered is not a “compliance car” meant solely to garner green credits or good PR. Instead, it’s a functional, innovative pickup equally adept traversing work sites during the week as hitting the lake for weekends.

The surge in pre-orders to over 200,000 even before first deliveries further signals Ford has an instant segment leader on its hands. As production ramps up over 2023, here’s my take on 10 compelling reasons you should have the Lightning on your shopping list.

Game-Changing Performance and Capability

Let’s kick things off with what matters most in any pickup – its capability when called to haul and tow. The Lightning shatters perceptions about EV truck performance with specs that outpace even Ford’s iconic high-output gas models:

  • Quickest acceleration: The dual-motor 4×4 Lightning races from 0-60 mph in as little as 4.3 seconds based on early test drives. For context, that beats even Ford’s fire-breathing 450+ horsepower Raptor model!
  • Mountain-moving torque: Peak torque from the electric motors is a staggering 775 lb-ft, available instantly. For pulling boats, campers, equipment and cargo up steep terrain, raw torque trumps horsepower.
  • Max tow rating over 10,000 pounds: Depending on configuration, the Lightning’s towing capability matches or exceeds most equivalent gas F-150 versions. Only the heavy-duty F-250/F-350 models offer more.
  • 320+ mile max range: Equipped with the extended range battery, Lightning is targeting an EPA-verified 320 miles on a full charge. That enables remote work sites or road trips between charging stops.

In early testing, publications like Car & Driver already call it the “quickest, most powerful, and most electron-stuffed Ford pickup ever.” I can confirm the Lightning drives, hauls and plays like few trucks before it after spending extensive seat time during a first-drive event. This redefines expectations of EV capabilities – and sets a new bar competitors will struggle matching.

Unlock Hidden Cargo Space with the Mega Power Frunk

Since electric vehicles don’t need bulky gas engines up front, manufacturers utilize the extra space for storage bins. Tesla’s “frunk” trunks sparked the trend, but Ford’s Mega Power Frunk perfects it.

Spanning a cavernous 14.1 cubic feet, the watertight front trunk space fits two carry-on suitcases or even two golf bags standing upright. Owners online have shown it easily swallows lumber, surfboards, rock climbing gear and other long items other trucks couldn’t dream of fitting in the cabin. The fold-down divider and interior power outlets transform it into the ultimate portable toolkit that electricians, contractors and creatives are already utilizing.

Ford also offers handy accessories to customize your frunk’s layout. When I helped a friend pick up his Lightning, we opted for the inexpensive cargo net, protective mat and dividers to keep all our essentials securely in place inside the locker. If you’ve ever cursed trying to juggle messy cargo that slides around your truck bed, you’ll love this game-changing enclosed space.

Power Your Home, Charge Devices or Tools from the Truck

Gasoline going bad or generators running out of fuel arefamiliar headaches when storms or accidents knock out electricity to homes and worksites. The Lightning provides backup electrical power rivaling standalone generators – no gas required!

Through what Ford dubs the industry-first Intelligent Backup Power system, the truck’s battery packs can beam electricity directly into your home’s circuits. There’s an automatic transfer switch installed behind the outlet panel that isolates household and truck power. When an outage is detected, it seamlessly starts drawing current from the Lightning automatically.

On the extended range battery, Ford says you can power the average home’s essentials like fridge, lights or medical devices for up to three days without recharging the truck. Running a 30 amp draw, that also equates to:

  • 35 hours for a large residential HVAC system
  • 60 hours for a TV/internet router/modem
  • 90-plus hours of CPAP machine runtime

Even if not powering your whole home, having receptacles always available in the frunk, bed and cab means charging laptops, phones or running electric tools off the truck at remote work sites. No more noisy, exhaust-spewing generators at the campsite either!

Dramatically Lower Operating Costs

It’s no secret gasoline prices have swung wildly recent years without much correlation to underlying supply and demand. Whether paying $4, $5 or $6 per gallon nationally, fuel remains most owners’ #1 vehicle expense over time.

Going electric insulates you from gas prices with “fuel” costs 4-5x cheaper per mile driven. On average, Lightning owners will save around $950 yearly over equivalent gas F-150 models based on EPA ratings.

Of course, electricity rates do vary by state and time of use. But even on the high end around $0.20-$0.25 per kWh, you’re looking at $10-$15 to “fill up” the Lightning battery from empty. Compared to $75-$100 frequenting the pump monthly, the savings add up quick.

There’s also drastically less maintenance required without engines or transmissions. Brake pad replacements are less frequent as well thanks to regenerative braking recharging batteries while decelerating. Add in many buyers qualifying for the $7,500 federal tax credit plus state incentives, and the Lightning proves cheaper to own long run.

Packed with Consumer Tech that Makes Life Easier

Today’s trucks now rival luxury SUVs with their tech-laden interiors. The Lightning pushes that even further courtesy benefits of EV design. The fronts lack engines leaving room for a spacious “frunk” storage locker we already discussed.

But freeing up space also allowed Ford’s designers to creatively reshape the cabin. The front now offers an expansive center console bin able to swallow large purses or backpacks – something drivers and middle seat passengers will appreciate.

I’m also blown away by the standard 12-inch touchscreen angled towards the driver. Crisp graphics paired with the latest Sync 4A software enable Apple Carplay/Android Auto alongside Alexa integration. Cloud-based navigation means traffic, charging point and other helpful data is continuously updated.

Of course you also get a FordPass smartphone app allowing owners to perform popular tasks like:

  • Check charging status and battery range estimates
  • Locate over 200,000 public charging plugs across networks
  • Pre-condition battery temp while plugged in
  • Lock/unlock the truck or pop the frunk via phone

These are just a sampling of smart touches that impressed during my Lightning outings. Truly forward-thinking amenities you’ll love rather than gimmicks you’ll ignore.

Charging Infrastructure and Public Networks Expand Nationwide

For truck duties like hauling equipment to job sites or trailering RVs into the countryside, range anxiety over available charging access remains top of mind. That’s why Ford smartly bundles free access to their FordPass public charging network with Lightning purchases.

With over 200,000 plugs across North America and rapid expansion underway, the FordPass network already offers more chargers than locations of popular chains like Starbucks or Target! Finding a station along your route – whether driving locally or cross country – will only get easier in coming years as infrastructure matures.

adapters allowing access to Tesla’s industry-leading Supercharger network are due by the end of 2023 as well. Combined with other partnerships Ford continues forging, Lightning owners gain confidence in charging solutions tailored to truck owners logging high mileage.

Make no mistake – interest and incentives for businesses to install EV plugs are scaling dramatically. The infrastructure required to road trip with Lightnings, Rivians and other coming electric trucks will look far different soon thanks to private and public investments.

Futureproof Your Investment with Updates Over the Air

Here’s an underrated Lightning highlight I encourage all shoppers to consider: over-the-air software update capability. Direct from the dashboard touchscreen, Ford can deploy improvements and additional functionality without visiting dealerships.

Compare that to traditional gas vehicles remaining static aside from minor warranty fixes following purchase. Lightning tech by contrast has room to grow smarter and more capable over years of ownership.

Early updates are already enhancing navigation, adding SiriusXM 360L satellite radio integration and improving range calculations as Ford gathers more real-world data. Additional driver-assist aids are likely coming to expand hands-free highway driving via BlueCruise – Ford’s counter to Tesla’s Autopilot and GM’s SuperCruise.

Sync software engineers are also investigating using the battery capacity to loop energy back to the grid during peak electricity demand. Owners could see financial incentives for plugging in during designated times. These innovations highlight why software updatability ensures your tech investment stays fresher longer.

Strong Demand Forecasts Excellent Resale Value

With over 200,000 reservations already and order timing extending well into 2024 model years, demand is clearly outpacing Ford’s production ramp-up plans for the Lightning. constrained new vehicle supply across auto segments tells us strong resale values will likely carry forward as well.

Short supply combined with red-hot demand creates a perfect storm for the Lightning to potentially appreciate in value rather than depreciate instantly like many vehicles. savvy early adopters recognize pre-ordering now guarantees access to the full $7,500 federal tax credit plus custom configuration and incentives that may shift over coming years.

Rivian R1T models are reselling for well over original MSRP in some cases currently. The Lightning as future collectible icon could see similar demand from enthusiasts wanting a piece of EV truck history. Even if not interested in later resale, strong residual values protect your initial investment.

Take Your Pick of Color and Customization Combos

Part of what’s made the Ford F-Series America’s bestselling vehicle for decades owes to owners personalizing trucks to their unique tastes. The Lightning pushes boundaries here as well by incorporating new sustainable material mixes into interiors plus offering the widest selection of colors yet across the lineup.

Whether matching your farm’s signature John Deere green, sporting sleek matte black, or wrapping the whole rig to mimic beloved hot rods of the past, the canvas for custom creations here impresses. Genuine aluminum interior accents pair with available leather seating and carbonized gray wood paneling lending a premium aura as well.

Exterior accessories like spray-in bedliners, fender flares, lift kits and off-roading enhancements carry forward too. When you order, designing the Lightning that best represents your personality and passions makes the wait until delivery all the more exciting.

Final Word and Next Steps Securing Your Lightning

By now I hope you’ve sensed my genuine enthusiasm for the Lightning’s potential to convert many more truck owners over to EVs. Over 200,000 hand raisers sight unseen validate Ford engineered a segment shifter rather than compliance vehicle. Early reviews praise its daily drivability, work capability via max towing over 10,000 pounds and innovative strengths inside and out.

As production accelerates into 2023, you still have a window to get orders in for the fully-loaded configuration you want rather than later compromising on dealer inventory. Given demand projections, I advise placing your reservation sooner than later. Feel free to reach out with any other questions before moving forward!

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