The Ford F-150 Lightning, the pioneering electric pickup truck, has faced some challenges since its debut. Now, a new test result adds another wrinkle to its story: the Lightning’s underwhelming performance in AMCI Testing’s MP6® fast-charging evaluation.
The MP6® test measures miles added to a vehicle’s range within six minutes at a Tesla Supercharger station, simulating the average gas station fueling time. While not the absolute measure of charging speed, it’s a valuable indicator for drivers who rely on public charging infrastructure.
Disappointing Numbers for the Lightning
The F-150 Lightning landed fifth on the MP6® leaderboard with a score of 22.0, falling behind competitors like the Toyota bZ4X (35.0 MP6) and the Ford Mustang Mach-E (32.5 MP6). Even the Rivian R1S, often criticized for its charging speed, managed a slightly better 20.5 MP6.
This result raises concerns for the Lightning, especially considering its target market. Pickups are often used for work and travel, where fast charging can be crucial for meeting deadlines or covering long distances. As AMCI Testing director Guy Mangiamele points out, “adding the maximum number of miles in the shortest possible time is mission critical” for such vehicles.
Implications for the Future
The MP6® test result adds to the narrative of a rushed development process for the F-150 Lightning. Some industry analysts believe Ford prioritized bringing the truck to market quickly to capitalize on the early EV adopter wave, potentially compromising features like charging speed.
However, David Stokols, CEO of AMCI Testing’s parent company, AMCI Global, expresses optimism for the future: “We would expect the clean sheet, next generation F-150 Lightning to be a major step forward from the current generation, and it cannot come too soon.”
The MP6® test is just one piece of the puzzle, and the F-150 Lightning still offers many advantages, including its spacious cabin, impressive towing capacity, and growing network of charging stations. However, this latest result highlights the importance of fast-charging technology for the future of electric vehicles, especially in the critical pickup truck segment.
As more automakers release their electric trucks, the competition will only intensify. It remains to be seen if the Lightning can regain its early lead or if its rivals will charge ahead in the race for EV dominance.