- The Ford F-150 Lightning will be followed by a new electric pickup truck that will start production in 2025.
- Codenamed Project T3, Ford says the second-generation truck will and benefit from simplified manufacturing.
- The follow-up to the Lightning will be built at Ford's huge Blue Oval City factory in Tennessee.
Ford CEO Jim Farley said the company's next electric pickup truck is going to be “like the Millennium Falcon”—whatever that means.
Farley's comments come with today's announcement that Ford plans to follow-up the F-150 Lightning with a new EV truck that will go into production in 2025. While details about the second generation are scarce, we're told it is codenamed Project T3 (as in Trust the Truck).
Besides improving on the current Lightning's driving range and towing capabilities, Ford says the next-gen truck will be "fully updatable" and "constantly improving." These types of features are expected to be made possible by a new electrical platform and the expanded availability of over-the-air (OTA) updates.
Ford's second electric pickup truck will be built at its Blue Oval City factory, a $5.6 billion, 3600-acre campus outside Memphis, Tennessee. The new state-of-the-art campus also includes a battery plant as part of a partnership with energy company SK Innovation. Not only are the benefits of all of this said to include simpler, more efficient, and more cost-effective manufacturing processes, but they're claimed to allow Ford to build up to 500,000 EV trucks per year at peak production.
Today's announcement about the F-150 Lighting follow-up come on the heels of Ford forecasting a loss of $3 billion on EV sales in 2023. The increased losses are partly due to the company's big investments in its facilities in Kentucky and Tennessee along with the money its spending on alternate battery chemistries. Of course, Ford understands this is part of the process of expanding its EV division, and it will continue to ramp up production of the Lightning and the Mustang Mach-E.
Earlier this month, Ford said it hopes to build 150,000 Lightnings annually by the end of this year. That would triple the truck's production. The Mach-E will also be built in higher volumes, with the company in January saying production will increase nearly 67 percent, from 78,000 units last year to 130k in 2023.
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Eric Stafford’s automobile addiction began before he could walk, and it has fueled his passion to write news, reviews, and more for Car and Driver since 2016. His aspiration growing up was to become a millionaire with a Jay Leno–like car collection. Apparently, getting rich is harder than social-media influencers make it seem, so he avoided financial success entirely to become an automotive journalist and drive new cars for a living. After earning a degree at Central Michigan University and working at a daily newspaper, the years of basically burning money on failed project cars and lemon-flavored jalopies finally paid off when Car and Driver hired him. His garage currently includes a 2010 Acura RDX, a manual '97 Chevy Camaro Z/28, and a '90 Honda CRX Si.