Ford launched the F-150 Lighting electric pickup truck earlier this year to great fanfare. The F-150 line is a best-seller and a hugely important nameplate for the company. Getting the electric model right was key, and with anticipation high, it seems Ford achieved that. Now, it seems eager future owners will be able to place orders shortly, with documents sent to dealers indicating that the books will open in January, as posted to the Lightning Owners forum.
Orders will officially open in January 2022, with production of the 2022 Lighting starting in the spring. Demand for the electric pickup has far exceeded Ford's estimates, meaning that sadly, not all reservation holders will be invited to place an order for 2022 model year production.
Reservation holders will be contacted in waves, giving them the opportunity to place an order. If their desired configuration is not available for 2022 production, they may defer for a year, change their order to a different model, or receive a full refund for their reservation.
Subsequent waves of customers will be contacted on roughly two-week intervals, based on dealer allocations and reservation timing. This will go on until the 2022 production quotas are fulfilled. Dealers will also have access to a limited number of priority slots to increase the chances of their most loyal customers getting into an F-150 Lightning next year. Fleet orders can also be placed, but Ford has highlighted to its dealer network that high demand means not all orders will be produced for the 2022 model year.
The sheer level of interest has surprised even Ford. Earlier this year, the company committed to investing $250 million in expanding its production line to handle 80,000 Lightning trucks a year. Since then, the company has now stated it has almost 200,000 reservations for the Lightning, and doubled its targets again, aiming to expand production to 160,000 units annually by 2024.
It's unclear which exact configurations will be available from the get go. Ford's documents indicate that limited production is available of some variants, stating that online configurators "will be updated to provide directional ETA’s of vehicle delivery timing based on the availability of each configuration."
Similarly, estimated production numbers for 2022 are not known. Plans in August aimed to build 15,000 electric trucks next year, however these numbers may have shifted upwards in the face of unprecedented demand.
The good news for fans of Ford's electric truck is that orders are opening soon; the harder part is that many reservation holders will be kept waiting for some time. This could lead to huge prices on the second-hand market as we've seen with the Bronco, another vehicle that Ford just can't get out the door fast enough. Regardless, short of limited production capacity, it seems the launch of the F-150 Lightning is going even better than Ford could have expected.
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