This is why Ford is doubling its EV projection to 600,000 units per year globally by the end of 2023, but actually should triple it - "but we can't." As we understand, due to the battery availability bottleneck.
"Demand is two to three times what we expected. And so that capacity had to be doubled — probably tripled if we could, but we can't. Lightning, when we first got together we talked about volumes of 20,000 units a year. And I was like, no. So we capacitized something far north of 20,000, but it's nowhere near the 160,000 units of demand we have today. Our reservations are approaching 200,000 units now and we're moving those reservations to actual orders."
The manufacturer expects that more than 80% of Lightning reservations will turn into orders as it's very competitive and brings new features, like Pro Power Onboard to provide electricity for a house if needed.
"I think it's going to be north of 80 percent, but we don't know. The issue is that since we launched Lightning, full-size trucks have gotten a lot more expensive. So that price that we launched at is looking more and more attractive, so when people look at moving from a reservation to an order, I think it's going to be extremely high — north of Bronco's. "
Blue Oval City - next-generation full-size pickup platform
The current Ford F-150 Lightning is closely related to the F-150 pickup. It has batteries within the frame area and drive units in the axle area, with some substantial modifications (new rear suspension, for example).
It appears to us that the future electric pickup from Ford will be much more different than conventional ones, as by the way of the Blue Oval City "mega-sites" in Tennessee (vehicle and battery production at one site), Ford will introduce also an all-new full-size pickup platform.
It's still quite some time away, as the base timeline is 2025 - so three to four years from now - but according to Jim Farley, the next-generation electric F-Series pickups will sell in "incredibly high volume:"
"We've announced this new plant; it's going to be a huge site, and it's going to build a vehicle we do not have today off a brand-new platform — a full-size pickup platform. We think it's going to be incredibly high volume. What I know for sure that we have to build more of? Battery plants."
Well, assuming 43 GWh of battery cell production, and 200 kWh battery per pack, it would be 215,000 units annually. Maybe more - 250,000-300,000, if the battery pack is smaller.
Little is known about the new platform now.
Blue Oval City in brief:
- Stanton, west Tennessee
- investment: $5.6 billion
- a 3,600-acre campus covering nearly 6 square miles
- 6,000 jobs
- Production (from 2025):
next-generation electric F-Series pickups
BlueOvalSK advanced batteries (43 GWh annaully)