Ford has started series production of the electric F-150 Lightning pickup – a milestone moment in America’s shift to electric vehicles, the company claims.
The Lightning is being built at the Rouge Electric Vehicle Center within Ford’s historic Rouge Complex.
“Today we celebrate the Model T moment for the 21st Century at the Rouge Electric Vehicle Center,” said Ford Executive Chair Bill Ford. “The Rouge is where Ford perfected the moving assembly line, making it a fitting backdrop as we make history again. The stunning anticipation for F-150 Lightning is a credit to the work of our Ford engineers and designers, and the UAW team members who are building these trucks with pride.”
Ford says it has unprecedented demand for F-150 Lightning with 200,000 reservations and is expanding the Rouge Electric Vehicle Center to ramp up production to a planned annual run rate of 150,000 in 2023. The company has invested a total of $950 million and created 750 jobs at the Rouge Electric Vehicle Center. Ford’s investment in Michigan for F-150 Lightning alone now totals more than $1 billion, with 1,700 recently created jobs spread among five Ford plants in the state, including Van Dyke Electric Powertrain Center, where Lightning electric motors and electric transaxles are assembled, and Rawsonville Components Plant, where Lightning batteries are assembled.
“America’s real transition to electric vehicles starts now,” said Ford President and CEO Jim Farley. “F-150 Lightning is just the beginning of our ambitions for growth and leadership in digital, electric vehicles. We continue to expand our EV manufacturing footprint across the U.S., including the start of site preparation at BlueOval City, which will enable us to meet the ever increasing customer demand for our exciting EV line-up.”
Ford says it is on track to deliver more than 2 million electric vehicles annually by 2026, equal to about one-third of the company’s global volume, on the way to 50% by 2030.
Lightning will stay up to date and constantly improve through over-the-air software updates, called ‘Ford Power-Ups’.