Ford’s New F-150 Lightning Represents Step Forward in Evolution of Electric Vehicles, Analyst Says

With automakers setting aggressive goals for introducing new products, Karl Brauer of ISeeCars says competition between the likes of Ford and General Motors is driving the increasing viability of electric vehicles.

For a long time, automotive analysts have pointed to high selling prices and concerns over battery range as limiting factors in electric vehicle sales. However as Detroit’s car companies heavily invest in electrified models, the option is becoming more feasible compared to their gasoline counterparts.

Ford’s recently unveiled, all-electric F-150 Lightning pickup will carry a $40,000 base price. That’s compared to the current $29,000 starting point for F-150s with internal combustion engines.

“[General Motors is] going to need to have a Silverado that lives up to everything now that Ford has offered.” –Karl Brauer, ISeeCars

Karl Brauer is an executive automotive analyst with ISeeCars. He says the truck represents a step forward in the evolution of electric vehicles.

“They didn’t just make it oriented toward truck buyers,” says Brauer, “but toward people who can afford real trucks and use them in real ways.”

Ford says the entry-level F-150 Lightning will have a battery range of about 230 miles. However some more expensive variants of the truck will be able to get around 300 miles on a charge.

While General Motors is yet to unveil its all-electric version of the Chevrolet Silverado pickup, the automaker has promised a 400-mile range. Brauer says the announcement from Ford puts the ball in General Motors’ court.

“They are going to need to have a Silverado,” says Brauer, “that lives up to everything now that Ford has offered. If it falls short in really any way substantially, it will be called out immediately by everybody.”

The Silverado and F-150 are typically direct competitors when it comes to new vehicle sales. General Motors is yet to announce a price point for its upcoming electric truck.

Listen: Karl Brauer talks about making electric cars more accessible.

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  • Alex McLenon
    Alex McLenon is a Reporter with 101.9 WDET. McLenon is a graduate of Wayne State University, where he studied Media Arts & Production and Broadcast Journalism.