We already know that Ford is working on the all-electric Ford F-150 pickup truck, but it seems like they have some extra tech innovations up their sleeves. For example, Ford just patented an EV pickup truck range extender.
The Ford EV truck range extender
As emission standards continue to climb, most automakers are working to create hybrid and electric models that meet the requirements. However, while Ford develops the F-150 EV, they have also been figuring out solutions to problems that prevent consumer interest in electric vehicles.
Ford realizes that F-Series buyers are used to powerful gasoline and diesel engine options with plenty of places to get the fuel required to power these trucks. They are also aware of the range anxiety and challenges that come with the electric Ford F-150.
That’s why Ford is creating a range-extending unit that can be fitted into the cargo bed of an electric pickup truck bed. The range extender will resemble a cargo box and can be used to provide extra range with each charge. Basically, it serves as a backup battery.
According to MotorTrend, electric range extenders can be thought of as generators, similar to what you might use if the power goes out in your home. The range extender can be used to recharge EV batteries or to directly power the vehicle until you can find a charging cord.
This also serves as a solution to providing an additional driving range for electric vehicles without investing in huge, expensive battery packs. BMW offers a range extender in the i3 hatchback that helps it go further than its electric-only driving range to reach a gas pump or charging station in time to recharge.
What is the Ford F-150 EV range extender like?
Based on the Ford patent, the electric pickup ranger extender would be powered by gas from the engine. All of the generator-related components, from the engine to the fuel to the vehicle power system hookup, will be contained in a box-like unit that can be removed.
Meaning the modular design would allow the unit to be transferred between different electric Ford pickup truck models. This could help a commercial fleet owner with multiple Ford F-150 EV trucks to transfer extra driving range between trucks as needed.
However, Ford doesn’t specifically mention the F-150 EV or any other production of future electric vehicles that the ranger extender could be paired with in the patent notes. However, the patent does note that it could be used in a conceptually similar form in non-pickup trucks. It could fit in the back of an SUV or trunk of a car.
What’s new for the Ford F-150 EV?
The 2023 Ford F-150 EV is expected to go on sale in mid-2022. It’s expected to have more horsepower and torque with the fastest acceleration out of any Ford F-150 that’s currently available. This means that it could tow over 14,000 lb, which is what the 2021 Ford F-150 can tow with the 3.6-liter twin-turbocharged EcoBoost engine.
The Ford F-150 EV will have a frunk, which is a giant front trunk in the front with dual electric motors. It will be cheaper to operate over its lifetime than any other F-Series truck and should save over 40% over the maintenance costs for a gasoline-powered pickup truck.