Electric cars are a booming market, but the next phase of the revolution is coming. Electric trucks promise to make fuel-inefficient and polluting vehicles greener than ever. Many traditional automakers are just starting to explore the concept. But Ford has already flexed its muscles in the race for the best electric truck with the all-electric Ford F-150.
This promotional video shows Ford’s prototype electric F-150 towing over one million pounds of cargo. Although the truck’s details are scarce in this video, Ford does report that this was just a test and they don’t recommend future owners to try to tow that much weight. Regardless, this demo showcases the bright future of electric trucks.
In comparison with the all-electric Ford F-150’s towing abilities, the highest towing capacity of the 2019 F-150 is a mere 13,200 pounds. Match the all-electric Ford F-150 with every other commercial truck on the market, the electric F-150 still wins. One of the vehicles with the highest towing capacity available right now is the F-450 Super Duty. It can tow over 30,000 pounds. That’s about 33 times less than what the electric F-150 towed in this video.
The reason this electric F-150 can tow more than a traditional truck can: an electric motor. Simply put, torque matters more than horsepower for towing. And electric motors can achieve their maximum torque far faster than a regular car. This allows electric cars to generally have great towing capacities.
For example, Tesla claims their Model X SUV can tow 5,000 lb — something few SUVs can boast. With experienced truckmakers like Ford, it’s no surprise their prototype F-150 can tow over one million pounds.
The future of trucking
Ford has yet to reveal this electric F-150 ‘s specs entirely, but the video shows that electric trucks will make a splash in the near future. The electric vehicle startup Rivian will debut their electric R1T truck in 2020. Tesla CEO Elon Musk also recently teased a Tesla electric truck. (The details are even more scarce than the specs for the electric F-150.)
This electric F-150 likely won’t be available for a while, so Rivian’s R1T will be the first mass-produced electric truck. The R1T will have impressive features, like a range of about 400 miles and the ability to accelerate from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 3.0 seconds. Ford’s electric F-150 will need similar specs and features in order to compete.
In the transportation sector, regular cars like sedans and SUVs are the largest polluter at about 59%, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. But trucks come in second with 23% of the total emissions. By creating electric trucks, Ford, Rivian, and other companies will expand the electric vehicle market to new parts of the world.
The success of electric trucks remains to be seen. But Ford is certainly confident with its demonstration video. The company also put its money where its mouth is. Ford invested over $500 million in Rivian earlier this year. But if the R1T and electric F-150 are as powerful and reliable as other trucks, it will be a great sign for the future.