“Who the f*** is buying that?” Ford’s $$$$ electric ute slammed

Jarrod
By Jarrod
3 Min Read

Ford’s latest entry in the EV ute race, the F-150 Lightning, has sparked backlash from sceptical tradies over its mind-boggling sticker price.

Resembling the company’s iconic Ranger design, the Lightning is hoping to bring Aussie tradies up to speed with the county’s adoption of electric vehicles (EV) after being put up for sale late last week.

Launched to widespread acclaim in the US in 2022, this new model has been converted to right-hand drive by Australian Manufacturing Queensland and boasts a number of improved features over other EV alternatives, including a powerful motor, rapid acceleration, and increased towing capacity.

However, the climate-conscious ute commands a hefty price tag, with a “standard range” 400-kilometre range model going for $224,990 plus on-road costs and an “extended range” version for $254,990 plus on-roads.

Once optional extras and on-road costs are factored in, the drive-away price edges close to the eye-watering $280,000 mark – the cost of almost four top-of-the-line Toyota Hilux’s. 

Tradie were quick to call out the eye-watering cost. Talking with 9 News reporter Abbey Geran, one remarked that he could “think of a lot of better things to spend $280,000 on”.

“That’s a bit spicy. That’s ahh ridiculous,” remarked another.

A high price to pay for progress 

Reddit users have also taken aim at the Lightning’s price, with many users saying the sky-high cost is pricing out the very workers that need them most. 

“Who the f — is buying that?” wrote one user.

Despite incoming wage hikes courtesy of union pay deals, the average tradie still only brings home $73,118 per year, or $37.50 per hour, with the most experienced workers making up to $101,588 per year.

But AusEV, the company responsible for the ute’s emergence on Aussie shores, suggests that customers look past the sticker shock to appreciate the potential savings offered by considerably lowered running costs.

With a cost of $2 per 100 kilometres to run, significantly less than the $27 offered by the petrol F-150 models, and five years of free servicing, the Lightning could potentially save customers up to $32,500 over five years.

The Lightning also boasts impressive specs that put it on par with its petrol-powered cousin, with the Australian model able to accelerate to an impressive 100km/h in about four seconds, tow 4.5 tonnes and carry up to one tonne in the tray.

But even with these savings and Ford’s initial success with over 200,000 orders in its first year of production, sales have continued to decline leading up to its Australian debut. 

Last year, the company sold just 24,165 Lightning’s out of more than 700,000 total F-150 sales, leading to a significant loss in its electric vehicle business.

Ford has since wound down the model’s production in America and told investors that they had lost $US4.7 billion ($7.3 billion) on its electric vehicle business, despite the fact that the Lightning was the number one selling electric ute in the country.

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Jarrod
By Jarrod
Jarrod Brown combines his background in journalism, copywriting and digital marketing with a lifelong passion for storytelling. He has a strong passion for new and emerging consumer technology within the building sector. He lives on the Sunshine Coast - usually found glued to the deck of a surfboard.