Now that battery electric vehicles (BEVs) are well-established in both car and crossover segments, North America’s profitable pickup truck market is the next target for zero-emissions EV technology.
The Ford F-150 Lightning is leading the charge, set to reach showrooms by summer 2022 and giving Ford a roughly 18-month jump on electric versions of its Chevrolet Silverado and Ram 1500 rivals. Meanwhile, Tesla says it will begin building its radical Cybertruck in 2022.
Nissan is reported to be working on a battery-powered version of its Titan, but there’s no indication of when it might go on sale.
Otherwise, the electric pickup concept is the domain of the automotive start-up, as you’ll see in this overview of the battery-powered models that are likely to hit the road by the end of 2022. If things go well for some of the industry’s other ambitious newcomers, the Fisker Alaska, Alpha Wolf, and Canoo electric pickups will also eventually be competing for buyers of plug-in trucks.
2022 Ford F-150 Lightning
Ford will be the first mainstream automaker into the electric pickup segment in the first half of 2022 with its $68,000 (starting price) F-150 Lightning. Two motors will generate as much as 775 lb-ft of torque and contribute to a 10,000-pound (4,536 kg) towing capacity. Maximum driving range will be more than 480 km with the Lightning’s largest available battery, and Level 3 fast charging will add 86 km of range in 10 minutes. The Lightning gets an independent rear suspension in place of the standard F-150’s solid axle, and a 400L front trunk where a gas engine normally lives. In August, Ford doubled the Lightning’s production target to more than 80,000 by 2024 in response to strong demand.
Tesla unveiled its futuristic Cybertruck nearly two years ago, and says production will begin in 2022. Under the Cybertruck’s wedgy shape, there will be more than 2,800L of cargo space in the covered bed and front trunk, and Tesla says the Cybertruck will be rated for payloads up to 1,588 kg (3,500 lbs) and a maximum towing capacity of 6,350 kg (14,000 lbs). When it’s not loaded up, the Tesla Cybertruck’s top tri-motor powertrain will promise more than 800 km of driving range and sub-three-second 0-60 mph acceleration. Tesla says the truck’s stainless steel body will resist dents and corrosion and provide robust crash protection.
GMC Hummer EV
In fall 2022, the GMC Hummer EV will debut as an all-electric pickup truck with impressive off-road performance. An air suspension will provide more than 400 mm (nearly 16 inches) of ground clearance, and four-wheel steering will turn all four wheels in the same direction so the truck can perform a diagonal “crabwalk” maneuver. Using GM’s new Ultium battery technology, plugging into a fast charger will add 160 km of range in 10 minutes, and GMC says the Hummer EV’s maximum range will be more than 560 km. GMC also claims those batteries will lend the Hummer EV 1,000 hp and a whopping 11,500 lb-ft of torque.
Already, the first Rivian R1T has rolled off the line and has been delivered to a customer in September. Depending on how you option an R1T, you get between 400 and 600 km of driving range, and standard 4WD thanks to individual motors at each wheel. Like many electric pickup makers, Rivian is keen to point out the truck’s speedy acceleration – 0-60 mph in three seconds – but the more important number is the R1T’s nearly 5,000-kg (11,000 lb) towing capacity. Rivian’s cool cargo trick is a 340L space spanning the width of the body ahead of the rear wheels, and an extra $5,000 will get you a slide-out camp kitchen set to fit there.
Under the Bollinger B2’s boxy body is a 142-kWh battery its maker says will provide 320 km of driving range, 614 hp, and 668 lb-ft of torque. Inside, an austere cabin belies the B2’s high-tech nature with features like manual crank windows. Bollinger says the B2’s payload rating will be 2,267 kg (5,000 lb), and it will tow up to 3,400 kg (7,500 lbs). Portals in the firewall and behind the rear seats create a flat load floor that runs the length of the truck. Bollinger says it will start building the B2 in late 2021.
Atlis says its US$45,000 electric pickup will “revolutionize” the truck market in 2022 by letting you order the XT with only the features you want, instead of bundling them into packages. The company promises ultra-fast charging in less than 15 minutes, and driving range options of 480, 645 and 800 km. A fifth-wheel towing setup will handle 16,000 kg (35,000 lb), and maximum payload will be 2,250 kg (5,000 lb). Motors at each wheel will power the Atlis XT to 96 km/h (60 mph) in 5 seconds when empty, or 18 seconds when loaded to capacity. You’ll also be able to choose single- and dual-rear-wheel configurations.
Detroit-based EV startup Hercules says it will start selling its Alpha battery-powered pickup truck in late 2022. The company doesn’t offer any driving range projections or battery specs, but says the top powertrain configuration will boast 1,000 hp and 800 lb-ft of torque along with four-wheel torque vectoring. A standard solar tonneau cover will help charge the battery, and an 8 kWh inverter can power a campsite or household appliances and electronics. Some reports suggest Hercules is teaming up with Nissan for this project, and that the Japanese company will eventually launch its own electric truck based on the Titan.
Lordstown Motors says it’s on track to begin production of its Endurance electric pickup this fall, despite a U.S. Justice Department investigation into allegations the company inflated the truck’s pre-order numbers to attract more investors. If Lordstown does manage to bring the Endurance to market, it promises more than 400 km of driving range, 600 hp from four in-wheel motors that will also function as brakes, and a 3,400-kg (7,500 lb) towing capacity. Lordstown also claims the Endurance will have the fewest moving parts of any motor vehicle.