First Ford F-150 Lightning lands in Europe

Ford has handed over the first F-150 Lightning outside of the US. The electric version of the best-selling pickup truck has arrived in Norway and will be sold in a limited run. Meanwhile, demand has slowed down in the US after the first rush by early adopters.

In April last year, Ford announced it would bring a limited run of the electric F-150 Lightning pickup truck to Europe. More specifically, Norway’s challenging climate and the country’s love for electric vehicles make for the best possible use case for the American-built truck. The first example has been handed over to a Norwegian-American couple with Texan roots.

The limited run of the Lightning for Norway was based on customer applications, with only the Lariat version in Antimatter Blue Metallic available. Based on the interest in Norway, Ford also brought the truck to Switzerland. However, European prices are much higher than in the US, with a Swiss starting price of 127,000 francs (€134,000) compared to $79,495 (€73,800) for the Lariat model in its home market.

US production slowed down

Meanwhile, demand for electric pickups has slowed down in the United States. Ford announced it would reduce production of the Lightning to just one shift at its Michigan Rouge Electric Vehicle Center, starting in April, to adjust to a slower uptake expected in 2024. The extra workforce will be used for a third shift for the combustion-powered Bronco.

The lack of interest seems to be related to the fact that early adopters, who rushed the early sales of the models and forced Ford to scale up rapidly, have now received their vehicles. At the same time, the interested share of the general population is much lower.

What is the difficult stage in the transition to electric?

The transition toward electrification has also reached a new, more complex phase as the infrastructure struggles to keep up with the market growth. A lack of charging infrastructure, expensive public charging points, and high purchase prices mean the average customer is still reluctant to trade their ICE vehicle for an EV.

Voices of disappointed first-time EV owners are also being heard, and many are returning to gasoline, diesel, or plug-in hybrid vehicles as they wait for the market to catch up.

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