2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Is Even Quicker Than Expected

  • We’ve just tested a 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning, a top Platinum trim with a $93,609 sticker price.
  • It’s far and away quicker than any other F-150, running neck and neck with a Mustang Mach 1 through the quarter-mile.
  • It’s also far quieter than other F-150s and more than 300 pounds lighter than a Rivian R1T, but the brakes faded significantly during our testing.

    It’s hard to imagine anyone not being blown away by the heroic shove of the 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning’s two electric motors making a combined 580 horsepower and 775 pound-feet of torque. Nail the throttle from rest and 60 mph arrives in 4.0 seconds flat, on its way to a 12.7-second quarter-mile at 107 mph, just before it hits its 110-mph governed top speed.

    Our test vehicle was a top-trim Platinum that included the larger, 131.0-kWh battery pack, and, with a couple of minor options, wore a sticker price of $93,609. The performance of this first electric F-150 positively dominates any other in Ford’s truck lineup, including the Raptor, by more than a second in either metric. Even a Mach-E GT is no quicker in the quarter-mile. And a Mustang Mach 1 would have to be exceptionally well driven to open up the narrowest of gaps in the quarter. The Rivian R1T is substantially quicker—nearly a second in the quarter-mile—and is still the quickest pickup we’ve ever tested. But, surprisingly, in our 30-50-mph and 50-70-mph passing tests, the Lightning essentially ties the Rivian (0.1 second quicker in the former, and 0.1 second slower in the latter). Where the R1T’s 908 pound-feet of torque is ramped in smoothly, the Lightning’s 775 pound-feet hits hard when smacking the accelerator, to the point that it chirps the front tires at speeds up to 30 mph or so, which tends to generate spontaneously giggles from the power-drunk pilot standing on the pedal.

    Michael SimariCar and Driver

    Braking was a different story, with the Lightning’s stoppers fading significantly during our six-stop routine from 70 mph. Although it delivered a solid 180-foot stop (we report the second-best number of the six), after the third one a warning light came on to indicate the brakes were overheating, along with significant fade and smoke, to the point that the truck couldn’t keep ABS engaged on the later stops. Although our test may seem extreme, it gives us pause about using the upper reaches of the Lightning’s maximum 10,000-pound towing capacity (8500 pounds max for Platinum trims like ours). Many other pickups handle the abuse without complaint, including the heavier Rivian.

    That’s right: at 6855 pounds, our top-trim Lightning Platinum, 1500-pound battery pack and all, weighed more than 300 pounds less than the smaller R1T. That’s also within 100 pounds of a Ram 1500 TRX. Until now, we never thought we’d be impressed by the mass of anything this heavy. But, in light of the Hummer EV’s 9000-pound curb weight, the Lightning is practically a Miata. (That might be overstating it, but the Lightning is nearly a Miata lighter than the Hummer).

    In addition to being the quickest F-150, the Lightning is also the quietest. We measured a mere 65 decibels at a steady 70-mph cruise. That’s solidly quieter than both the R1T and any other F-150. Although some may think all EVs are similarly silent, wind and road noise are still significant factors at highway speeds, and the hulking lighting pulls off the impressive feat of being quieter than any Tesla we’ve ever tested.

    Maximum cornering certainly isn’t the Lightning’s forte, but it put up a decent 0.77 g on the skidpad, which is in the ballpark with other full-size trucks.

    Get it pointed in a straight line, though, and prepare to be wowed.

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