It may not be much of a category at the moment, but the electric pickup truck segment is about to become a fierce new battleground in the American automotive marketplace. Ford plans to be among the first to strike with its electric F-150 — and, much as with the Mustang Mach-E, the brand is more than willing to reappropriate one of its iconic nameplates for electric vehicle use if it means getting people to pay attention: the all-new Ford F-150 EV, as it turns out, will be called the new F-150 Lightning.
If you'll excuse the pun, the news isn't exactly a shock. Rumors that Ford planned to dust off the Lightning name for the new F-150 EV began flying in earnest last week, after Car and Driver reported coming across an internal Ford Motor Company document that revealed the name change. Ford's formal confirmation does come with the addition of the reveal of the new truck's logo, as seen above, which boasts subtle blue accents and a "T" with a stem that resembles a lightning bolt (or, perhaps more accurately, the ⚡ emoji).
In case you're unfamiliar, the F-150 Lightning name has been used in the past for two generations of performance-oriented street trucks — the first arriving in 1992, the second in 1999. Both those vehicles were short-wheelbase, single-cab trucks packing the most powerful V8 engines Ford could summon — a 240-horsepower 5.8-liter eight-pot for the first F-150 Lightning, and a 360-hp supercharged 5.4-liter engine for the second.
The new Lightning, of course, will do without any cylinders under its hood; that area will be used for cargo storage (and, like the Mach-E, probably make a decent cooler). Still, it should hold up the classic Lightning reputation for speed. Ford has already told us the new EV F-150 will be the quickest, most powerful member of the F-150 family, thanks to a pair of electric motors; that means it should at the very least outclass the F-150 Raptor's 450 horses and the F-150 Hybrid's 570 lb-ft of torque.
We won't have to wait long to find out more. Ford plans to unveil the new F-150 Lightning via livestream on May 19th at 9:30pm East Coast time, showcasing it not just on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, but even broadcasting it straight to Times Square. Expect to see it on the streets next year.