Category: Electric Car

5 Things to Know about the Ford F-150 Lightning – Jay Ramey @Autoweek

5 Things to Know about the Ford F-150 Lightning – Jay Ramey @Autoweek


Ford’s electric F-150 brings lightning-quick launches and plenty of juice for your tools.

The Ford F-150 Lightning, revealed on Thursday night (May 20), is easily one of the most-important launches for Ford in this entire decade, and also one of the most important EV launches for any automaker. Making its global debut just months after the start of sales of the Mustang Mach-E, the 2022 F-150 Lightning wants to turn the Blue Oval’s best seller into the best-selling EV truck in America, and as we saw last night all the ingredients are there.

1 The Goals

The F-150 Lightning is not meant to be an electric truck that happens to be useful in daily life, but to be a daily working truck that just happens to be electric. The F-150 Lightning is also meant to win over longtime Ford truck buyers with its versatility and impressive bag of tricks, even if they wouldn’t have otherwise thought about buying an EV, as well as those who’ve been waiting for a large and affordable electric SUV with the added versatility of a truck.

“We’re not here to make an electric truck for the few—Ford is committed to building one that solves real problems for real people,” said Kumar Galhotra, Ford president, Americas and International Markets Group. “F-150 Lightning delivers everything we’ve said electric vehicles can offer, plus the capability expected from a Built Ford Tough truck—not just near instant torque but powerful towing and hauling customers can depend on.”

2 The Performance

Equipped with the standard-range battery, the F-150 Lightning produces 426 hp and 725 lb-ft of torque. Upgrade to the long-range battery, and you’ll get the bonus of having 563 hp and 725 lb-ft of torque to play with.

When it comes to towing and payload, the F-150 Lightning will tow 10,000 lbs, and will carry 2,000 lbs of cargo.

Staying true to the last Ford truck to use the name Lightning, the electric F-150 will also be able to launch itself from 0 to 60 mph in the mid-four second range, which President Joe Biden briefly quoted as being 4.3 or 4.4 seconds. Those aren’t quite the final figures, but judging from Ford’s statements, they’re close.

“Whether they’re hauling a bed full of firewood through snow or towing a trailer on a road trip, customers need to be able to rely on their truck’s performance,” said Linda Zhang, chief engineer, F-150 Lightning. “This all-electric truck has been engineered with dual in-board motors, which means it can take on rough terrain. Our team of engineers has run the same arduous test regimen our F-150 customers have learned to expect from Ford

3 The Power

The Ford F-150 will make the most of its electric nature, offering four power outlets in the frunk alone, and seven others elsewhere including in the bed in the cabin, for a total of 11. Needless to say, this will make it a popular truck for work tools with the Pro Power Onboard system. This system will also keep track of juice when power tools are being used and will notify the owner when the range falls below a certain point.

Perhaps more impressive than the ability to power tools on a worksite is the ability of the truck to power an entire home in the case of a power outage. The Ford Intelligent Backup Power option can provide 9.6 kilowatts of power to a home through its 80-amp Ford Charge Station Pro, which Ford can help install in a home garage. The system can automatically kick in when a loss of power occurs in a home, and then cut off the flow when power is restored.

“Whether sheltering during a storm or trying to stay safe in a heat wave, customers can now use their truck to give themselves power when they need it most,” said Ryan O’Gorman, electric vehicle manager, Strategic Partnerships. “F-150 Lightning is built for seamless transitions between charging your vehicle and powering your house when needed—and Ford is the first in the U.S. to offer this capability on an electric truck.”

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Could an Obscure Fifties Fiberglass Roadster Have Been the First Electric Car Inspired by Nikola Tesla? – Daniel Strohl @Hemmings


The mid-Fifties weren’t much of a boom time for electric vehicles here in the United States. Gas was cheap, the chrome was thick, and conformity was high. Despite all the advancements in aerospace and pushbutton gizmos, the state of electric drivetrains at the time wasn’t that much more advanced than 25 years prior, when the first wave of electric vehicles sparked their last. Of the half-dozen or so American EVs that one can count from that time, one stood out partly for making the effort in the first place and partly for proposing a novel means of propulsion that has otherwise dwelt only in the realm of myth.

1955 Electronic. Press handout photo via Alden Jewell.

When the Electronic debuted in June 1955, it brought along with it a bevy of dubious claims. F.B. Malouf, president of the Salt Lake City-based Electronic Motor Car Corporation, boasted that it was a multimillion-dollar company with two manufacturing facilities already in operation (in Detroit and in Oxford, Michigan) and a third forthcoming in the Utah capital city with production expected to reach 400 cars per day within the year. The car itself Malouf described in terms bordering on technobabble: It had a “turbo-electric” drivetrain with a “dual-torque” electric motor capable of propelling it to 100 miles per hour. If the press release didn’t come with a photo, it would’ve been simple to write the Electronic off as a pipe dream

The press release did come with a photo, though, and from that photo it’s plain to see that the Electronic was merely a LaSaetta selling under a different name. As an August 1955 Motor Life article reported, the LaSaetta was the fiberglass sports car dream of two brothers, Cesare and Gino Testaguzza, who relocated from Italy to the Detroit area – specifically Oxford, Michigan – and worked for multiple carmakers before setting out to build their own car. Not a kit car, the LaSaetta was instead meant to be tailored to each customer’s specifications. Most had altered Ford chassis with Oldsmobile V-8 engines, though Motor Life reported on one that had a Hudson six-cylinder, and then there was the Electronic.

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Ford’s crate electric motor tease doesn’t mean much without a crate battery – Daniel Strohl @Hemmings


Even a year ago, when Chevrolet announced its eCrate motor via an electrified Blazer, we noted that the move was inevitable. More than at any other period in history, classic car owners have been electrifying their vehicles using whatever modern EV powertrains end up in junkyards and for cheap on the secondary market. Dozens of shops have popped up offering classic car electrification services. Now’s the time to make crate electric motors available, and as we saw in a tweet from Ford recently, the Blue Oval is soon going to announce its own crate electric motor – the Eluminator – at this year’s SEMA show.

Awesome, really, but this all makes zero sense if Ford and GM can’t also offer crate battery packages to go with those crate electric motors.

Yes, I know, batteries are not sexy. They don’t even having any moving parts, ferpetesake – they just lay there, all shocks and zaps if you touch ’em wrong. Automakers tend not to introduce new battery systems at SEMA – heck, sometimes automakers barely release any information about the batteries in their electric vehicles. Take, for instance, the electric Mustang Cobra Jet that’s up at the top of this article. When Ford announced it last year, the company boasted all sorts of stats on its performance (1,502 peak wheel horsepower, quarter-miles in 8.27 seconds at 168 mph), but nowhere in its press releases did the company mention the battery supplying all that power. (All we’ve been able to find with some quick googling from other sources is that it has three 60kWh battery packs of some sort.)

Motors, on the other hand, they at least spin. They’ve got some torque. Ford absolutely gushed about the electric Cobra Jet’s “four PN-250-DZR inverters coupled to a pair of DS-250-115s, giving four motors total and spinning at up to 10,000 revolutions per minute (and running) at 800 volts and up to 700 amps, with maximum output of 350kW per motor.” According to Carscoops, which spoke with Ford’s Hau Thai-Tang, the Eluminator should put out 210 kW. Roughly, in terms of SAT question format, the electric motor is to the internal-combustion engine as the battery pack is to the gas tank. Motors are relatively easy to bolt up top existing transmissions and to fit in places where internal combustion engines once went. Far, far more articles have been written about building and modifying engines than gas tanks.

On the other hand, that’s not a fair comparison. Batteries have far more to do with the performance of an electric vehicle than a gas tank has with the performance of an internal combustion vehicle. The major reason electric vehicles have even become a hot topic of conversation over the last decade or so is because advances in battery technology have made them feasible alternatives to internal-combustion vehicles for a wider variety of use cases. Without a good battery, that spinny spinny motor’s not good for much beyond windshield wiper duty.

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Chevy’s electric K5 Blazer is the beginning of the EV crate motor era – Mike Austin @Hemmings


It was only a matter of when, not if. Not even COVID-19 and the annual SEMA Show moving to a virtual event could delay the inevitable dawn of the electric crate motor. While the 1977 K5 Blazer-E is a one-off concept build, it previews some form of future package that GM Performance Parts will sell to convert any project vehicle to electric propulsion.

We saw this coming, of course, with the eCOPO Camaro in 2018 and the E-10 pickup from last year  (yes, everything needs an “e” in the name to signify electrification, sigh). While those offer some sort of wow factor, with 9-second quarter-mile times for the Camaro and around 450 horsepower in the pickup, the Blazer-E is a little more, well, everyday. It uses the electric motor from the Bolt EV, putting out 200 hp and 266 pound-feet of torque.

Before you bemoan this as some form of weak sauce, consider that the stock engine that Chevy yanked out of the Blazer made a mere 175 hp. More significant is that, while the Blazer-E is a concept, the parts will soon be real. Chevy has already moved to train dealers and shops to be certified installers for the “eCrate” system, starting with Lingenfelter Performance Engineering. And the modularity touted with the E-10 pickup remains; multiple motors and inverters can be stacked in series for more power and torque.

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Predictions about roads of the future were wrong – Larry Edsall

In 1958 Ford did a scale model of a nuclear-powered car for the future | Rivervale Leasing illustrations

Self-driving cars, hydrogen fuel and flying vehicles – big things are being planned for the motor industry, but how many of those predictions proved to be correct?

So, “ We investigated old car news and archives of motor magazines to find out what we once thought was possible. Check out our five visualized scenes below to see what our roads should look like, according to historic predictions:

“In 1957, it was predicted that our roads would become tubes! An engineer working for the American aerospace and technology company Honeywell imagined that we would have a ‘network of pneumatic tubes’ by 2000.

Nuclear power stations for refueling our cars

“In 1958, Ford produced a nuclear-powered concept car known as the Ford Nucleon. The futuristic scale model was designed to ‘explore how the future of energy might affect the future of automotive design.’

The reactors inside the cars were supposed to be replaced every 5,000 miles at recharging stations. Instead of filling up at the pump, your reactor would be swapped with a new one, with different options available if you have a high-torque or fuel-efficient model.

“When the Nucleon was revealed, the technology was still being researched and it was thought that nuclear power would be a practical energy source. However, obvious safety issues and technical problems meant that this car never went ahead.

“Research by Stanford Universityexplains that nuclear-powered cars could be possible one day, thanks to advancements in technology. However, it’s more likely that the atomic energy would be used ‘indirectly’ and not actually part of the vehicle.”

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General Motors’ EV1 was far ahead of its time Bill Vance @TimesColonist


General Motors knew the electric automotive age was coming when it showed its Impact electric concept car in 1990. It was another step in the history of trying to promote a successful electric car, a quest going back to the infancy of the automobile.

While electrics and steam did enjoy brief popularity early in the 20th century, gasoline soon took over. The electric’s short driving range limited it largely to urban driving, and range is still an electric’s limitation.

Read the rest of the article here

The History of Owen Magnetic – The Car of A Thousand Speeds –


Ray M. Owen

Before the days of the automatic gearbox, the petrol-electric transmission enjoyed a certain vogue, particularly as it was invented in the era of the non-synchromesh or ‘crash’ gearbox. However although the petrol-electric was easy to use, it was also expensive to build, bulky and heavy, which made it more suitable for commercial vehicles (such as the Tilling- Stevens) than for the private car.

There were one or two notable exceptions to this general rule, however, and one of the more ingenious electric transmissions was conceived just before World War 1 by Ray M. Owen of the Baker, Rauch & Lang company of Cleveland, Ohio, who were renowned for their Baker and Raulang battery electric cars.

The Entz Transmission

Owen adapted the Entz transmission, which was designed for use in the new generation of oil-engined battleships (such as the 1919 New Mexico), for automotive use, and began production of a luxury car with this form of drive in 1914. Under its original name of Owen Magnetic, the ‘Car of a Thousand Speeds’ was not very successful, but by 1920 J. L. Crown had taken over the design rights, and was producing cars in a factory at Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania.

Read the rest of this excellent article here


Fremont Police Replaced an Old Dodge Charger With a Tesla Cop Car- Andrew P Collins @Jalopnik


The police department in Fremont, Calif., the same Fremont where the Tesla factory is, just bought a used Tesla Model S 85 to replace a retiring Dodge Charger. The car has been fitted with all the standard cop-spec accessories and will soon go on duty as part of a pilot program to see if a Tesla is up to the task of police work

Read Andrews article at Jalopnik




All-Electric, Tesla-Powered 1949 Mercury Sleeper by Icon – Jacob Davis and @Rich Rebuilds on YouTube


There is something for everyone at SEMA each year, whether you like meticulously crafted show cars or lifted trucks on stretched tires. The wide variety of vehicles can make it hard to stand out from the crowd, but Icon has done just that with their 1949 Mercury build despite its unassuming exterior.

Read the rest of Jacob’s article here

The Tesla powered Mercury has also been featured on well known Tesla rebuilder YouTube channel  Rich Rebuilds.

This truly is a work of engineering art and perhaps a way to go for modding classic cars?

Even the interior is period with the retention of the switch gears appearance but still integrating the EV display into the dashboard