Truck and luxury EV markets expand
The ever-growing electric vehicle market is showing that EVs are here to stay. With continued improvements, they will be able to do much more than help commuters get to and from work without stopping at a gas station. The motors are becoming more powerful while batteries are delivering more range. And a new crate motor makes it possible to put electric engines in classic cars. The following article gives you a closer look at recent advancements that are affecting the EV market.
F-150 Lightning produces astonishing power
Ford is one of the most popular truck builders on the planet. Its best-selling F-150 pickup ranks among the most popular of all time. Ford recently released the all-electric F-150 Lightning, which might be its most powerful pickup yet built.
The full-size pickup has a very powerful motor that delivers the most torque of any F-150 ever produced. The all-electric Lightning delivers a very impressive 563 horsepower and 775 pound-feet of torque. When equipped with an extended-range battery, the F-150 Lightning can go from 0 to 60 mph in just 4.5 seconds.
With those kinds of numbers, all the truck needs is some good driving range to really make it a viable permanent replacement for its pickups powered by internal combustion engines. Ford mounted a pair of electric motors under the hood to provide such astonishing power numbers.
The F-150 Lightning has a 4×4 drivetrain, carries a ton in the bed, and can tow another 5 tons. Those numbers make it an ideal work truck when the work sites are within range. And with more charging stations going online all the time, that range could be extended greatly.
The FordPass connectivity system helps to alleviate any range issues by mapping charging stations. Other intelligent electronic features continually update themselves through cloud-based technology. The intelligent systems include intelligent towing to enable better and safer hauling.
Ford electric crate motor sold out fast
Ford made its Eluminator electric crate motor available for custom projects during the early November SEMA show in Las Vegas. The EV motor is designed to fit in place of internal combustion motors in older Fords. It also is a potential power plant for EV customs.
The Eluminator is based on the same motor that Ford puts in its new electrified Mustang Mach E. For the SEMA show, Ford pulled the stock motor out of a 1978 F-100 pickup and replaced it with the Eluminator EV crate motor. And for good measure, Ford added a second e-crate motor for its electric concept pickup.
The result is a very impressive restoration-modification that shows how the cool vehicles of the past can be made into outstanding EV pickups and classic cars. A stock Eluminator engine produces an impressive 281 horsepower and 317 pound-feet of torque. That is good power but will not pull large loads or turn the pickup into a straight-line demon.
Ford overcame the stock numbers by adding a second EV engine to its concept truck. With two Eluminator crate motors mounted under the hood, the F-100 EV concept truck produces 480 horsepower and an eye-popping 634 pound-feet of torque. Those kinds of numbers put it very close to supercar status.
The Eluminator motor is legal in all 50 states. Why would it not be? It is electric, so you do not have to worry about loud exhaust or any exhaust at all. And it does not guzzle gas, spew carbon monoxide, or even create carbon dioxide.
The initial run of engines already has sold out. Ford has not said how many units it made and sold. But with its initial allotment sold out in less than a week, you can bet more are coming. When they arrive, you’ll be able to order one online or through a Ford dealership.
Luxury market EV offers are growing
Developing a new technology can be very costly. Entirely new vehicles, motors and machining equipment are needed to make it all happen. Producing all of that takes time and a lot of money. But when successful, manufacturers can lower the prices while improving the product over time.
So it makes sense that many of the newer EV options are targeting the luxury car market. Luxury cars already cost a lot of money. If you target that market with new luxury EVs, then you stand a better chance of surviving over the long run. As costs go down over time, you can build and sell more affordable EVs intended for more basic consumer markets.
Meanwhile, many EV manufacturers are going forward with some of the most exciting luxury vehicles ever devised. And they are powered by electric motors or plug-in hybrids. From BMW to Tesla, the market for luxury EVs is expanding. The following are among the more exciting developments in the luxury EV market.
Initially intended to debut during the 2020 model year, Tesla is moving forward with its Roadster concept and anticipates its release in about a year. The Roadster is based on the same Lotus-inspired platform that led to the first Tesla model sold. A global pandemic temporarily interrupted the product’s development, but it is back on track.
Tesla says the all-new Roadster will have three engines sending power to all four drive wheels. Those motors will produce enough power for the Roadster to go from 0 to 60 mph in about 2 seconds. And it should have a very useful range that exceeds 600 miles per charge.
The interior will seat up to four passengers. A partly retractable hardtop makes it a convertible that still provides rigid structure overhead. Additional planned features include new batteries with extended range capabilities. A full self-driving program could improve upon current technology by actually making it safe to allow a vehicle to drive itself.
BMW i4 and iX
BMW is one of the oldest car manufacturers and among the most established luxury car builders. BMW is producing two new EVs targeting the luxury market in very different ways.
The BMW i4 resembles more traditional BMW sedans with sporty styling and seating for up to four passengers. Two versions will be available. The eDrive40 provides rear-wheel drive, up to 335 horsepower and an estimated 300 miles of range. The sportier M50 offers all-wheel-drive and up to 245 miles of range. It also can do 0 to 60 mph in about 4 seconds.
BMW also will offer the iX, which is to be its flagship electric SUV. It has four doors and a rear liftgate, and it looks like many current-model SUVs. But what goes inside really makes a difference.
The all-new iX will have two engines to deliver up to 500 horsepower to all four drive wheels. BMW says it can go from 0 to 60 mph in under 5 seconds and provides drivers with up to 300 miles of range per charge.
About 10 minutes of fast charging with a DC charger will provide about 75 more miles of range. A full charge will take about 11 hours. Consumer Reports says 11 hours is about average for the EV industry.
Another classic luxury builder, Cadillac, plans to make its Lyriq EV crossover SUV platform. Cadillac says the Lyriq is based on its traditional XT6 SUV but is lower and longer. It has a rear-wheel drive with up to 340 horsepower produced by a 100-kilowatt-hour battery. The battery should provide about 300 miles of range per charge.
Cadillac says it will start producing the Lyriq in 2022 at its factory in Spring Hill, Tennessee. It also is investing $2.3 billion to build a factory to produce batteries in Spring Hill. That should help to make the Lyriq more accessible and provide greater range as the batteries become better with greater range capabilities.
Mercedes EQB and EQE Offerings
Mercedes-Benz is keeping pace with the world’s other luxury car builders with its EQB and EQE platforms. The EQB is a four-door SUV that has two models planned. Both will have two electric motors, producing up to 225 horsepower in the EQB 300 4MATIC and up to 288 horsepower in the EQB 350 4MATIC.
The EQE is a four-door sedan with dual electric motors providing drivers with up to 288 horsepower. The initial production model will have rear-wheel drive. Mercedes intends to add all-wheel drive in future models. The instrument panel wraps around the driver position and enables touch-screen inputs to track and modify performance.
Mercedes provides a 66.5-kWh battery for its electric vehicles. Onboard technology helps to extend the driving range by conserving energy whenever possible and reducing the drain on the battery. The relatively small battery still provides good range and recharges in about 11 hours.