The Ford F-150 Lightning electric truck won’t be the towing champ of the lineup, but that’ll suit buyers just fine. After all, it’s luring a lot of buyers with its home-powering emergency generator function, and many of these folks are likely to be first-time pickup buyers. So it’s key that towing and other pickup-functions be made as easy as possible for these noobs.
Nobody will be surprised to learn that the F-150’s targeted 300-mile range will drop when you load the bed or hook up a trailer, but Ford is taking extraordinary measures to ensure that the onboard trip computer always tells you exactly how much your range you can expect. The company has been monitoring range predictions that its current fleet of cloud-connected Mustang Mach-Es have been making and comparing this against actual miles driven, along with climactic, topological, and other conditions. It’s preparing an over-the-air software update for the Mach-E that will take more of these conditions into account, improving the general range-prediction accuracy in everyday driving, and increasing that accuracy even further whenever a trip destination is input. Knowing where the vehicle is going allows more precise topology, climate, traffic, and other conditions to be accounted for, improving the accuracy of the range prediction.
The F-150 Lightning electric truck will be able to take this even further, with the ability to sense payload by utilizing the weight sensors at each corner, and by sensing the mass and aero load of a trailer. Owners can enter a trailer profile, programming in the length, height, mass, etc., and this data may be more accurate, but by driving the truck a short distance, the truck is able to “verify” the trailer, ensuring the trailer profile info is correct. For the full story, check out this article from Motor Trend.