Three F150 Lightning Challenges in Australia

So all the F150 Lightning Reviews have been dropping over the last couple of days, thanks in part to Ford placing an embargo on reviews.

Now while the Ute looks absolutely brilliant, I can see some issues that may end up cropping up for some people in Australia when they import them, or if Ford comes through and actually starts selling them in 2023 like they have announced.

Hopefully the price comes in at a lot less than what we have previously estimated.

Here are the Top 3 Issues we can see the F150 Lightning facing when it comes to Australia!

3. Front of the car

Now I love the fact that the Froot is massive, it gives ute owners a place to stick things where you otherwise would not have a sealed place in the average ute. Meaning that the days of getting a whole tonneau cover or canopy just so the kids school bags can go in the back on the way to dropoff, or your tools need a massive canopy to live under, while you then have to tow a trailer to go to Bunnings are gone!

Personally, I’m wondering how this is going to work with the average bullbar, it looks like you are either going to need to have a bullbar that sits much further out from the front of the car to allow the grille to swing out of the way, or the bullbar will need to fold down out of the way so you can load things in and out of the Froot.

2. Charging Port

So the charger for the F150 Lightning is located just in front of the (Australian) Passenger Door, and just behind the wheel arch.

This takes up a large chunk of the front guard, and means that you will have very little room along the front guard to add things like Brush rails. You know, those things that stop kangaroos decimating the front corner of your car?

Image Courtesy of Tuff Bullbars Source

Now although the picture above is of an F250, the bars will run in the same general area, and that means that you would have to design the brush bars around the awkwardly located charging port

1. Actually fitting into chargers

Now the Australian Standard for Car Spaces sits at:

(a) A dedicated (non-shared) space as follows: (i) In Australia—2400 mm wide by 5400 mm long.

STANDARDS AUSTRALIA/STANDARDS NEW ZEALAND
Committee CE-001— Parking Facilities
DRAFT
Australian/New Zealand Standard
Parking facilities

This length is considered standard for both Disabled and Non-Disabled parking spaces. However even if it wasn’t, you would probably find that your average car space would be smaller than a disabled space…not bigger….so using the biggest legislated space here for an example is actually beneficial to the F150…

Now the F150 Lightning is 232.7 inches long, or, in the rest of the world terms, 5,910.58mm long, meaning that you will be hanging outr of the average car space.

Add a Tow Bar and a Bullbar into the mix, especially a bullbar that needs to accommodate the Froot, and you can easily add nearly half a meter to that length (Factoring in the towbar as well)

So that means that in your average 5,400mm long car space, you’ll be squeezing in a ute that’s ~1 meter longer than the car space, at ~6,410.58mmlong once you add a bullbar and towbar.

But I can hear you in the comments!

You aren’t supposed to have your towbar fitted when not towing!

Angry people on the internet

And yes, I agree wholeheartedly, my shins can feel the towbars in my local carpark.

Though given the size of the F150, it will be my kneecaps, not my shins.

The fact remains that there are approximately zero chargers in Australia that can currently accomodate a vehicle of this size, towing a trailer of the size intended to be towed behind the F150 (You don’t buy one to tow your 6×4 box trailer)

You buy the F150 to tow big things, and realistically, what charging is going to look like in Australia for a long time is that you’ll see a trailer abandoned on one side of the carpark, or a side road, and the F150 charging in the charging bays nearby.

I’m a bit lazy, the last thing I’m going to do after I find a charger, get into the carpark, find a spot, park my trailer, unhitch my trailer, and then go to the charger is take out my tow hitch. So if it hangs 100-200mm out of the back of my car…well…that’s just how it is.

I know that’s how most people will feel about it.

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