Top EV Pickup Trucks – The Early Entrants

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Pickup trucks are the most popular form of automotive transportation in America, so it is not surprising that the surging interest in all-electric rides has generated a raft of EV trucks and wannabe trucks. Today, there are only three production EV trucks on our streets, the lifestyle Rivian L1T, crab walking GMC Hummer, and working man’s Ford F150 Lightning. In the wings are pickups from mainstream manufacturers and startups alike who have models that may, or may not, go into production in the next two years.

If we included them all, it would look like a list of brands from the late 19th century when the first horseless carriages replaced the one to four-horsepower buggies with completely new vehicles capable of incredible speed and no poop to pick up. But because most of those brands disappeared after a short run, we will stick to models that appear likely to hit the road, in one form or another, in the next 24 months.

The Three EV Pioneers

First to the marketplace are three EV trucks that are really competing for three different (albeit wealthy) audiences. Being first greatly enhances brand awareness, but it also gives the makers two years of actual field experience to tweak, refine, and improve their rides before serious competition arrives. So let’s take a quick look at each:

GMC Hummer

Welcome to a new class of pickup. This one has an Ultium 24-module battery that generates 1,000 horsepower spread through three motors for a combined axel torque of 11,500 lb-ft. Three amazing driving modes, including Crab Walk and Watts to Freedom (aka launch mode), allow for all-wheel steering and supercar acceleration (0 to 60 in 3 seconds). But at the heart of this beast is the new Ultium platform and battery chemistry that gives this truck a range of 320 miles, 7,500 lb. towing and 1,00 payload, superfast DC charging capability, and a host of abilities including one-pedal driving and autonomous features no other truck has ever been able to do. Of course, all this tech comes at a cost. Starting at $108,700, the Hummer currently has commanded over $200,000 in some markets.

Rivian L1T

A “lifestyle” vehicle with a luxurious, tech-packed cabin, the R1T comes loaded with some serious off-road cred, including the ability to climb at a 450 angle. Range and performance depend on the battery installed. The standard pack offers up to 230 miles of range, 402 horsepower, and 413 lb-ft of torque, while the extended range battery provides 314 miles of range, 754 horsepower, and 826 lb-ft of torque. Rivian claims a 0 to 60 time of 3 seconds. An adjustable air suspension system and super low center of gravity give this ride surprising maneuverability on sketchy terrain. Smaller than a full-size but larger than a mid-size, the L17 comfortably seats five and carries a starting price of $68,575 but can quickly get to $100,000+.

Ford F150 Lightning

There are really two versions of the new EV F159. The entry trim Pro has an excellent package and an after-federal tax credit cost of about $32,000 that will sell like hotcakes to fleets, and the XLT trim and up trims compete for off-road enthusiasts and can run $70,000 and up. The Lariat is a two-motor model with an extended range battery that has a range of 300 miles, 585 horsepower, tows 10,000 lbs., and hauls 2.250 lbs. of payload. The multi-purpose frunk offers over 14 cu ft of secure storage plus 120v and 220 v outlets perfect for charging power tools. An optional power takeoff can even power the average home for three days during a power outage.​​​​​​​

What the Next Two Years Are Likely to Provide

While there is a raft of proposed electric pickups, here are a few that have overcome basic challenges and most likely will produce some form of vehicle in the next two years.

Tesla Cybertruck

Redefining what a pickup appears to be the primary goal of this “supertruck”. With an exoskeleton of hard rolled steel and Tesla Armor Glass and a design that is definitely “next world,” the Cybertruck purportedly has a tri-motor drivetrain that can go 500 miles, tow14,000 lbs., and get to 60 mph in 2.8 seconds. And that’s just the beginning. Prices start at $49,900.

Chevrolet Silverado EV

Built on the same platform and in the same plant as the GMC Hummer, the Silverado will be a dual motor drivetrain that generates 400 miles of range, can tow 10,000 lbs. and carry 1,300 lbs. Priced from $42,000 to $107,000, this Chevy is expected to be stiff competition for the F150 EV.

Lordstown Endurance

Sporting a unique four-motor hub system, the Endurance claims a range of 250 miles, 600 horsepower, and a towing capacity of 7,500 lbs. This five-passenger crew cab ride is little known other than it has undergone some serious financial and legal problems. Scheduled for release in 2023, the Endurance will be priced at $52,500.

There are many more EV trucks in development, including models from mainstream manufacturers like Toyota and RAM, but we will have to wait and see what actually hits the streets.