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This Week in Cars: Ford Unveils the Lightning, Biden Talks EV Infrastructure

This Week in Cars: Ford Unveils the Lightning, Biden Talks EV Infrastructure
this week in cars: <a href=>ford</a> unveils the lightning, biden talks ev infrastructure
john roecar and driver

while ford was distracting us all with the launch of the f-150 lightning, gmc quietly confirmed one shocking detail about its own electric truck, the hummer ev. the pickup version of that truck (it will also be available as an suv) will weigh 9046 pounds, 2000 pounds more than a silverado hd, at launch. gmc says that despite its massive footprint, the truck will reach 60 mph in less than three seconds. what a world.

this week in sheetmetal

ford unveiled the ev version of its f-150 pickup and shared some details—such as that the truck will have 563 horsepower—but failed to elaborate on others, like how far it can go between charges while towing. the truck won't be available until next spring, but interested shoppers can reserve one now for $100. ford says more than 40,000 people have already raised their hands (and sent money).

mercedes showed what we expect to be its last new v-12–powered car, the maybach s680. it'll have 621 horsepower and reclining leather rear seats and will almost certainly cost more than $200,000.

kia was in on the ev game this week, too. taking over times square, the company announced its ev6 sedan with an estimated 300 miles of range will be available in the u.s. next year. the ev6 will come in a variety of configurations including a 576-hp gt model.

mazda has confirmed that its 6 sedan and cx-3 micro-crossover will not be returning to the brand's u.s. lineup after the 2021 model year.

mr. biden goes to dearborn

the day before ford officially revealed the lightning, president biden visited ford's dearborn, michigan, ev plant and detailed his plan to invest $174 billion in evs and ev infrastructure. part of the pitch was that american companies should build their electric cars in the united states. that was perhaps a pointed criticism for ford's crosstown rival, general motors, which recently got into a dispute with the united auto workers over gm's plan to invest $1 billion in building evs in mexico rather than in the u.s. (ford's mustang mach-e, it should be noted, is assembled in mexico.) biden's plan also includes $100 billion in incentives for consumers to buy evs, and $15 billion to install half a million charging stations in the next nine years.

while in dearborn, the president got himself behind the wheel of an f-150 lightning, which he says, apparently based on a seat-of-the-pants estimate, can reach 60 mph in 4.4 seconds. as he put it, "this sucker's quick!"

press pause

general motors will halt the corvette's assembly line next week due to unspecified parts supply issues, and ford will pause production on the f-150, bronco sport, escape, and mustang for varying periods of time next month as the global semiconductor shortage drags on. there's no immediate solution to this problem on the horizon. president biden's commerce secretary, gina raimondo, said on thursday that she would not recommend that automakers get priority over other companies in the scramble for microchips. carmakers are facing competition from the makers of laptops and other home electronics, who scooped up the orders that automakers dropped at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic when demand for new cars cratered.

the semiconductor shortage has led to rising prices for new and used cars. this week, kelly blue book reported that the average transaction price for a new light vehicle was $40,768 in april. that's up 2.2 percent or $864 compared to last april. not everyone's a winner, though. transaction prices for new teslas are down 10.3 percent, to $50,705, compared to last april.

further reading

lots of people had a lot to say about the f-150 lightning this week. read about it in the new york times, the wall street journal, or better yet, car and driver.

the centers for disease control say vaccinated americans can ditch their masks. read about why carmakers aren't ready for their employees to go maskless at work.

it was a big week at ford, but not all the news was good: new reports showed that ford lost $12 billion in brazil over the past 10 years.

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