BY GREG FINK | CarAndDriver.Com
Troy Warren for CNT #Cars
The Blue Oval’s F-150 Lightning electric and PowerBoost hybrid pickups can use an onboard generator to become mobile Level 2 EV chargers and help out other EVs.
- Ford F-150 Lightning and PowerBoost hybrid models offer Level 2 EV charging capability courtesy of optional Pro Power Onboard generators.
- The standard 2.4-kilowatt Pro Power Onboard generator, however, lacks this feature.
- The upcoming F-150 EV, the Lightning, offers an available 9.6-kW generator, while the PowerBoost hybrid is available with a 7.2-kW setup.
Call it the EV Centipede, because Ford’s electrified F-150 models are capable of charging other electric (and presumably plug-in gasoline-electric hybrid) vehicles by using the Lightning electric and PowerBoost hybrid trucks’ available 7.2- or 9.6-kW onboard generators. Now that should generate some goodwill.
Dubbed Pro Power Onboard, the optional function includes a 240-volt plug for Level 2 charging capability. A lesser, 2.4-kW variant of Pro Power Onboard is standard on both the F-150 Lightning electric and PowerBoost hybrid pickups, but it does without the 240-volt plug. Ford claims F-150 models so equipped are capable of adding up to 20 miles of range in an hour to a rear-wheel-drive Mustang Mach-E equipped with the SUV’s larger battery pack; 13 miles of range in an hour to an F-150 Lightning; and 10 miles of range in an hour to a Ford E-Transit cargo van with a low roof.
Sure, those sums won’t exactly break any charging-rate records, but even so, it’s nice to know your F-150 can add a few extra miles of range to the EV of a fellow driver that ran out of electricity just a few miles shy of the nearest charging station. Likewise, it seems consumers who own two EVs yet rely largely on a single charging outlet, can create the aforementioned EV Centipede by plugging their F-150 Lightning into their grid-fed charging outlet while simultaneously charging their other EV from the Lightning’s 240-volt outlet. In fact, it seems that with enough F-150 Lightnings, this theoretical EV Centipede can go on for miles and miles, with each Ford truck drawing a charge from the one in front of it.
That said, Pro Power Onboard isn’t strictly for charging other EVs. All versions of the onboard generator are capable of powering or charging small electronics such as cellphones or laptops courtesy of their 120-volt outlets. Or, as we learned earlier, an F-150 PowerBoost hybrid with the optional 7.2-kW Pro Power Onboard generator can power a house.
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