Two legendary names in the truck world are going electric soon. One comes from GMC under the resurrected Hummer banner, and the other is the quintessential American pickup in the form of the Ford F-150 Lightning. The combination of electric power and iconic nameplates is generating plenty of excitement about both. But while they may share pickup body styles and this new approach to powertrains, their future roles and buyers couldn’t be more different. Here’s how they compare.
The 2022 GMC Hummer EV reprises the rugged, off-road look Hummer migrated from military use to the streets. The look of the new EV pays homage to the H2 with its boxy shape, horizontal, slatted grille, and stubby proportions. However, the updated look has a new element in that it has a much more contemporary adventurous feel to it than the original’s emphasis on ruggedness. That promise of off-road fun also comes from the Hummer’s ability to remove the roof panels for more of an open-air experience.
Rooted more in the practicality of a pickup, the 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning looks like a conventional internal combustion engine truck. A clue that this is a different kind of pickup comes from the LED head- and taillamp elements that differentiate the Lightning from the standard F-150. Still, the Lightning follows tradition with its boxy cab and bed. This conservative approach to styling should appeal to the existing truck market, especially those who depend on basic functionality for both work and play.
The Hummer EV uses conventional steel unit-body construction. Under-body armor keeps it true to its off-road mission; these steel plates protect the battery pack and other drivetrain components from rugged terrain. This cladding and the stiff structure provided by the battery pack allow the use of a lightweight composite removable roof that features transparent “Sky Roof” panels.
The Ford F-150 Lightning, like its F Series siblings, employs aluminum body panels. Ford pioneered the use of this material for pickups starting in 2015. The lightweight material is critical to the truck’s performance and range, since it offsets the weight of the battery pack.
The Hummer EV features seating for five in its 4-door crew cab setup. Since the Hummer is more of an upscale off-roader, the interior on all models will be fairly well-appointed. Among the features buyers can expect are a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and a 13.4-inch center infotainment touchscreen. Standard features include removable roof panels, high-definition surround vision cameras, rear cabin power drop glass, and premium all-weather floor liners with carpet inserts. The Hummer EV will also boast GM’s SuperCruise hands-free driving system.
With its conventional crew cab setup, we expect the Ford F-150 to accommodate at least five passengers and perhaps six if Ford offers a front bench on its base work truck. The standard instrumentation includes a 12-inch digital display for the driver and a 12-inch portrait-oriented touchscreen for infotainment. A 15.5-inch center touchscreen is standard on upper trims, along with such features as 10-way power-adjustable seats, 8-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system, and leather seating surfaces.
The 2022 Hummer EV will bow late this year as the top-of-the-line First Edition model (already sold out). It boasts three electric motors, more than 300 miles of range, 1,000 horsepower, and 11,500 lb-ft of torque. Its regular production counterpart will be called the Hummer EV3X and will be available in 2022 but is rated at 830 horsepower while the torque rating remains the same. The EV2X follows and boasts two electric motors, 300 miles of range, 625 horsepower and 7,400 lb-ft of torque. It goes on sale in 2023. The base model EV2 won’t see production until 2024. It will have the same horsepower and torque ratings as the EV2x, but only a 250-mile range. First Edition and 3X models will feature Watts to Freedom, a launch system similar to Tesla’s Ludicrous mode that promises 0-60 mph acceleration of about 3 seconds.
Four trim levels will initially be available on the Ford F-150, a basic work truck, a mid-range XLT trim, and two top-level luxury models in the Lariat and Platinum. Ford will offer a dual-motor setup with one for each axle giving all Lightning models all-wheel drive. The motors provide 426 horsepower in base trim with an upgrade producing 563 horses and 775 lb-ft of torque. The standard battery will provide 230 miles of range, while a larger available pack boosts that figure to 300 miles.
GMC has yet to release towing and payload figures for the Hummer EV. We can speculate that, in top trim with the 11,500 lb-ft torque figure, its towing capability will be more than 10,000 pounds. The Hummer EV features a 5-foot cargo box sporting GM’s flexible-opening Multipro tailgate. A front trunk accommodates the removable roof panels. We expect the payload capacity to be about in the 2,000-pound range given the size of the bed and the power ratings for the various EV drivetrains.
The Ford F-150 Lightning promises a maximum payload of 2,000 pounds, which is about midway between the ratings of conventional Ford pickups, which range from 1,500 to about 5,000 pounds. In top form, the Lightning will be able to tow up to 10,000 pounds. Similar to the standard F-150, we expect the Lighting to come with a 6.5-foot box. The front trunk or frunk can hold 14.1 cubic feet of cargo.
GMC Hummer EV
- EV2 AWD 2-motor: $79,995 (Available 2024)
- EV2X AWD 2-motor: $$89,995 (Available 2023)
- EV3X AWD 3-motor: $99,995 (Available 2022)
- First Edition AWD 3-motor: $112,595 (sold out)
- Not eligible for $7,500 Federal Tax Credit
Ford F-150 Lightning
- Base Dual Motor AWD Work Truck: $39,974
- XLT Dual Motor AWD XLT: $52,974 (a $6,700 premium over a gas XLT 4×4)
- Lariat Dual Motor AWD: Est. $58,630 (based on $6,700 premium over a gas Lariat 4×4)
- Platinum Dual Motor AWD: Est. $69,500 (based on $6,700 premium over a gas Platinum 4×4)
- Top trim: $90,474 (based on top price given by Ford)
- Eligible for $7,500 Federal Tax Credit
2022 GMC Hummer EV Advantages
It’s almost as if being a pickup is incidental to the real reason why buyers will be interested in the 2022 Hummer EV. Underscoring that fact will be an SUV version of essentially the same vehicle. Still, the open back and Multipro tailgate will give the Hummer EV a practical bent that other off-road vehicles of its ilk lack.
As a much more expensive vehicle, the Hummer EV can is more of a recreational piece than a work truck. It also boasts technology like SuperCruise, the ability to move sideways thanks to its Crab Walk system, and the option to quick charge at 800 volts. These attributes give it the kind of cachet that could attract the kind of customers who automatically choose a Tesla.
2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Advantages
The 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning will have an impact on how pickup trucks are used. While the payload and towing capabilities are what you’d expect from a pickup, regularly carrying cargo or towing trailers will greatly impact range and performance. As a result, don’t expect an electric F-150 to replace gas or diesel trucks.
However, the advantage of the F-150 as a power source expands its functionality as a work truck. Ford touts the Lightning as an “Intelligent Backup Power” system, serving as a backup battery. It can provide full-home power for up to three days on a full charge. Also, the 21 external charge points and 11 outlets will make the truck an ideal power source on job sites.
The Bottom Line
Styling, pricing, and intent are hugely different between the 2022 Hummer EV and 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning. The former is meant for serious off-road work, while the latter is meant for serious work. Still, the real value in both coming to the market is to find out whether the public is ready for electric pickup trucks. Because this segment accounts for a large part of annual sales, the success of these two disparate entries will ultimately determine whether large, traditional manufacturers like GM and Ford can effectively compete, not only with each other, but with the growing number of EV start-ups.