For many drivers, nothing is more quintessentially “American” than a large pickup barreling down the highway. To others, however, this is problematic, as pickup trucks are far less fuel-efficient than other vehicles – to say nothing of the carbon footprint generated by all of these trucks.
Thus, the recent announcement by Ford Motor Company that it is expanding its famed River Rouge plant to build electric-powered F-150 pickup trucks by 2022 will be music to the ears of both truck enthusiasts and environmentalists alike – to say nothing of those who will be hired to staff this facility.
Indeed, this announcement reflects two somewhat contradictory yet American trends. Demand for pickup trucks, SUVs, and other large vehicles continues to climb as Americans look for vehicles that have more cargo and carrying capacity, higher drivers’ seats that provide improved visibility, and better safety records in collisions. But, interest in electric vehicles has also risen as consumers consider their benefits. In addition to environmental factors – electric vehicles do not generate carbon emissions and pollutants, and can be powered (in some cases) by renewable energy sources – there are also concrete economic benefits to electric vehicles – many drivers appreciate never having to empty their wallets while filling up at the pump!
As demand for electric automobiles is expected to rise, Ford anticipates that truck owners – known to passionately brand loyal – will be able to shift their allegiances to electric-powered pickup trucks with much less difficulty.