Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed!

The Ford F-150 and Chevy Silverado carry over their rivalry to the EV segment

Automakers, new and old, have been stirring the electric pickup truck segment for a long time now. We had Rivian showcase the R1T, back in 2018, Tesla come out with the quirky Cybertruck in 2019, and a plethora of other automakers like Ford, Lordstown, Bollinger, GMC, and Alpha, among others, reveal their products soon after. So far, only a handful of them have been launched as production models, with the Ford F-150 Lightning. being one of them. Surprisingly, Ford’s chief rival in the truck segment, Chevrolet, took a long time to showcase its EV truck. But, in early 2022, the automaker revealed the Silverado EV. and gave us a few details about it. Here’s all we know about the truck and how it squares up with the F-150 Lightning.

Both Come With A Wide Variety Of Trims

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed! Exterior
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The Ford F-150 Lightning is offered in three base trims XLT, Lariat, and Platinum - and a work truck model – Pro. Chevy, on the other hand, has revealed the Silverado EV with just two trims for now - WT and RST. The RST will have a First Edition, which will be as loaded as you can expect a truck and an EV to be. We expect both automakers to add more trims once sales ‘pick up’ (pun intended). There is a huge price disparity between the trims with both the trucks, so that serves as a testament to more trims being added at some point.

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed!
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We expect King Ranch and Limited to join the F-150 Lightning’s portfolio, and LTZ and High Country joining the Silverado EV. We don’t think either of the automakers will give new names to the trims… name recall and continuing the legacy, you see!

The F-150 Lightning and the Silverado EV, by the way, will be offered in one body style each – SuperCrew and Crew Cab, respectively.

Chevy Pulls One Over On Ford With An Off-Road Model

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed!
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What does Chevy have on its electric truck that Ford doesn’t yet – an off-road trim! Apart from the WT and the RST trims, the Bowtie also announced an off-road Trailboss model on the Silverado EV.

We don’t have all the details yet, but the one picture that the automaker revealed showed the model’s black front fascia with LED lights and an LED DRL strip running the entire width. There’s honeycomb mesh at the bottom, partly covered by a matte gray bull bar-like element. It sits a lot higher than the standard EV trims. The truck is also riding on all-terrain tires wrapped around a unique set of wheels.

We expect to see air springs, four-wheel-steering, and computer-controlled locking diffs. Features like Crab Walk and Super Cruise could be offered, too. Since it’s an off-road-oriented trim, we could also see Ultravision cameras that offer multiple underbody views could be a standard offering. On the Hummer, this setup gives 18 views, but here it could be a slightly watered-down system. We speculate a price of around $80,000 for this trim.

The Silverado EV Offers More Range

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed! Exterior Interior
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The Silverado trumps the F-150 Lightning in arguably the most important aspect. Chevy announced that the Silverado EV will have a range of 400 miles, which is significantly more than the F-150 Lightning’s. The F-150 Lightning with the Standard Range battery is good for 230 miles on a single charge, whereas the Extended Range battery will stay with you for 300 miles before it gives up.

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed!
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For now, Chevy has announced only one battery pack option, but we are certain a smaller pack will be offered, too. We speculate a range of 250-280 miles on that, which will be more than the Ford Standard Range pack’s 230-mile range.

There’s no word on the capacities yet, but based on the charging times and some back-of-the-envelope calculations, the Standard Range pack might be around 120 kWh, whereas the Extended Range pack might be around 175 kWh. The Silverado EV, for now, is announced with a single battery pack. Using the F-150 Lightning’s math as the benchmark, we speculate a 200 kWh battery pack on the Silverado EV.

The Jury Is Still Out On The Charging Aspect

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed! Exterior
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Ford has given out a detailed explanation of the charging times. It supports up to 150 kW of DC fast-charging.

In the case of the Standard Range battery, the charging times are as follows:

  • 150 kW DC charger: 15 to 80-percent in 44 minutes/41 miles of range in 10 minutes
  • 50 kW charger: 15 to 80-percent in 91 minutes
  • 240W mobile charger: 15 to 100-percent in 14 hours
  • Ford Charge Station Pro or a Connected Charger Station: 10 hours to 100-percent

With the Extended Range battery in your truck, expect the following times:

  • 150 kW DC charger: 15 to 80-percent in 41 minutes/54 miles of range in 10 minutes
  • 50 kW charger: 15 to 80-percent in 122 minutes
  • 240W mobile charger: 15 to 100-percent in 19 hours
  • Ford Charge Station Pro: Eight hours to 100-percent
  • Connected Charger Station: 13 hours to 100-percent
Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed!
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Exact details for the Chevy Silverado aren’t known yet, but we know that the battery will support up to 350 kW DC fast-charging, thanks to the 800-volt architecture. You can add 100 miles of range in 10 minutes.

Chevy Beats The Ford In The Power Department As Well!

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed! Exterior
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All the trims on both, the Ford F-150 Lightning and the Silverado EV, come with two motors as standard. With the Standard-Range battery pack, the EV churns out 426 horsepower and 775 pound-feet of torque. With the Extended-Range battery pack and you’ll have 563 horses and the same 775 pound-feet of torque at your disposal.

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed!
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Things are a little different on the Silverado. The WT trim will make 510 horses and 615 pound-feet of torque, whereas the RST First Edition is said to make 664 horsepower and 780 pound-feet of torque. If you take maximum power output as your baseline, then Chevrolet takes the W here.

The 0-60 mph times weren’t revealed, but Ford noted that the F-150 Lightning will be able to sprint to 60 mph from a standstill in mid-four seconds. This is similar to the RST First Edition’s numbers, which can touch 60 mph from rest in 4.5 seconds with the ‘Wide Open Watts’ (WOW) Mode.

Bigger Touchscreen On The Ch’EV’y

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed! Interior
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The Ford has a pretty neat cabin with a lot of features like a 10-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, optional Max Recline Seats, Interior Work Surface, etc. We even have upholstery info on the Ford truck, but Chevy hasn’t revealed any information in this regard. However, it announced some tech features.

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed!
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In the F-150 Lightning, you’ll get a 15.5-inch touchscreen powered by the SYNC4A system on the Lariat and Platinum trims, and a 12-inch touchscreen on the XLT and Pro models. You also get a 12-inch digital instrument cluster behind the steering wheel. On the Silverado EV, Chevy has plonked a 17-inch screen along with an 11-inch digital instrument cluster and a 14-inch head-up display. This is on the RST First Edition, but there’s no word about the screen size on the lower trims.

Other create comforts on the F-150 Lightning include Push Button Start, 360-degree Camera, 18-speaker B&O sound system on the Platinum, etc. Chevy is yet to give out the complete feature list, but it has one thing the Lightning doesn’t – the Super Cruise Hands-Free Driver Assistance Technology. It can be used on 200,000 miles of roads in the U.S. and Canada.

The Silverado EV Looks Sharper

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed! Exterior
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Looks are subjective, so I’m not going to pick a favorite here. To be honest, I liked both the designs. The F-150 Lightning looks modern and in line with the designs that you see on EVs. You get a full-width LED strip at the front and rear, and a closed grille up front. The Pro and XLT trims come with 18-inch wheels, the Lariat with 20-inch, and Platinum with 22-inch wheels. There are also things like Zone Lighting that basically light up the truck’s surroundings and will be very helpful when camping at night.

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed!
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The Silverado EV looks pretty sweet and has a strong resemblance with the Chevy Avalanche, especially when viewed from the side. The RST looks more upscale, obviously, whereas the WT has more basic stuff like black cladding, black bumpers, etc. The RST First Edition will come with massive 24-inch wheels from the factory.

Ford has pinned the F-150 Lightning on a high-strength steel frame and said that the body and bed are composed of high-strength, military-grade aluminum alloy. The Silverado EV is based on a narrower version of the Ultium platform that also underpins the Hummer EV.

Ford Loses The Tailgate War

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed! Exterior
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Ram, GMC, Chevy, all of them have tailgates that can do a lot more than just opening and closing. The F-150 Lightning comes with a simple power tailgate, whereas the Silverado EV will feature a Multi-Flex tailgate. The Lightning’s tailgate comes with an integrated ‘Tailgate Work Surface’ that’s basically a workstation on the tailgate that comes with a ruler, clamp mounts, and tie-down rings. It also doubles up as a bottle opener and a tablet holder. It is offered on the Lariat and the Platinum, and is optional on the XLT.

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed!
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The Silverado EV’s Multi-Flex tailgate, on the other hand, is a lot more versatile. It is the same MultiPro tailgate offered on GMC trucks, but with a different name for Bowtie. It can be operated in six different ways, including as a step to climb into the bed. You also get something known as the Multi-Flex Midgate here which helps expand the truck’s cargo capability while maintaining seating for a rear-row passenger. It’s a 60:40 kind of a situation with the rear privacy glass and bed wall falling down to accommodate longer stuff.

Is Towing Important To You? Opt For Chevy

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed! Exterior
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The towing and payload capacities vary depending on the battery pack on both trucks. The F-150 Lightning can tow up to 7,700 pounds with the Standard-Range battery and up to 10,000 pounds with the Extended-Range battery and Maximum Trailer Tow Package. One-million pounds what? The F-150 Lightning also features similar mounting points to the current F-150 for easy fitting along with a standard Class IV hitch.

The Silverado, on the other hand, can tow up to 8,000 pounds on WT trim and up to 10,000 pounds on the RST. The reason why Chevy won this round is that the company noted that it will release a Max Tow Package after the EV is launched that will allow you to tow up to 20,000 pounds. We expect Ford to fight back in this regard, but for now, Chevy has the upper hand, provided the Max Tow Package is available right from launch.

Ford Might Have Lost The Towing Battle, But Not The Payload

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed!
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The F-150 Lightning can haul up to 2,000 pounds with the Standard-Range battery pack and 1,800 pounds with the Extended-Range pack. The Silverado EV, however, can haul up to 1,200 pounds in the WT trim and up to 1,300 pounds on the RST.

The Silverado EV Will Feature A Bigger Onboard Generator

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed! Exterior
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Chevy sure has come out all guns blazing with the Silverado EV and has countered the F-15 Lightning in almost every department. The F-150 Lightning comes with the Pro Power Onboard as standard. The Pro and XLT trims feature a 2.4 kW Pro Power onboard generator, whereas the Lariat and Platinum come with a 9.6 kW capacity generator. The smaller capacity onboard generator features eight 120V outlets – two in the cab, two in the bed, and four in the frunk. With the larger one, you get ten 120V outlets - and two in the cab, four in the bed, and four in the frunk, and also a 240V outlet in the bed.

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed!
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The Silverado EV will be offered with a 10.2 kW PowerBase charging system onboard generator. It is said to be optional, but that could be on the lower trims. Expect the top trims to have it as standard. It will come with up to 10 outlets that can be used for the worksite or recreational needs. It can also be used to power your home. You can also charge another EV with your Silverado EV using an accessory charge cord that will be available as an optional accessory.

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed! Exterior
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Ford’s generator can do the same as well. In fact, when the weather in Texas got bad early last year, Ford urged the dealerships in the state to loan out the F-150s with Pro Power Onboard people in need. There were 415 F-150s with the ProPower Onboard in the lots that Ford told the dealerships to loan out. To make it worth their while, the automaker offered an incentive of $600 for every truck loaned out. Mind you, this was the gas-powered F-150 with the ProPower Onboard and not the F-150 Lightning. There’s no word whether the lower trims will have a smaller capacity generator in the Silverado.

Automatic Adaptive Air Suspension On The Silverado EV

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed!
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As for the suspension system, the F-150 Lightning comes with an independent double-wishbone with coilover shocks at the front, and independent semi-trailing arms at the rear. The Silverado EV will also come with independent front and rear suspensions. Automatic adaptive air suspension and four-wheel-steering and some other things the RST First Edition will be offered with. This makes us wonder if Hummer EV’s Crab Walk could be made available as well.

Want A Cheaper Truck? Ford F-150 Lightning It Is!

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed! Exterior Interior
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Ford recently revealed the prices of the F-150 Lightning. Here’s how each trim is priced:

  • Pro - $39,974
  • XLT (SR) - $52,974
  • Lariat (SR) - $67,474
  • Platinum - $90,874

The XLT and Lariat trims can be had with the Extended Range battery pack as well. You’ll have to pay an additional $10,000 for the bigger battery on both trims. However, you’ll have to add the XLT 312A Equipment package worth $19,500 on the XLT, which makes the ER option $19,500 more than the SR XLT. There’s no such requirement on the Lariat, so the difference between Lariat SR and Lariat ER is flat $10,000.

The pricing for these trims with the Extended Range battery is:

  • XLT (ER) - $72,474
  • Lariat (ER) - $77,474

The online configurator went live recently and we played around to see how expensive the F-150 Lightning can get with add-ons and paid options. The answer is $97,249. This includes the base price, cost of the optional items, and the destination fee, but doesn’t account for the credits and rebates.

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed!
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Chevrolet has also announced the prices of the two trims that will be launched:

  • WT - $39,900
  • RST First Edition - $105,000

Do note that the prices don’t include the destination fee or account for the federal tax credits. The company’s CEO, Mary Barry, told Bloomberg that the RST First Edition was sold out in 12 minutes!

Now, on paper, the entry-level pricing seems to be on par. There’s parity in the top-spec pricing, but most people who are ready to shell out around $100,000 for a vehicle won’t let the price be a deciding factor. The automaker even announced that there will be multiple offerings with a starting price of around $50,000, $60,000, $70,000, $80,000, etc. So, there will be something for everyone here as well.

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed!
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That said, the biggest differentiating factor comes in the form of the federal tax credits. GM has exhausted the 200,000 EV cap, which means GM EVs aren’t eligible for the $7,500 federal tax credits. On the other hand, the Ford F-150 Lightning is. When you also count in the state taxes, the F-150 Lightning turns out to be much cheaper than any full-size gas-powered truck that you can buy today. In Maine, it can cost you as low as $26,974! Now, someone buying either of them as a work truck will surely notice the price difference, thus giving Ford a distinct advantage here. All GM can do now is wait for the GREEN Act to be passed.

When Are They Arriving?

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Chevrolet Silverado EV – Full-size Pickup Truck Rivalry Renewed!
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The Silverado EV WT trim will arrive in Spring 2023, whereas the top-sped RST First Edition will come in Fall 2023. The F-150 Lightning’s deliveries were expected to begin in Spring this year. The automaker had to stop taking reservations after it had 200,000 bookings. Ford was targeting production of 40,000 F-150 Lightning annually earlier, then raised it to 80,000, and will ramp it up to 150,000 by mid-2023.

Sidd Dhimaan
Sidd Dhimaan
Managing Editor, Truck Expert, EV Expert - siddhantdhimaan@gmail.com
Sidd joined the Topspeed.com team in 2017 as an intern and in less than a year he earned a full-time position as an associate editor and junior automotive expert. Fast forward to today, and he is currently serving as a managing editor, pickup truck expert, and EV expert.  Read full bio
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