Ford introduced the world this week to the Maverick — a smaller, hybrid truck. Concurrently, the demand for the electric F-150 Lightning is soaring with 100,000 pre-orders placed. This suggests new possibilities for Ford, an iconic Michigan brand and the global leader in trucks.
Automotive reporter, Sonari Glinton, is the host of Now What’s Next. He thinks that the stereotypical consumer for electric vehicles is now changing with the introduction of vehicles such as the Maverick and F-150 Lightning.
“What's interesting is that the strategy of Tesla — they're still kind of in the fancy places. You know, you've got to go to Troy to see it,” said Glinton. “But there's a Ford dealership essentially in every congressional district. And so what that means is that people who haven’t gotten into an electric car might actually get to see one. Test drive one. And that is meaningful for the overall adoption rate of these vehicles.”
Glinton mentioned that he is generally stunned by the slow adoption rates of electric vehicles. But that might change as car companies start releasing more affordable options.
“Once you have driven an electric car, it's like it's almost impossible to go back,” Glinton said. “So this is really important. Very few people are driving these things yet, right? And over 100 cars or trucks are coming to the market in the next 18 months or so.”
The Ford Maverick’s starting cost is $20,000 — a price substantially lower than other hybrid cars and other trucks on the market. And Glinton said it has “the fuel economy of not having to put a mortgage payment into your gas tank.”
So who is the mini hybrid truck for? It’s for the working people, according to Glinton. And it’s the start of the automotive industry accepting that they cannot meet all the challenges without making products for all of the people. Glinton emphasizes that this is not to ignore the writ large wrongdoings of the companies, but it is a sign that they are moving in the direction of public interests.
“You cannot meet the challenges that Detroit needs without all of the people, and I think that some of the some of the companies are beginning to. Just beginning,” Glinton said. “These companies, you see that, the market is too big to ignore green, green is too bright of a color sometimes to ignore.”
This post was written by Stateside production assistant Catherine Nouhan