• The Switchgear prototype is based on the F-150 Lightning XLT (which means a dual motor setup and the extended-range battery) with the same 580-horsepower and 775 lb-ft of torque.
  • This truck will likely (at some point) bring an all-electric platform to the Raptor lineup.
  • The build includes a wider body, steel rock rails, and FOX 3-inch diameter internal bypass shock absorbers (among many other modifications).
Images courtesy of Ford
Images courtesy of Ford
Images courtesy of Ford
Images courtesy of Ford

There aren’t any doubts in my mind; the Ford F-150 Raptor is the king of the off-roading pickup truck market (sorry TRX); in fact, I was able to review a 1st generation on my YouTube channel recently

However, one thing that Ford still needs is a Raptor version of the F-150 Lightning. The Lightning and the Raptor are based on the same platform (the F-150), meaning it should be relatively easy to make that happen.

However, Ford announced their first foray into the off-road market this week with an all-electric concept truck called the F-150 Switchgear (there is a more pavement-based truck, but we have yet to get much information on that).

While this truck isn’t meant to be a production vehicle, it is more of a demonstration (similar to the SuperVan 4.0 and 4.2, the Mustang Mach-E 1400, Mustang CobraJet 1400, and the F-100 Eluminator) of what an all-electric off-road truck based on the F-150 could be.

This would make it closer to a concept, to feel out the market, and see if this is something that customers may want in their driveway (let’s ignore that Ford is also reducing production on the Lightning by 50% due to low demand, of course).

So, let’s dig into precisely what this Switchgear has so you can decide if this is a new dream truck.

Suspension Upgrades

Images courtesy of Ford
Images courtesy of Ford
Images courtesy of Ford

Much like what you would expect from a Raptor-ized Lightning, the Switchgear comes with FOX 3-inch diameter internal bypass shock absorbers (giving it 11″ of travel at the front and 13″ at the rear), which will likely be working somewhat hard, considering the standard Lighting sits at 8,550 pounds (GVWR).

Working with the Fox Shocks, you will also find custom independent double-wishbone suspension at the front—multilink independent suspension at the rear, coil-over shocks, a stabilizer bar, and custom control arms.

Body Upgrades

While the suspension upgrades may be the show’s star (much like the Raptor), they would be nothing without body upgrades to support the additional travel and larger tires (NITTO Ridge Grappler 37×12.5R18 tires).

Because of that, it has an upgraded front and rear bumper, with better angles for approach and departure. It also has carbon composite front fenders and bed sides, making this truck 12 inches wider (a total of 80″ inches) than the standard F-150’s 60 inches.

Other Additions

Ford’s off-road concept comes with some other nifty features, including:

  1. It has a massive handbrake for drifting off-road.
  2. A spare wheels and tire carried via a rack in the bed of the truck.
  3. Five Recaro race seats (with six-point harnesses) are included in the truck.

What are Austin’s thoughts?

The F-150 Raptor has long been a dream truck of mine, and I have always wondered why there hasn’t been an off-road-oriented Lighting truck in their lineup to act as a halo truck for their off-road electric brand. While this Switchgear may be a concept vehicle, it is moving in the right direction.

It would have been awesome to see a power bump over the XLT Lightning that it was based on (considering the Mustang Mach-E 1400 had 1400 horsepower), but its instant torque that is gained from the electric drivetrain should be a blast to drive (having driven a Lightning with this setup, it’s quite impressive).

All that said, I hope for the best on this build, and I would enjoy seeing this in production. While I would rather have the F-150 Raptor R (which likely has a similar price tag to what a production version of the Switchgear would have), this could be an excellent vehicle.