Lordstown on the Electrification of Pickup Trucks — CleanTechnica Interview

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CleanTechnica and Forth are hosting a webinar on electric pickup trucks to celebrate Drive Electric Week on September 30, 2020. One of our panelists will be Cynthia Maves, a sales manager at Lordstown Motors. Lordstown is the company repurposing the shuttered GM plant in Lordstown, Ohio, to produce electric pickup trucks for commercial fleets. On June 25, 2020, the company announced its Endurance model, with production expected to begin in 2021.

We sat down with Cynthia to pick her brain about the current state of the electric pickup market segment:

Forth: Why do you think it is important to electrify this segment of the automotive industry?

Cynthia Maves: There are many key directions in this segment, including clean energy results, lowering of greenhouse gas (GHG) emission numbers, transportation innovation, and hugely positive reduction in total-cost-of-ownership for fleets in reduced maintenance and fuel costs. Every segment in the world of transportation will be electrified in the years ahead, and today’s progress is exciting. It is a major strategic opportunity to reduce the nation’s focus on foreign oil and to grow America’s energy independence.

Forth: What advantages and disadvantages does an electric pickup truck have over its ICE counterpart?

Cynthia Maves: Lower maintenance costs and service requirements, lower “fuel” costs to electrify a vehicle as opposed to gasoline purchase, and excitingly positive truck performance are the most significant advantages, along with very positive and high contributions to local economies. The Endurance is viewed as a 5× better mileage equivalent and 65% lower maintenance costs versus a similar size ICE pickup truck. The only disadvantage, which we most commonly refer to as a bit of an obstacle, is that many fleet organizations must make plans to manage the need for EV charging stations and infrastructure. Even this obstacle is being aggressively addressed by industry leaders in order to help us all move ahead.

Lordstown Motors Endurance electric pickup truck
Lordstown Endurance

Forth: What types of consumers will be the early adopters of an electric pickup truck?

Cynthia Maves: LMC is strategically focused immediately on commercial fleets and is not emphasizing the consumer market evaluation at this time. Even so, many individuals have executed a pre-order of the Endurance on our corporate site.

Forth: What industries will be the early adopters of electric pickup and delivery vehicles?

Cynthia Maves: Today, utilities, government entities, construction, and agriculture represent the strongest and most immediately committed industry segments in moving forward with electric light-duty pickup trucks.

Forth: What will electric pickup trucks look like two years from now?

Cynthia Maves: With battery technology continuing to innovate, telematics options expanding, and general vehicle improvement growing, the industry status in two years will represent very significant market growth and EV acceptance. It will be exciting to see more and more EV truck purchases becoming the normal and daily activity of the industry.

Join us for a deep dive on electric pickup trucks September 30 at 1:00 pm ET.

Images courtesy of Lordstown Motors, via CleanTechnica

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Joe Wachunas

Joe lives in Portland, Oregon, and works to promote electric and decarbonized buildings. He believes that electrifying everything, from transportation to homes, is the quickest path to an equitable, clean energy future. Joe and his family live in an all-electric home and drive an EV.

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