After reading today’s story in the Detroit Free Press, I emailed Ford and my local Ford dealer to cancel my reservation for a new F-150 Lightning.
Photo: 1988 F-350 4×4 dump truck I owned during my landscape contracting career.
I saw something like this coming a while ago, after learning that dealerships can mark-up the MSRP on a vehicle, and some dealers regularly do mark them up, a few thousand dollars. While I wasn’t sure if that might happen to me, it began to feel more likely in today’s new and used vehicle markets, with ballooning prices.
But the real ringer was reading the part about having to sign a legal contract not to sell the vehicle within one year of purchase. No way I would ever sign anything like that! After all, who owns the truck, them or me?
The thing that had interested me most about the F-150 Lightning was the home battery backup feature, but it was never clear if the base model would allow for that, or what additional costs might be involved, so it would dovetail with our solar panels and Tesla Powerwall.
Many of the new EV’s being introduced in future years will have that same home battery backup feature, so it really wasn’t going to be that exclusive anyway. Besides, it’s usually not a good idea to buy a first year model vehicle, since they are known to have issues that need to be worked out.
“Ford Motor Co., concerned about its reputation and customer complaints related to the upcoming launch of the F-150 Lightning, is warning dealers not to upsell reservations for the popular EV truck and also wants customers to sign a contract preventing them from reselling it within a year, according to a letter from the automaker to its dealers. The warning letter, dated Friday, is addressed to all dealer principals, the general manager and sales managers.”
I’m happy with my Chevy Bolt anyway, especially since GM installed a new battery in December, with a full 8-year 100,000 mile warranty. Who knows, maybe someday I’ll get a new electric Silverado from the same dealer who I’ve grown to like and trust. Without any strings attached!
UPDATE: The $100 refund of my May 2021 deposit posted on my credit card statement 2-days later. My local dealer also said they will be charging buyers MSRP, with no markups.