Is the Ford F-150 Lightning Better Than Rivian and GMC's Electric Trucks?

The power outputs of the new lot of electric pickup trucks has been dissected for months. Just as important are the features that most people use in a pickup truck every single day. They're in the cabin; they're hauling stuff; they're using the technology. That's all important.

This is a look at how the 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning and its current competitors, the 2022 GMC Hummer EV and 2022 Rivian R1T, stack up against each other in key areas that daily driver buyers are interested in.

Specifications, features and pricing for the upcoming Chevrolet Silverado EV, GMC Sierra EV, and Ram 1500 EV have not yet been revealed.

Power

Of the lot, the Hummer EV has the most output at 1,000 horsepower (hp), its official EPA-estimated range is 329 miles. The Rivian R1T has four motors, 835 hp and a range of 314 miles. The F-150 Lightning was just upgraded to a maximum of 320 miles with the extended-range battery and 580 hp.

If power is your priority, you can't go wrong with any of the options. Even the least powerful on the list, the F-150 Lightning, has more than enough oomph to get the truck down the highway in a jiffy.

Comfort

Starting with the size of the front seats, where owners will spend most of their time, the GMC Hummer is the biggest in head and legroom with 42.5 and 45.6 inches, as expected. The vehicle is more than 6 inches wider than either the Ford or Rivian, though Ford offers the most front seat shoulder and hip room out of the three.

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In the back seat, where all three trucks can carry three passengers, the Ford bests both with 40.4 inches of headroom and 43.6 inches of legroom. It leads in shoulder and legroom too, with the Hummer coming in second.

But cabins are more than just the size. They're the living room of the vehicle, where drivers relax, get entertained and are afforded other conveniences like heat and massage.

Pricing and Value

It's hard to compare the F-150 Lightning Pro work truck to Rivian and GMC, not only because it undercuts their prices by tens of thousands of dollars, but because its also meant for different buyers. We give the Pro excellent marks for its comfortable vinyl seating, easy-to-clean flooring and completely serviceable 12-inch touchscreen display.

To really compare apples to apples it will have to be the F-150 Lightning Lariat, which starts at $67,474 before EV tax credits. That cabin comes with the portrait-oriented 15.5-inch touchscreen, leather-wrapped, heated and cooled seats (though they could be more comfortable) and twin-panel moonroof. The Ford also has a stowable shifter, making for a bigger workspace, and wireless charging.

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In the Rivian R1T Explore, which comes in at $67,500, buyers get the standard audio system, vegan leather heated seats and a heated steering wheel, a textile headliner and recycled floor mats. All R1Ts get a 12-inch driver cluster and 15-inch touchscreen display. It's beautiful, but takes some time to learn and some controls should just be physical. Tuning, climate and air vent direction are all adjusted through the screen in the Rivian.

The Adventure trim ($73,000) adds perforated vegan leather-wrapped seats with perforation, ventilated seats, wood finishes as opposed to matte black and Chilewich floormats.

Moving to the GMC Hummer EV ($110,595 for the Edition 1 model, with $80,000-$100,000 versions coming later), the centerpiece is the 13.4-inch touchscreen display, which is complemented by the 12.3-inch driver display. But the real star is the folding rear seat area that leads into more covered cargo space, before opening to the truck bed when even more space is needed for the longest cargo.

Cargo Space

These new pickups, with powertrains located in the floor, really excel when it comes to cargo space. Ford has its Mega Power Frunk that is watertight and has 14 cubic feet of space. That area can hold up to 400 pounds and it also features four 120-volt outlets and two USB ports.

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The Rivian's cargo party trick is the Gear Tunnel in between the bed and the cab. The pass-through dry storage space holds 11.6 cubic feet of stuff in an area that is the full width of the truck at 65 inches long. At that size, it fits skis, snowboards and pool cues. The R1T also has a front truck that measuring 11 cubic feet.

The Hummer EV, in addition to the clever rear storage area, also comes with a front trunk with 11.3 cubic feet of storage. This is the space normally occupied by the engine.

Of the three EV pickups, the F-150 Lightning's storage might be the smartest, but the Rivian's is more useful.

Bed Space

The final key component of truck storage is bed space. The GMC Hummer EV, as a hybrid truck/SUV, has a smaller bed volume than a traditional pickup. It measures 58.3 inches long at the top of box, has a 50.1-inch width between wheel wells along with a 21.7-inch height. That makes for 36.6 cubic feet of space, based on the generally agreed upon calculation for the statistic.

The Ford Lightning has a bed that's 67.1 inches long and 50.6 inches between the wheelhouses for a measurement of 52.8 cubic feet.

The Rivian is a little smaller than the Ford with a bed of only 54 inches. Rivian notes that the tailgate and the small panel that covers the gap between it and the bed are load bearing, which creates a continuous space of 83.6 inches. But, with the tailgate up its bed has a width of 50.3 inches with a total of 29.2 cubic feet.

As expected, the Ford offers the most traditionally trucklike space and volume. But both the Rivian and Hummer EV have their advantages for weirdly shaped cargo and cargo that needs to be protected in the cabin.

The F-150 will likely take the most traditional truck buyers, though data so far says its customers run the gamut. Like the Rivian and Hummer EV it is sold out for years to come.

The real battle begins once the early adopter syndrome wears off and the automakers compete on a level playing field once again.