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F-150 Lightning frunk: From cardboard cutout out to reality


Though a “frunk” has been around for a while in gasoline-engined vehicles such as the Porsche 911 and the Volkswagen Beetle, the front-trunk abbreviation didn’t really go mainstream until the recent onslaught of engine-less electric vehicles. And Ford Motor Company is doing its part to help make this funky word  common jargon with its F-150 Lightning.

Many, though not all, EVs have a frunk. And the 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning doesn’t just have a frunk it has what the Blue Oval calls a Mega Power Frunk. I don’t know why, but when I hear that, I think each word should be bolded with exclamation marks after each word.  (MEGA! POWER! FRUNK!)

Ford released a video highlighting how the Mega Power Frunk came to be and explained why the versatility it offers is unlike anything offered in any other pickup truck.

Low-fidelity prototype

Leave it to engineers to come up with a term like low-fidelity prototype. In the video, Greg Ardisana, Design Strategy Director, F-150 Lightning Frunk, said the concept for the Mega Power Frunk started as a low-fidelity prototype.

What exactly does that mean? It’s basically a compact, arts-and-crafts-like project made of cardboard and hot glue.

Steve McInally was the Frunk Feature Supervisor, and though it sounds fake, this really was his job title. He said having the low-fidelity prototype enabled them to get the concept in front of customers easily. With it, they were able to solicit feedback from potential customers.

What would they want from such a space? What would they want to put in it? And thus, from a cardboard box, the Mega Power Frunk in the F-150 Lightning was born

“Not having an engine bay gave us a clean canvas and a new opportunity,” McInally said.

Ardisana said many future products from Ford will use these low-fi prototypes and that it will have a major impact on the product line.

What are the specs of the F-150 Lightning frunk?

Ford seems to like the number 4 for the Mega Power Frunk as it has 400 liters of volume and 400 pounds of payload. Additionally there are four 120-volt AC Pro Power Onboard electrical outlets and two USBs.

McInally believes anything from power tools to laptops to TVs and iPhones will be plugged in to the frunk’s outlets. There’s even a one-way drain plug in the water friendly frunk.

Ardisana said what many people might not realize as a major perk for the Mega Power Frunk is the bumper-height opening combined with the powered waterfall hood. What this means is: It’s easy to access the interior space. Plus, the hood rises up easily and can be opened from either the remote key fob, an exterior button or from inside the vehicle.

The bottom line the F-150 Lightning frunk

Frunks in EVs aren’t guaranteed or uniform. For example, the Volkswagen ID.4 doesn’t have one and the Mustang Mach-E only has a small one. But as the EV market expands and develops, Ford is wise to pay close attention to this useful bonus space, adding even more functionality to it’s newest F-Series pickup truck.

The story of how it came to be, from nothing more than cardboard and hot glue is interesting. Something so cutting edge, started in such a rudimentary way.

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Jimmy Dinsmore

Jimmy is News Editor for PickupTruckTalk with an expertise in new vehicles. He is also a Ford Mustang historian having authored the book Mustang by Design (available on Amazon). His second book, about the history of Ford's F-Series truck comes out next year.

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