Family learns the hard way that they’d be better off to spit on their asses and slide than relying on a coal-powered EV for their transportation needs.
Family ditches electric truck on drive from Winnipeg to Chicago after charging troubles
Road trip completed with rented gas-powered vehicle, while Ford says charging infrastructure is improving
The owner of a 2023 Ford F-150 Lightning Lariat with an extended-range battery regrets buying the electric truck after attempting a road trip, only to abandon it and finish the drive with a gas-powered rental vehicle.
Dalbir Bala of La Salle, Man., left the truck in Minnesota last month after he said he tried unsuccessfully to charge the battery at two different charging stations.
“It was really a nightmare frustration for us,” Bala said.
He bought the truck — which is advertised as having a range of 515 kilometres — for $115,000 in January. He spent an additional $16,000 installing chargers at his home and his trucking business, and upgrading his residential electrical panel.
Bala, his wife and three kids left on a trip to visit Wisconsin Dells, Wis., and Chicago for business, on July 27. The truck was fully charged when they left their home just south of Winnipeg, and Bala had plans to stop at level 3 charging stations, which provide faster charges, located along the planned route.
Bala’s first stop was about 350 kilometres south of Winnipeg in Fargo, N.D. He paid $56 to charge his vehicle’s battery from 10 per cent up to 90 per cent.
The trouble started at his next stop in Albertville, Minn., where Bala said the only fast charger brought up a faulty connection message in his truck when he plugged in. He called the number on the charger for help but never got a response.
He headed to another charging station in nearby Elk River, Minn., but a charger there wouldn’t work either, he said.
With only 15 kilometres remaining on his battery and no fast charger within that range, he decided to ditch his Lightning. Bala got it towed to a Ford dealership and the family rented a gas-powered Toyota 4Runner to finish their trip to Chicago.
A nightmare indeed. The ultimate lesson here was expressed in a great movie from many years ago:
There’s another great old movie clip that is quite apropos to this sad story.