The Ford F-150 Lightning is preparing to enter its third model year of production, and following a tumultuous launch where initial consumer demand exceeded the automaker’s production capacity for the EV pickup, things have begun to settle down a bit. FoMoCo recently ramped up F-150 Lightning significantly, but over the next few years, it’s set to face a host of new competition including, most notably, the Chevy Silverado EV. However, Ford Authority recently spotted The Blue Oval benchmarking something that isn’t sold in the U.S. – at least right now – the Great Wall Motors Pao EV pickup.
Ford engineers were recently benchmarking the Great Wall Motors Pao alongside multiple variations of the Ford F-150 Lighting at its Dearborn Development Grounds. Most notably, this marks the very first time that we’ve seen this Chinese pickup in the U.S., which was being evaluated alongside an Audi e-tron, Tesla Model Y, and Hyundai Ioniq 5. This particular Great Wall Pao is finished in base trim, and was later seen in downtown Dearborn, Michigan, which is where some of these photos were taken.
The Pao is a mid-size all-electric pickup that’s powered by a single electric motor generating 150 kW (208 horsepower), and offers up 405 kilometers (252 miles) of range. While it isn’t a direct competitor to the Ford F-150 Lightning, it is worth noting that the latter model isn’t currently sold in EV-happy China, where Blue Oval CEO Jim Farley recently noted that the automaker needs to “reboot” its business, plans that include exporting more existing models and building them there rather than creating new ones that cater to Chinese customers.
Regardless, this is by no means the first time Ford Authority has spotted FoMoCo benchmarking a rival’s EV as it continues to invest heavily in that particular segment. Thus far, we’ve spotted the automaker evaluating a Tesla Model Y Performance, Hyundai Ioniq 5, Audi e-tron, and another Chinese EV called the Zeekr 001, which will soon be available in Europe, but isn’t currently sold in the U.S.