Esports

Ford F-150 gets added to Rocket League to compete in virtual soccer matches

The Ford F-150 Rocket League Edition will soon be aviallbe to download.

Photo courtesy of Ford Motor COmpany
On the virtual track or street. That's where you'll usually find dream cars, Baja bombers, and concepts that have yet to see the light of day on the road IRL. The new generation of Ford F-150 recently made its way to America's driveways but now a virtual version is taking a different gaming path - to the pitch.

Ford has partnered with video game maker Psyonix to create a new virtual version of America's best-selling pickup truck. It is featured in the Rocket League multiplayer video game where vehciles take center stage and compete in soccer matches.

The Ford F-150 Rocket League Edition will be available as an in-game purchase Feb. 20-28. The F-150 bundle also includes a chairman decal, two sets of F-150 wheels, F-150 Rocket League Edition engine audio, F-150 boost, and F-150 player banner.

Ford F-150 Rocket League Edition

Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

The animated version of the truck carries over the real world styling of the typical F-150 you'd see on the road. It has C-clamp headlight design, rounded wheel arches, drop-down windows, and 'F-150' stamped in the tailgate.

"It had to be an F-150 but one that fits within Psyonix' extreme virtual world pairing soccer and mayhem," said Ehab Kaoud, chief designer, Ford trucks. "F-150 is already the most popular truck in the real world, and this F-150 Rocket League Edition is poised to be the most popular truck in the gaming world, too. It's Built Ford Tough meets gaming."

The Rocket League partnership isn't Ford's first foray into esports. The automaker recently designed a virtual race car based on decisions that were made by fans on Twitter. The Ford design team then created a the Team Fordzilla car as a concept in its studio.

Additionally, soon Ford will produce commercial shorts narrated by actor Bryan Cranston aimed at gamers.

Ford isn't the only company getting into the esports realm. Bugatti, Lamborghini, Jaguar, Mazda, and Chevrolet have also joined the gaming world. Honda recently debuted a next-gen Civic prototype via Twitch, a streaming platform heavily utilized by the gaming community.

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Lincoln will not make a performance variant to compete with Cadillac.

Lincoln

TheLincoln Navigator and Cadillac Escalade have been duking it out at the top of luxury SUV rankings for decades, but there’s one area of the Caddy’s development that Lincoln won’t touch. In a recent interview, a company executive told Ford Authority that it has no plans to create a performance variant of the Navigator to compete with the upcoming Escalade V from Cadillac.

2022 Lincoln NavigatorThe new Navigator features several upscale touches and excellent tech. Lincoln

That means the Navigator will stick with the powertrain it’s carried for years, which is a twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine that makes 440 horsepower and 510 pound-feet of torque. It’s paired with a smooth ten-speed automatic and either rear- or four-wheel drive. While there’s more than enough power to get the hulking Lincoln moving, it’s not a powertrain that inspires excitement or engagement, and though beefy, it’s tuned much more for comfort and quietness than drama.

Though more than adequate, those specs are a far cry from the numbers we expect from the Escalade V. The full-size bruiser from Cadillac is expected to get a supercharged 6.2-liter V8, similar to the unit seen in the CT5-V Blackwing and Chevrolet Camaro ZL1. We don’t know power numbers yet, but the engine should deliver horsepower and torque numbers in the high 600s.

Cadillac Escalade VThe Escalade V will be massively powerful. Cadillac

That Lincoln is taking a different approach isn’t surprising. The automaker has already announced its intention to go all-electric, so pouring more time and resources into creating a performance gas-powered SUV isn’t in line with its goals. Company executives have also expressed a desire to avoid imitating rivals, so the decision to leave a performance Navigator behind is not surprising.

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First-year Ford F-150 Lightning production numbers doubled
Ford

Ford has begun serial production of the new F-150 Lightning electric pickup truck, marking what could be one of the most important days in recent automotive history. The first trucks rolled off the assembly line at Ford's Rouge Electric Vehicle Center in Michigan today, so America's best-selling truck has finally gone electric. Ford wants to sell two million EVs per year by 2026 and have half of its global sales volume to be electric by 2030.

Ford F-150 LightningPast meets future: Ford's new electric pickup will be the F-150 Lightningautomotivemap.com

Ford has seen extreme demand for the trucks, with 200,000 reservations since the books opened. To deliver, the automaker plans to increase production to an annual rate of 150,000 units by next year, which involved huge investments in the Rouge Center and created hundreds of jobs. Ford's total investment for the F-150 Lightning crests $1 billion across Michigan alone, and has created 1,700 jobs across various facilities in the state.

Ford F-150 LightningThe first production trucks left the factory today.
Ford Motor Company

Though the Lightning starts around $40,000, the most mainstream models will cost much more than that. The F-150 Lightning Pro, while affordable, is a stripped-down truck intended for commercial buyers. It's still a forward-looking electric truck with amazing capabilities, but it lacks much of the creature comforts and features that everyday drivers expect. Higher trims get the latest driver assistance features, including BlueCruise, which is Ford's semi-autonomous hands-free driving assistant. A 12-inch touchscreen is standard, along with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, navigation, a Wi-Fi hotspot, and more.

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