Most of the electric pickup trucks due out in the early 2020s list an onboard power outlet on their specifications sheet. Ford will prove enabling this feature doesn’t require a lithium-ion battery pack, by adding a generator to the next-generation F-150 expected to make its debut in time for the 2021 model year, according to a recent report.

Anonymous sources familiar with Ford’s plans told Muscle Car & Trucks an onboard generator will be one of the next F-150’s extra-cost options. We don’t know how much it will cost yet, or which trim levels it will be offered on, but it’s believed to be available on gasoline-powered and hybrid variants of the truck. Similarly, it’s too early to tell if it will draw the electricity it dispenses from a separate battery, or if users will need to keep the engine idling.

We haven’t seen the next F-150 in the metal yet, as its unveiling has been pushed back, but our spies have spotted several prototypes undergoing shakedown testing and none seem to have an exterior flap that could hide a power outlet. It’s unlikely to be inside the truck, so it’s probably in one of the cargo box’s inner panels.

Adding this feature to America’s bestselling vehicle makes sense. It will let owners power their tools and toys (like electric saws and air compressors) even if they’re miles away from the nearest outlet. It’s not unreasonable to assume that, if the rumor is accurate, arch rivals Chevrolet and Ram will add a generator to their trucks, too.

Coronavirus-related stay-at-home orders have delayed the next-generation F-150’s launch. We expect Ford will introduce it in the coming months. It will start taking orders on July 15, according to a recent report, and production is now tentatively scheduled to start in October. An electric version — which could let users draw electricity from its battery pack to run power equipment — will join the range later.

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