Ford just rolled out a new Ranger pickup truck, Edge crossover, and Bullitt Mustang here at the North American International Auto Show, all of which were either rumored or expected. But the company teased something totally out of the blue at the very end of its press conference: an all-electric performance SUV called the “Mach 1” that will hit the road in 2020.
Ford didn’t offer any details about the Mach 1’s performance or show what it will look like. The company simply rolled a short teaser video about the project, which showed a Mustang and an Explorer pull into a building just before a (fake) bolt of lightning strikes. The garage doors come back up, but the video cuts before anything is revealed.
Instead of offering any answers, Ford executive Jim Farley teased the Mach 1 with a handful of questions. “What happens when this,” he asked before the roar of an internal combustion engine played on stage, “meets an e-racer acceleration?” Another: “Can a battery electric vehicle stir the soul?”
Tesla’s pretty much the only company in the game with an all-electric performance car at the moment. But the market could change dramatically by the time the Mach 1 is released. Porsche is launching the Mission E in 2019, and is reportedly working on a performance EV platform that other VW Group companies will be able to use. Jaguar is supposed to release a production version of the all-electric I-Pace SUV concept in late 2018. And plenty of startups and boutique car companies are trying to take push performance EVs out the door, too.
That Ford is working on a similar idea shouldn’t come as a surprise, but that doesn’t mean we’re not excited to see what they’re cooking up.
Update January 14th, 5:54PM ET: Ford has clarified in subsequent tweets that the Mach 1 will be an SUV. This story has been updated.