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Ford’s selling electric crate motors based on the one in the Mach-E

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For retrofits and custom builds, like this one-off 1978 F-100 pickup

Ford has started selling an electric crate motor based on the one that powers the GT version of the Mustang Mach-E. The “Eluminator e-crate motor” makes 281 horsepower, 317 pound-feet of torque, and costs $3,900.

The motor is just the first in a series of EV building blocks Ford says it plans to sell, like battery systems, motor controllers, and inverters, all of which would make it easier to retrofit internal combustion engine vehicles with all-electric drivetrains. Right now, those types of conversions are still mostly limited to specialty shops and hobbyists who often cobble together parts from all sorts of random places in the supply chain.

To promote the new motor, Ford built a one-off all-electric version of a 1978 F-100 pickup truck, which it brought to the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) trade show in Las Vegas. It’s an annual showcase for aftermarket suppliers and custom builders, but it’s increasingly become a place for automakers to tease some wild ideas in the electric vehicle space — like when Ford brought an all-electric Mustang with a six-speed manual gearbox to the show in 2019, two weeks before the debut of the Mach-E.

The electric F-100 has two of the e-crate motors for a total of 480 horsepower and 634 pound-feet of torque — the same as the top spec Mustang Mach-E GT Performance — all wrapped in classic Ford truck styling. The inside also borrows from the Mach-E, as the truck has the same 15-inch portrait touchscreen on the dashboard, as well as the same 10.2-inch driver display. The electric F-100 even has a front trunk under the hood.

It’s a gorgeous blend of old and new, and it’s too bad it’s a one-off. But as Ford follows through on its promise to bring more electric drivetrain components to market, it will open the door to more custom builds and retrofits in this same style. There’s already been plenty of awesome creations despite the cost and effort currently required.