Another day, another story of dealers looking for ways to gouge as much money as possible out of Ford F-150 Lightning customers. Markups and price change shenanigans are well documented at this point, but now we’re learning of a unique no-resale condition some dealers are placing on the trucks.
Carscoops confirmed details of the policy with Ford. The automaker noted that dealers requested the change, but the practice is still subject to local laws, and dealers are not required to implement the policy. With the truck’s popularity, dealers don’t want to leave any money on the table, so buyers flipping their new electric pickup for way more money is bad news.
Ford’s communication with dealers offered language to create the policy: “Purchaser hereby agrees that it will not sell, offer to sell, or otherwise transfer any ownership interest in the Vehicle prior to the first anniversary of the date hereof. Purchaser further agrees that Seller may seek injunctive relief to prevent the transfer of the title of the Vehicle or demand payment from Purchase of all value received as consideration for the sale or transfer.”
Early this year, Ford warned dealers to stop the foolishness with markups and price games for reservation holders and offered support for no-sale provisions at that time. Now that trucks are arriving in showrooms and reaching customers, dealers reached out for more control over the situation. Ford left the details of how and where the policy is implemented to its franchisees. They can create a standalone contract for the no-sale agreement or integrate it into existing paperwork. It's not unlike the no-resale policy on Ford GTs.
A crowdsourced spreadsheet of Lightning markups on Reddit showed upcharges that range from $1,500 to $10,000, but we’ve recently seen crazy numbers. A Florida dealer slapped a $69,554 markup on one truck, effectively doubling its price, so the pain is real and can be extreme for people really wanting to buy a new electric truck. Ford threatened to withhold future vehicle allocation for the practice, but some still require extra money to hold a reservation, and there are still markups on trucks across the country.
The trucks are sold out for all but the lucky few that were able to place an early reservation, so there’s plenty of demand and motivation to take advantage of people desperate to get behind the wheel. Even so, the practice of markups and limiting what customers can do with a vehicle they paid for is terrible for everyone but dealers.
Unlike assets like luxury watches and real estate, cars don’t typically increase in value, especially new mass-produced models like the F-150 Lightning. Buying a truck with even a $10,000 markup sets the buyer up to be underwater immediately, so it’s best to be patient and get on a reservation list if you’re looking for a new electric pickup.