It will be at least a year before Ford's new F-150 Lightning electric pickup will be available to buyers. That's not stopping folks from talking about pricing, financing, and availability. To that end, the team at Cars Direct is covering all the bases.

There's no question that Ford rocked the EV world by announcing its full-size, AWD, quad-cab Lightning would start under $40,000. In fact, we did our own research on various electric vehicle tax credits and found the Lightning could be purchased for under $30,000 in some states. Of course, we all know how automakers love to tout base-price vehicles when realistically, they're nearly impossible to find. That could hold true for Lightning, according to a Cars Direct report.

The F-150 Lightning Pro is the base model that starts for $39,974. Its primary mission is that of a work truck, aimed at commercial and fleet buyers. That's not to say the average Joe can't buy one, but as is often the case with no-option entry-level models, production is typically low because buyers prefer a bit more panache in their new car. The base-model Lightning Pros that are built will be scooped up by commercial and fleet purchasers, meaning folks will likely need to special order a truck to get that rock-bottom price.

Here's where things potentially get even more complicated. Ford will offer an extended-range Lightning Pro that adds both the maximum range of 300 miles, and the maximum output of 563 horsepower for a $10,000 bump in price. That takes the price tag to $50,000, which still is easily in the realm for many F-150 shoppers. However, another Cars Direct report states this version of the Lightning Pro will only be sold to commercial buyers and won't be available to the general public.

If that's the case, the only way to get an F-150 Lightning with full range and power will be to nix the base model completely and go with an XLT. That trim starts at $52,974, though it's unclear if it comes with the extended range and full power as part of the package. If it's not – and the add-on is the same $10,000 upgrade as seen on Lightning Pro – buyers could be looking at a minimum of over $60,000 to get an electric F-150 with the maximum range and power advertised by Ford.

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Perhaps that's why the Blue Oval will reportedly offer its Ford Options Plan for the Lightning. In short, it's something of a fusion between standard financing and leasing where the buyer has lower monthly payments compared to a typical finance plan. The final payment is then a large balloon payment, or if the buyer chooses, the vehicle can be returned to Ford Credit. Ford currently offers this on the Mustang Mach-E and Cars Direct reports it will be offered on the Lightning as well.

Gallery: 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning

Of course, there's still plenty of time for all this to change. We're less than a week out from the F-150 Lightning's debut and still a year away from first deliveries to customers. That is, provided there aren't additional production delays due to COVID-19, computer chip shortages, or any other global hiccups that could wreak further havoc on manufacturing.

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