Any time there’s a hot new vehicle on the market, there will be people looking to make a quick buck, whether it’s dealers price-gouging customers, or early buyers who are only in it to flip the vehicle for a tidy profit. With roughly 200,000 reservations already on the books and a waitlist about 3 years long, the pure-electric F-150 Lightning is a prime target.
But Ford is prepared to tackle would-be F-150 Lightning scalpers head-on, relying on its dealer network for enforcement. According to a memo sent out to US dealers, which was shared on the F-150 Gen 14 forums last Friday but has since been removed, Ford is asking dealers to pack a special clause into every F-150 Lightning sale that would bar the new owner from selling the electric pickup truck for at least one year after taking delivery. The agreement between Ford and its dealers to include the clause is completely voluntary; dealers aren’t being compelled to include the “no-sale” provision, and can choose to opt out.
Ford F-150 Lightning Price Gougers: Dealer Memo Warns Of Punishment To Early Sellers
The clause asks the F-150 Lightning buyer to agree to “not sell, offer to sell or otherwise transfer ownership interest in the Vehicle prior to the first anniversary of the date hereof” – in other words, the vehicle delivery date. Should a buyer violate the agreement, the dealer “may seek injunctive relief to prevent the transfer of title… or demand payment from Purchaser of all value received.”
You’ll recall that Ford did something similar with the rare, coveted second-generation Ford GT supercar, making buyers agree not to resell the car for at least two years. Violations of that clause resulted in several lawsuits, including one brought against actor and former WWE superstar John Cena. But that agreement was between the buyer and Ford Motor Company; it’s unclear whether politely asking dealers to enforce a similar policy with the F-150 Lightning will be anywhere near as successful.
But that’s not all Ford is doing to try to keep people from making a quick buck on its new F-150 Lightning. In the memo, the automaker said it is also taking action against a number of dealerships guilty of price-gouging by requiring prospective Lightning buyers to make extra deposits or payments, violating sales and service agreements in the name of “market adjustments”. The automaker said such actions are “damaging the Ford Motor Company brand,” not to mention the reputation of its dealer network, and could result in the redirection of a dealer’s entire 2022 F-150 Lightning allocation.
Tough, but fair.