Electric Ford F-150 might be available with bed-mounted gas range extender

Ford has filed a patent application for what appears to be a bed-mounted gasoline range extender for electric pickup trucks. While an electric Ford F-150 is scheduled to go on sale in mid-2022, it’s unclear if it will get this feature.

First spotted by The Drive, the application is for “electrified vehicles with removable and interchangeable range-extending generators.” It was submitted to the United States Patent and Trademark Office in April 2018, and published on September 15.

Drawings accompanying the patent applications show a box-shaped generator unit—containing a small engine, fuel tank, control electronics and exhaust system—that would go in the bed of a pickup truck. The generator would plug into the truck using connectors similar to those used for charging stations.

Automakers often file patent applications to protect ideas they have no intention of using in the near term, and that may be the case here.

“We submit

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We drive and compare the 1949, 1970, and 1977 Volkswagens all of these years later.

LOS ANGELES—The first air-cooled Volkswagen Beetle was imported into the U.S. in 1949 and the last in 1979. Park a ’49 Type One VW Beetle next to a ’79 Super Beetle and they look pretty darn similar, but nearly everything under the skin is different, from the transmission to the suspension to the stuffing in the seats. How different is the driving experience between the first and last air-cooled Beetles? With the help of Volkswagen of America and the Ventura Vintage Volkswagens club, I had the opportunity to find out.

I drove a ’49 Volkswagen Beetle from VW’s heritage collection back-to-back with a 1970 standard Beetle and a 1977 Super Beetle convertible. Before comparing, though, I had to get thoroughly versed in the ways of the ’49—and the learning curve turned out to be much steeper than I imagined.

Getting to Know the 1949 Volkswagen Beetle

Our 1949 Volkswagen

Read More View More We drive and compare the 1949, 1970, and 1977 Volkswagens all of these years later.