When Ford unveiled the F-150 Lightning last year, the new electric pickup truck promised to power houses during outages. On Tuesday, Ford put out a press release explaining the backup power feature in a bit more detail.

Called Intelligent Backup Power, the feature allows a Lightning to discharge power when needed but only with extra Ford power systems. Using the 80-amp Ford Charge Station Pro, a Lightning with the larger 131-kwh extended-range battery can discharge power at up to 9.6 kw, according to Ford. However, utilizing that power also requires customers to purchase the Home Integration System, which includes a power inverter, dark start battery, and a transfer switch enabling bidirectional power flow.

Based on average United States home electricity usage of 30 kwh per day, Ford estimates that an F-150 Lightning can provide full power to use for three days, or up to 10 days with supplementary solar power or electricity rationing.

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Intelligent Backup Power

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Intelligent Backup Power

Ford is partnering with Sunrun for installations of both the Charge Station Pro and Home Integration System. The charging station is included with the extended-range Lightning; buyers of the standard-range version can purchase the charging station and pay for activation separately, Ford said. Customers will have to purchase the Home Integration System through Sunrun. It's scheduled to start sales this spring.

Ford plans to add more charging features for Lightning customers after launch such as Ford Intelligent Power, which is different than the "Backup Power" feature. Plain old Intelligent Power will allow customers to power their houses with their trucks when electricity rates are high, and charge when rates are low, the automaker said.

Lightning deliveries are scheduled to begin this spring, with pricing starting at $39,974. Pre-production began in late 2021, and Ford has already announced plans to double annual production to 150,000 units in response to demand.