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Tesla who? Top Ford exec says it's 'dominating' pickup truck market

Brian Sozzi
Editor-at-Large

Ford ( F ) expects to run over the competition in the budding electric pickup truck market.

“We have dominated this segment, it’s the best-selling truck for 42 years. We think combining Built Ford Tough with electrification exemplifies all of those attributes customers love. We want to build on the leadership we have had,” Ford Chief Product Development Officer Hau Thai-Tang said on Yahoo Finance’s The First Trade , when asked about Tesla’s upcoming entry into the electric pickup truck market.

Tesla is rumored to unveil its first electric pickup truck this summer. Outspoken Tesla CEO Elon Musk has hyped the coming release, saying in June the truck’s design will be cutting-edge and have more functionality than Ford’s iconic F-150. The expected price for Tesla’s first-ever pickup truck is seen to be around $50,000.

Meanwhile, upstart electric car maker Rivian plans to bring its highly touted pickup truck to market by 2021. Fortunately for Ford, it’s nicely aligned with Rivian — Ford invested $500 million in Rivian in April . Ford will use Rivian’s electric platform for an undisclosed electric vehicle as part of the tie-up.

“The pickup truck business is very competitive. Ford has dominated it. It’s a huge profit driver for us and we want to maintain that leadership and continue to build a moat around that business. We don’t take any of our competitors for granted, we have a lot of respect for all of them — we just want to focus on doing what we do well,” said Thai-Tang, never mentioning Tesla by name in the interview.

Thai-Tang confirmed to Yahoo Finance that Ford will have its first hybrid electric pickup truck on the market in 2020. A fully electric pickup truck is still a “couple years out,” Thai-Tang said.

That timeline hasn’t stopped Ford from a show of force on the good old innerwebs this week.

Ford dropped a video on YouTube Tuesday (see above) of a new all-electric pickup truck prototype pulling about 1 million pounds.

Now that’s Build Ford Tough.

Brian Sozzi is an editor-at-large and co-host of The First Trade at Yahoo Finance. Follow him on Twitter @BrianSozzi

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