Ford Releases the CarPlay Update F-150 Lightning Owners Have Been Drooling Over

Ford has just made the announcement that every F-150 Lightning owner has been waiting for: the update that enables Apple Maps EV routing in the truck is now live.
F-150 Lightning with EV routing 6 photos
Photo: Bogdan Popa/autoevolution/Ford
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Apple Maps EV routing was announced in 2020, but the feature made its way to the first vehicle two years later. Ford pioneered its adoption by bringing EV routing to the Mustang Mach-E.

Evidence that the carmaker was planning to expand the availability to more vehicles was discovered earlier this year, and Ford started the rollout to the first F-150 Lightning trucks in October. The new functionality was included in software version 6.3, though based on owner reports, only a few eventually received the update.

Getting the latest software update has long been challenging for F-150 Lightning owners, as many customers are still running old releases. As a result, the majority of trucks are still running 6.0 or 6.1, so they didn't receive the highly anticipated update with Apple Maps EV routing.

Ford says the new update is now available for all trucks, recommending customers to keep automatic updates activated. Once the new version is ready for your truck, the vehicle should automatically download and install it.

Apple Maps EV routing is a feature that allows drivers to get additional navigation information when running CarPlay. The feature connects to the vehicle to check the battery charge and try to estimate if you need an extra charge before arriving at the destination. If you do, the application searches for charging stations along the route based on the vehicle profile (charging port and other compatibility specifications). All these options are available directly from the infotainment screen via Apple Maps when CarPlay is running.

Google Maps offers similar capabilities as part of the Android Automotive feature package, allowing drivers to get personalized routes that include charging stops based on the battery charge when beginning the journey.

Apple is working around the clock on turning Apple Maps into a better Google Maps alternative. iOS 17, the latest major iPhone update, includes support for offline maps, allowing drivers to navigate without an Internet connection. Similar functionality is also available in Google Maps, but Apple Maps supports more transportation modes, including transit.

Meanwhile, the adoption of new-generation features like EV routing remains scarce. Apple likely failed to convince major carmakers to embrace the feature, possibly as it bets big on the new-generation CarPlay integration. A new CarPlay version is due this year, with the first models running it expected in 2024.

The new CarPlay will support additional functionality compared to the current version and will use all dashboard screens to display content. It'll also align with the iPhone UI, using widgets to provide easy access to essential information, such as calendar appointments pulled from the smartphone.
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About the author: Bogdan Popa
Bogdan Popa profile photo

Bogdan keeps an eye on how technology is taking over the car world. His long-term goals are buying an 18-wheeler because he needs more space for his kid’s toys, and convincing Google and Apple that Android Auto and CarPlay deserve at least as much attention as their phones.
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