For many a driver, leasing a vehicle rather than buying it outright can be appealing. The fact that most automakers let you purchase a vehicle once your lease is up adds another wrinkle into the proceedings — but if you’ve fallen in love with a particular car or truck, it makes sense to have that as an option. You get to keep the vehicle you’ve gotten used to, the car manufacturer gets a significant amount of money — it’s a win-win for everyone.
A recent announcement from Ford suggests big changes on the horizon, however. As Autoblog reports, Ford has announced that it’s getting rid of the ability of leaseholders to purchase their electric vehicles once their lease period is up.
An article at CarsDirect has more information on the planned changes. According to a letter that Ford Credit sent to dealers, it’s requesting that all electric vehicles be returned to dealers when the terms of the lease end. These changes are set to affect drivers looking to lease the Mustang Mach-E, E-Transit and F-150 Lightning.
Why is Ford taking this step? According to their letter, it has to do with carbon neutrality. “The purchase of the BEV Lease is to aid in our goal of delivering carbon neutrality by 2050 by controlling the vehicle battery through its life, keeping it in the Ford network,” Ford wrote in the letter.
It’s a significant move by Ford, and one that speaks to a larger issue in the world of EVs as well — namely, what the best course of action is to take with old EV batteries. It’s a debate that we’re likely to return to soon.