Ford is no longer planning to build an electric car with electric car startup Rivian, CEO Jim Farley told Automotive News.
The Detroit automaker originally announced that it wanted to build an electric car with Rivian in 2019 when it made its first investment of $500 million in the startup.
Ford and Rivian canceled a car they planned to build for the luxury Lincoln brand in 2020. One of the reasons Farley gave for canceling the collaboration with the electric car startup was the complexity of combining Rivian’s architecture with Ford’s own software.
“Comparing today to when we originally made this investment, a lot has changed about our capability and the direction of the brand in both cases,” Farley said. It is now certain that we have more to do. We want to invest in Rivian but at this point, we are developing our own cars.
Ford expects to become the second largest maker of electric vehicles in the country within two years. She no longer believed she needed Rivian’s help to do so.
According to Rivian, the decision to scrap the electric car was joint. “As Ford expands its electric vehicle strategy and demand for Rivian vehicles increases, we have decided jointly to focus on our projects and deliveries,” a spokeswoman said. Our relationship with Ford is an important part of our journey, and it remains an investor and ally on our shared path to an electric future.
The automaker made its initial investment in Rivian seven months before the Mustang Mach-E was revealed, and just over two years before the F-150 Lightning was revealed. But it had notable early success with these electric vehicles.
It built more than 50,000 vehicles, which it plans to build in 2021, the first full year of production for the Mach-E Mustang. F-150 Lightning orders are approaching 200,000 vehicles.
Rivian says the decision was shared with Ford
Farley also explained that the company plans to double the number of electric vehicles it manufactures globally by the end of 2023 to 600,000.
In September, the company announced plans to build two new battery factories in Kentucky and a massive headquarters in Tennessee that makes batteries and electric cars.
Meanwhile, Rivian has begun shipping its R1T electric pickup truck. It aims to ship the R1S electric SUV by the end of the year.
She also works on electric delivery trucks for Amazon, which is also investing heavily in the startup.
The startup was recently announced in one of the largest IPOs. It raised about $12 billion in the process. As a result, Ford’s 12 percent stake in Rivian is now worth more than $10 billion.
Ford helped Rivian get here, as was recently revealed in the startup’s stock exchange filings.
The Detroit automaker built the chassis for the Rivian prototypes. It agreed to supply certain components of the vehicle, including related engineering and tools for the entire R1 family.
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