Ford Will Develop New Vehicle Using Rivian’s Flexible EV Skateboard Platform; Invests $500M

Ford Motor Co. in Dearborn today announced an equity investment of $500 million in EV maker Rivian in Plymouth Township. In addition, the companies have agreed to work together to develop an all-new, next-generation battery electric vehicle for Ford’s EV portfolio using Rivian’s skateboard platform.
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R.J. Scaringe, Bill Ford
Ford has invested $500 million in Plymouth Township’s Rivian, which makes electric vehicles. From left: R.J. Scaringe, founder and CEO of Rivian; Bill Ford, executive chairman of Ford. // Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Co.

Ford Motor Co. in Dearborn today announced an equity investment of $500 million in EV maker Rivian in Plymouth Township. In addition, the companies have agreed to work together to develop an all-new, next-generation battery electric vehicle for Ford’s EV portfolio using Rivian’s skateboard platform.

Ford intends to develop a new vehicle using Rivian’s flexible skateboard platform. This is in addition to Ford’s existing plans to develop a portfolio of battery electric vehicles. As part of its previously announced $11 billion EV investment, Ford already has confirmed two key fully electric vehicles: a Mustang-inspired crossover coming in 2020 and a zero-emissions version of the F-150 pickup.

“This strategic partnership marks another key milestone in our drive to accelerate the transition to sustainable mobility,” says R.J. Scaringe, founder and CEO of Rivian. “Ford has a long-standing commitment to sustainability, with Bill Ford being one of the industry’s earliest advocates, and we are excited to use our technology to get more electric vehicles on the road.”

Bill Ford, executive chairman of Ford, says: “We are excited to invest in and partner with Rivian. I have gotten to know and respect R.J., and we share a common goal to create a sustainable future for our industry through innovation.”

In late 2020, Rivian plans to offer the five-passenger R1T pickup and seven-passenger R1S SUV. The company said each vehicle will deliver up to 400-plus miles of range and offer off-road capability.

“As we continue in our transformation of Ford with new forms of intelligent vehicles and propulsion, this partnership with Rivian brings a fresh approach to both,” says Jim Hackett, president and CEO of Ford. “At the same time, we believe Rivian can benefit from Ford’s industrial expertise and resources.”

As part of the deal, Rivian will remain an independent company. The investment is subject to customary regulatory approval. Following Ford’s investment, Joe Hinrichs, Ford’s president of Automotive, will join Rivian’s seven-member board.

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