Economy

Ford Invests $500M In Tesla Rival

Ford Invests $500M In Tesla Rival

Ford said the co-developed vehicle would be in addition to the portfolio of EVs it is planning as part of an $11 billion investment in electrification through 2022.

The tie-up is another sign that automakers and tech companies are pairing up to share the huge capital costs of developing electric vehicles and even those that drive themselves.

On a conference call with reporters and analysts, neither company would disclose what Ford vehicle would be built off the Rivian underpinnings, which the company calls its "skateboard platform".

"At the same time, we believe Rivian can benefit from Ford's industrial expertise and resources", Hackett noted.

Rivian will remain an independent company and this is a "minority investment", but Joe Hinrichs, Ford's president of automotive, will join Rivian's seven-member board, the two companies confirmed. While the two companies discussed GM buying an equity stake in Rivian, the negotiations reached an impasse and appear to have collapsed, Bloomberg News reported earlier.

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"We are excited to invest in and partner with Rivian", said Bill Ford, Ford's executive chairman, in a release. Today, Rivian announced that Ford has invested $500 million in the EV maker. The investment is subject to customary regulatory approval. Rivian has developed a range of electric cars created to focus on the great outdoors - a Tesla for the outward bound, if you will.

The Associated Press reports that Rivian has facilities outside of Detroit in San Jose and Irvine, California, and Surrey, England.

Manufacturing of these vehicles will take place at Rivian's plant in Normal, Illinois with customer deliveries pegged for late 2020. Production of the R1S and R1T is scheduled to begin in 2020, though you can preorder them now with a $1,000 deposit.

Ford Motor Company is a global company based in Dearborn, Michigan.

In March, VW and Ford signed a deal to develop mid-size pickup trucks and are continuing discussions about extending the alliance to include electric and autonomous vehicles and mobility services. The company now employs about 20 people at an office in Novi.