Ford has canceled its electric vehicle (EV) plans with Rivian with regards to a fully electric Lincoln SUV. Last year, Ford invested $500 million in Rivian. As a part of that investment, they planned to develop an EV that used Rivian’s battery pack and electric motor setup. The vehicle would be in the Lincoln lineup, and thus considered a luxury EV. Ford also participated in a $1.3 billion fundraising round for Rivian.
Lincoln still plans to work closely with Rivian to create an “alternative vehicle” that will be based on Rivian’s electric vehicle skateboard platform. How this is very different from the initial plans is a tad unclear. Lincoln also declined to say exactly how the COVID-19 pandemic affected them to the point of cancellation.
This was a decision that was mutually made by Lincoln and Rivian given the rapidly changing environment and after a review of product plans. “As we moved through the development cycle, we determined that it would be better to pivot from the Rivian’s skateboard platform and focus our development efforts on Lincoln’s own fully electric vehicle.”
Also, Alexandra Ford English, daughter of Ford Chairman Bill Ford, will be joining Rivian’s board. “With Alexandra’s experience in mobility and self-driving services, she will bring a unique perspective to Rivian’s board,” Ford Chief Executive, Jim Hackett, said in a statement from the company.
COVID-19 has forced many people and businesses alike to change the way they do things. Ford closed most of its North American production plants indefinitely, citing the COVID-19 crisis.
Hopefully, this friendship between Rivian and Ford will grow stronger despite the challenges. We need more EVs on the road.