In a deal that connects Ford with an electric vehicle startup, the automaker is investing $500 million in Rivian Automotive Inc. The company, which is the second-biggest automaker in the country and produces the F-Series pickup line, is also creating a partnership with the upstart electric vehicle firm, Bloomberg reported.
Joe Hinrichs, Ford’s automotive president, said per the outlet, “We don’t have all the answers and we don’t pretend to.” Hinrichs continued, “We can learn a lot from Rivian.” Ford reportedly plans to bring a vehicle to its lineup that would be created using what Rivian calls its “skateboard.”
In addition, by 2022, Ford plans to bring 40 electrified vehicles to market such as a battery-powered crossover vehicle that is inspired by the Mustang. And the company plans to bring a gas-electric hybrid to market in 2020 of its F-150 truck and reportedly has indicated that it would release a truck in an all-electric version.
The news comes after news surfaced that Rivian Automotive LLC notched a $700 million equity investment led by Amazon following the unveiling of its electric vehicle concepts last year. Rivian Automotive LLC Chief Executive Officer Robert J. Scaringe said before a Feb. 15 announcement, according to reports, “We will bring on additional partners, but less because of capital reasons and more because of a need to have strategic relationships as we scale toward our broader vision.”
As it stands, the company’s R1T pickup and R1S sport utility vehicles reportedly had outstanding reviews at November’s Los Angeles Auto Show, and it is said they could have a driving range as high as 400 miles. At the time, it was also reported that self-driving car technology company Aurora had notched upwards of $530 million in a Series B financing round led by Sequoia Capital, with a large investment from T. Rowe Price Associates as well as Amazon.