In an effort to outflank Tesla, GM and Ford are working to design very different new versions of their most profitable pickup truck models with the replacement of engines that are fueled by petroleum with batteries. As it stands, the Chevrolet Silverado of GM and the F-150 pickup of Ford are the top-selling vehicles in the U.S. market, Reuters reported.
Ford Chairman Bill Ford recently told the news outlet, “This is going to be a real watershed for the whole industry.” While the automaker hasn’t made many details known about the electric F-series, Bill Ford reportedly hinted that the truck could have space that is load-carrying under the hood beyond a traditional bed in the back.
GM and Ford have more reasons than one to try out electric pickups. (The report, however, noted that some industry executives and analysts say the concept could be a small niche.) Electric pickups could aid GM and Ford in making notable sales of electric vehicles (EVs) that they will have to meet stricter emission standards as well as electric vehicle mandate in California as well as other states.
While the Trump administration is said to be working to roll back those standards, electric trucks are a hedge if California wins. The electric truck by Ford will be created on an EV platform distinct from the vehicles to be offered later on a Rivian platform. Ford has reportedly said it will debut a hybrid F-150 in 2020. Bill Ford reportedly noted that the all-electric F-150 “won’t be too far after that.”
In separate news, Electric vehicle automaker Rivian has announced it took in a $350 million investment from global car services company Cox Automotive. The companies said in a statement that in addition to the investment, they will both “explore partnership opportunities in service operations, logistics and digital retailing.”
Rivian Founder and CEO RJ Scaringe said the partnership should bolster the firm’s ability to bring services to customers per prior reports.