Electric vehicle startup company Rivian has announced a $500 million investment from Ford Motor Company. In addition to the equity investment, the two companies have agreed to form a partnership and jointly develop a Ford battery-electric vehicle using Rivian’s skateboard platform.
“This strategic partnership marks another key milestone in our drive to accelerate the transition to sustainable mobility,” said RJ Scaringe, Rivian founder and CEO. “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.”
Rivian has currently developed two vehicles on its skateboard platform. The five-passenger R1T pickup and seven-passenger R1S SUV are estimated to deliver up to 400 miles of range and give buyers an unmatched combination of performance, off-road capability and utility, starting in late 2020.
Ford says it will develop a new vehicle based on Rivian’s skateboard platform and that the vehicle will be in addition to the company’s previously-announced electrification plans. Ford has already committed to investing $11 billion into electrification and confirmed it will roll out a Mustang inspired battery-electric SUV and zero-emissions variant of the Ford F-150.
Rivian will remain an independent company as part of the partnership, though Ford says Joe Hinrichs, Ford’s president of Automotive, will join Rivian’s seven-member board of directors.
The investment is still subject to regulatory approval.