ggreeneva

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I can't say this comes as a great surprise, after the departure of Ford-affiliated folks from the company's board.

https://www.autonews.com/automakers-suppliers/ford-rivian-cancel-plans-jointly-develop-ev

Ford, Rivian cancel plans to jointly develop an EV
Ford expects to become the nation's second-biggest EV producer in two years, and it no longer thinks it needs Rivian's help to do that.

November 19, 2021

DETROIT — After going public this month, electric-vehicle startup Rivian Automotive is worth almost 50 percent more than one of its early big investors: Ford Motor Co.

But Ford believes it can soon add more value for shareholders than at any point in the past century with a plan to become the nation's second-biggest producer of EVs in two years. And Ford no longer thinks it needs Rivian's help to get there.

The two companies have scrapped plans to jointly develop an EV, Ford CEO Jim Farley told Automotive News. Ford already had canceled a planned Lincoln collaboration at the start of the coronavirus pandemic but still intended to work with Rivian on a different vehicle until recently.

"Right now, we have growing confidence in our ability to win in the electric space," Farley said in an interview Thursday. "When you compare today with when we originally made that investment, so much has changed: about our ability, about the brand's direction in both cases, and now it's more certain to us what we have to do. We want to invest in Rivian — we love their future as a company — but at this point we're going to develop our own vehicles."

Ford is so confident in its abilities that it's doubling its planned EV production capacity to 600,000 globally by the end of 2023, Farley said. The company aims to become the largest U.S. EV maker after Tesla in the same time frame, Farley said, and to challenge Tesla's leadership after planned EV campuses in Tennessee and Kentucky come online several years later.

The electric push is part of a broader remake of the 118-year-old automaker that involves modernizing how it sells vehicles, reconfiguring pieces of its supply chain and expanding into software services that will generate recurring revenue.

"As a leader of Ford I get really excited, because there hasn't been a chance to transform Ford and create this much value since we scaled the Model T," Farley said. "The chance to emerge out of this transition to a digital product with a much higher valuation is now much clearer."

Rivian relationship
Farley admitted he has had "mixed emotions" watching Tesla, Rivian and Lucid surpass Ford's valuation, though he said Rivian is unique because Ford has a rooting interest in its success. Ford invested $500 million as part of the companies' 2019 agreement — later increasing the amount to $1.2 billion — and until recently had a seat on Rivian's board.

Through Rivian's Nov. 10 public stock offering, the value of Ford's stake has grown tenfold.

"Rivian's a special case for us; it's kind of like a brother or a sister, since we're an investor," Farley said. "We know [CEO RJ Scaringe] and the company really well."

Farley said the companies' relationship has not soured, calling it "some of the best cooperation we've had with another company."

Rivian, in a statement, said the companies "mutually decided to focus on our own projects and deliveries" as demand for each of their EVs has grown. "Our relationship with Ford is an important part of our journey," Rivian said, "and Ford remains an investor and ally on our shared path to an electrified future."

One factor Farley cited in the decision is the complexity that would be required to marry another company's electric architecture with embedded software developed in-house by Ford.

"We have slightly different business models," he said. "We like what they're doing, but we're going to go our separate ways."

More batteries needed
Ford's EV ambitions hinge around battery capacity, another area in which it recently changed course — pivoting from sourcing batteries from suppliers to making them in-house.

The automaker in September announced plans for three new battery plants that would raise its U.S. production capacity to roughly 129 gigawatt hours annually. Farley said that's still not enough and Ford will need additional plants.

"Already we need more than we planned," he said. "I'm not going to give you a number, but it's very clear we'll have to move soon, and it will be more."

Farley said Ford can squelch Wall Street skepticism of traditional automakers' ability to compete in the EV space with newer entrants such as Tesla or Rivian by reaching its ambitious production goals in the next 24 months.

"We're different from these other companies in that we have three hits on our hands," Farley said, referring to the Mustang Mach-E crossover, E-Transit van and upcoming F-150 Lightning pickup. "We need to be No. 2 in the U.S. in electric sales, and we need to make money on those products. If we do those two things, Ford will be in a different situation, and I believe the narrative will be different."

Supply chain changes
As Ford builds more electric and connected vehicles, Farley said it will need to rethink its supply chain. It's getting practice at that as a result of the semiconductor shortage.
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Sgt Beavis

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Ford realized that the EV market was VASTLY larger than they had ever anticipated. Putting that market into the hands of a very small, very new, very unproven, manufacturer is very risky. With the advent of the Mach-E, Ford realized that they can actually build a pretty damn good EV. The MME is certainly better than anything GM has built to date and it's very competitive with the Tesla Model Y. The F150 Lightning looks to be a huge success before the first one has gone "Job 1". So there really isn't any reason for Ford to partner with Rivian on any projects.

Now Ford is sitting on BILLIONS of dollars from their Rivian investment. Those billions are going to be extremely useful in building new battery plants and retooling existing plants for BEV production. Ford helped Rivian get its start in manufacturing and now Ford will make a killing on its relatively small investment.
 

jjswan33

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Ford doesn't need Rivian, Ford already has more electric vehicle in customer hand then Rivian currently.
I think that Rivian also doesn't need to build vehicles for Ford. They will be better off building vehicles for their own customers long term.
 

ja_kub_sz

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Ford doesn't need Rivian to build EV's that'll sit on dealer lots waiting for people to buy them at a heavy discount.

Don't get me wrong, but Ford is looking at quantity not quality, and they've been known to build a lot of vehicles that don't offer anything of substance (former F-150 owner). They see the EV space as being wide open for them to litter with "40k" optionless work trucks that go 200 miles and can't tow. That's not a demand item, nor a branding strategy, it's just Ford being Ford.

They see they can sell a bunch of lesser electric trucks and its just a numbers game for them (the most sales), but mark my words those trucks aren't gonna be the sought after vehicles consumer buyers wait for or will do anything for the Ford brand as a whole. You're local public works building will be lined with electric Fords, but that isn't gonna make Ford great again.

That's the sad part with the big three... They don't want to really invest in innovative and quality products (minis the C8), but they sure want to sell a bunch of whatever to whomever.

Mustang Mach E's anyone? They're already collecting dust out by me.

Screenshot_20211118-171540.png
 

E.S.

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Um. this was well known since the days Ford cancelled their joint development venture with Lincoln. Why is this being brought up again?
 

manitou202

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Ford doesn't need Rivian to build EV's that'll sit on dealer lots waiting for people to buy them at a heavy discount.

Don't get me wrong, but Ford is looking at quantity not quality, and they've been known to build a lot of vehicles that don't offer anything of substance (former F-150 owner). They see the EV space as being wide open for them to litter with "40k" optionless work trucks that go 200 miles and can't tow. That's not a demand item, nor a branding strategy, it's just Ford being Ford.

They see they can sell a bunch of lesser electric trucks and its just a numbers game for them (the most sales), but mark my words those trucks aren't gonna be the sought after vehicles consumer buyers wait for or will do anything for the Ford brand as a whole. You're local public works building will be lined with electric Fords, but that isn't gonna make Ford great again.

That's the sad part with the big three... They don't want to really invest in innovative and quality products (minis the C8), but they sure want to sell a bunch of whatever to whomever.

Mustang Mach E's anyone? They're already collecting dust out by me.

Screenshot_20211118-171540.png
Unfortunately most dealerships show all incoming vehicles as being available on their site. But I can guarantee that all of the Mach-Es listed are custom orders. Ford has a 6 month backlog of new Mach-E orders. The one Mach-E I managed to find available (cancelled order) they were asking $10k+ over MSRP.

The Mach-E is doing quite well.
 

ja_kub_sz

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Unfortunately most dealerships show all incoming vehicles as being available on their site. But I can guarantee that all of the Mach-Es listed are custom orders. Ford has a 6 month backlog of new Mach-E orders. The one Mach-E I managed to find available (cancelled order) they were asking $10k+ over MSRP.

The Mach-E is doing quite well.
These vehicles are already being disocunted $500 off MSRP.

Again, I like the Mach-E, but the R1T is just more for your money all around.

Screenshot_20211119-172338.png
 
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manitou202

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These vehicles are already being disocunted $500 off MSRP.

Again, I like the Mach-E, but the R1T is just more for your money all around.

Screenshot_20211119-172338.png
So one available at a $500 discount is a bunch of Mach-Es collecting dust?
 

PastyPilgrim

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It definitely makes sense and seems like a good thing for both parties. Rivian got what they wanted (initial funding and push from an established player to help their IPO) and Ford got what they wanted (lots of money and insight/motivation/etc. into EVs).

At this point, Rivian no longer needs Ford's business or money and Ford no longer needs Rivian to prop up what they probably once considered a side project.

They'll continue having a strong relationship since Ford owns a chunk of Rivian, and if the lightning is trash and Ford needs to buy EV parts/tech/software/etc. then Rivian will be their first choice to buy from, and if Rivian continues to struggle to produce and needs more funding then Ford will be on their shortlist (after Amazon most likely).
 

slawwach

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Agree. If a Mach E is worth $56k, I'll gladly spend $76k for a Rivian.
Personally I doubt many of us, if anyone, will get Rivian for the price that is advertised at the moment. Not really related to Mach-E in any way, just a side note ;).
 

ironpig

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Ford doesn't need Rivian and Rivian doesn't need Ford. Ford already has a great electric offering with the Mach E and they have competing products with their electric Cargo Van and F-150 Lightning.

I'll be happy if both companies are very successful with their EV products. It's a win win for consumers.
 

ja_kub_sz

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Meanwhile on the West Coast...
1637369496552.png
That is the GT though. 😎

Anyone else find it kinda strange how this supposed "Amazon truck range shortage" and the reposting of the Ford Rivian EV partnership rehash story are coming right on top of each other?

Just seems kinda coincidental to me that's all.

The Ford Rivian split was only announced 18 months ago.
 
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