Ford announced last Friday (19) that it will end its partnership with Rivian to manufacture electric cars. In an interview with Automotive News website, the CEO of the American automaker, Jim Farley, attributed the dissolution to a change of direction in the company's productivity, which aims to manufacture 600 thousand electric vehicles per year until 2023.
“Right now, we have growing confidence in our ability to win in the electricity sector,” Farley said of the decision. "When you compare today's moment with the time when we made that investment [in the partnership with Rivian, in 2019], a lot has changed, our capacity, the brand direction in both companies, and now it's more right for us what we should do.”
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Even with the end of the partnership, Ford will continue to invest in Rivian. The problem, in Farley's view, was adapting the startup's car architecture to the Detroit automaker. "We have slightly different business models," said the executive. "We like what they're doing, but we'll go our separate ways."
Rivian drops to 6th on the list of most valued automakers
With the announcement of the separation, Rivian's shares plummeted more than 8% on Nasdaq — and the startup, which until recently was the third most valued automaker in the world, fell to the sixth place on the list. In a press release, the Delaware company thanked Ford for the partnership, calling the relationship "an important part of the journey." “We decided to focus on our projects as soon as Ford scaled up its production of electric vehicles and demand for Rivian vehicles grew,” says the text.
The partnership between Ford and Rivian began in 2019, when the Detroit automaker invested around US$ 500 million (at the time around R$ 2 billion) in the electric car startup — also sponsored by Amazon, by the way. The idea was to produce an electric car with the Lincoln brand the following year, but the Covid-19 pandemic made the project unfeasible. Two months ago, Rivian became the first company to have an electric pickup truck, the R1T.
Image: Phillip Lange/Shutterstock
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