Back in 2019, Ford made a $500 million investment in Rivian and announced that the brands would team up to build a Lincoln-branded luxury EV. But two years later, the companies say that a collaborative EV is totally off the table. What’s the problem?
Maybe that’s the wrong question—Ford and Rivian are doing great on their own, which is the main reason they’ve decided to cancel their collaborative EV. The Ford Mach-E and F-150 Lightning EVs have completely smashed sales expectations, and as you may know, Rivian set new records with its IPO last week (the company is worth over a trillion dollars and has only manufactured a handful of cars).
When two companies are doing so well within their own space, there’s just no need for a collaboration. And as Ford CEO Jim Farley explained to Automotive News, this success can actually make working together more difficult. Ford and Rivian have each developed their own unique EV technologies and software, and combining such different elements would require a ton of money and time.
Ford is still a major investor and supporter in Rivian, of course. In a statement to The Verge, Rivian spokesperson Miranda Jimenez said that “our relationship with Ford is an important part of our journey, and Ford remains an investor and ally on our shared path to an electrified future.”
It’s odd to see two companies play nice in the emerging electric car market. Ford isn’t just a major (and early) Rivian investor—it also provided frames and other key components for Rivian’s prototype vehicles and continually praises the scrappy startup at public events. (I just hope the companies don’t merge.)