When Ford announced its big $500 million investment in Rivian back in April of this year, it left to the imagination what uses the auto giant might have in mind for the vehicle platform being developed by the nascent EV company. Rumours were bound to sprout up.
Nearly nine months later, reports are starting to give an indication where Ford is headed. A new report by Reuters cites reliable sources who affirm that Ford intends to use the architecture being developed by Rivian to produce an electric SUV under the Lincoln banner.
The Rivian platform was first showcased at about this time last year, at the 2018 edition of the Los Angeles Auto Show. The company unveiled there the R1S SUV and the R1T pickup. Production of these two all-electric models is set to get underway at the end of 2020. The vehicles are expected to get a 180-kWh battery pack, which could translate into as much as 700 hp. In addition, they could get a range of around 600 km. All of this remains to be confirmed, but it certainly explains Ford’s interest in the company.
As for Lincoln, according to Reuter’s source the luxury company is working on two other electric SUVs. A compact SUV is planned for late 2021 or early 2022, while a midsize model is in the works for 2023.
One of the models will be built at the Ford’s Flat Rock plant, south of Detroit in Michigan. That facility is currently being updated to make it into a central hub for assembly of electric vehicles and for development of automated-drive technologies.
Ford also plans to use the Volkswagen Group’s MEB architecture to produce at least one electric model, and possibly more, and it’s working as well on its own structures. One of them made its public debut last week in fact, underpinning the brand-new Mustang Mach-E SUV.
And then there’s the electric Ford F-150 pickup also in the works.
Read the above and try to deny that the next decade is going to be a transformative one for the automotive industry.