Ford Motor Company and Volkswagen AG today announced they are expanding their global alliance to include electric vehicles – and will collaborate with Argo AI to introduce autonomous vehicle technology in the U.S. and Europe – positioning both companies to better serve customers while improving their competitiveness and cost and capital efficiencies.
The points includes:
- Volkswagen to join Ford in investing in Argo AI, the autonomous vehicle platform company, at a valuation of more than $7 billion. Tie-up allows both automakers to independently integrate Argo AI’s self-driving system into their own vehicles, delivering significant global scale
- Ford will use Volkswagen’s electric vehicle architecture and Modular Electric Toolkit (MEB) to design and build at least one high-volume fully electric vehicle in Europe for European customers starting in 2023, more efficiently advancing its promise to deliver expressive passenger cars while taking advantage of Volkswagen’s scale
- Ford and VW on track to develop commercial vans and medium pickups for each brand in select global markets starting in 2022; sharing development costs to generate significant synergies
- The Volkswagen-Ford global alliance – which does not involve cross-ownership between the companies – is expected to create annual efficiencies for each company
Company leaders also announced Ford will become the first additional automaker to use Volkswagen’s dedicated electric vehicle architecture and Modular Electric Toolkit – or MEB – to deliver a high-volume zero-emission vehicle in Europe starting in 2023.
Ford expects to deliver more than 600,000 European vehicles using the MEB architecture over six years, with a second all-new Ford model for European customers under discussion. This supports Ford’s European strategy, which involves continuing to play on its strengths – including commercial vehicles, compelling crossovers and imported iconic vehicles such as Mustang and Explorer.
Volkswagen started developing its MEB architecture in 2016, investing approximately $7 billion in this platform. The car-maker is planning to use this platform to build approximately 15 million cars for the Volkswagen Group alone in the next decade.