Ford drops plans to work with Rivian on electric truck

First, Ford Motors, which plans to spend $4.5 billion to develop electric vehicles, said it was ending plans to work with California-based electric truck maker Rivian to build an all-electric work truck.

Now, a person close to the matter tells CNET that Ford also is scrapping plans to work with EV developer Rivian on hybrid pickup trucks.

That means Ford, which is working to develop more alternative vehicles, such as the new Bronco SUV that will be unveiled in 2020, and automakers developing trucks is also leaving the Rivian partnership.

A spokeswoman for Ford said in a statement Thursday that the company will end its collaboration with Rivian but did not elaborate on the reason. The spokeswoman did not address a question about why the company is no longer working with Rivian on hybrid trucks.

Ford and Rivian have worked together for some time. Ford invested $250 million in the EV maker, setting up a joint board and a $500 million joint research and development facility in Troy, Michigan.

Rivian has been working on an electric truck that would compete against the Mercedes-Benz Freightliner and Navistar International (NAV) Kenworth models.

Erik Coelingh, Rivian’s CEO, said in October that the company’s electric truck will have a range of 200 miles. “We feel that the limited range of trucks today is a real inconvenience for business,” he said at the time.

The talks with Ford have been closely watched. Musk tweeted in July that the automaker and other industry leaders were developing EVs at the “tipping point” and that they are “about to do a moon shot.”

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