Ford to Use VW Electric Vehicle Platform in Europe, Truck Collaboration on Track

Chad Kirchner
by Chad Kirchner
ford to use vw electric vehicle platform in europe truck collaboration on track

Developing electric cars for scale in Europe takes time, money, resources and commitment. Volkswagen has the new, advanced MEB architecture designed just for that purpose. There are other automakers, though, who need to have an option. For Ford, that answer was simple. They already are working with VW on several projects, so it makes sense to expand that relationship into platform sharing.

In an announcement that also included VW’s investment into Argo AI, Volkswagen committed to providing 600,000 MEB units to Ford for a new electric vehicle that’ll be manufactured and sold within Europe. That includes all of the electric components, according to Dr. Herbert Diess, VW’s CEO. Ford’s CEO Jim Hackett said that it would be “built Ford proud.”

Both executives confirmed that they are working on a second agreement to provide more of these units to Ford for a second vehicle that is in the pipeline, though they were both limited on details for that product — other than they are in the planning stages.

The MEB platform is versatile. It works as high-volume city cars all the way up to camper vans. Hackett mentioned that the MEB vehicles that Ford produces will be “suited for European roads.” Customers in Europe expect a certain feel from the cars they buy that is different than what people in the United States do, so it makes sense to build a vehicle for that market there that is also tailored for it.

The first EV, a crossover, goes on sale in 2023.

Both executives confirmed that plans are still on track for building commercial vehicles and trucks for select global markets. Those markets include Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Asia Pacific and South America. The first vehicle of this joint project could be on the road as early as 2022.

Volkswagen’s investment in Argo ($2.6 billion in capital and assets), along with Ford’s existing investments, makes Argo AI a “technology platform company,” and they are working hard to develop and test autonomous systems. But, before all of that, VW and Ford’s relationship grows stronger with new products hitting the streets soon.

[Image: Ford]

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  • ToolGuy ToolGuy on Jul 14, 2019

    What could possibly go wrong?

  • Akear Akear on Jul 14, 2019

    This is the new American way, which is to let other countries do the hard core engineering and design. After that just slap your name on the foreign designed product.

  • Lou_BC "They are the worst kind of partisan - the kind that loves their team more than they want to know the truth."Ummm...yeah....Kinda like birtherism, 2020 election stolen, vast voter fraud, he can have top secret documents at Mar-lago, he's a savvy business man, and hundreds more.
  • FreedMike This article fails to mention that Toyota is also investing heavily in solid state battery tech - which would solve a lot of inherent EV problems - and plans to deploy it soon. https://insideevs.com/news/598046/toyota-global-leader-solid-state-batery-patents/Of course, Toyota being Toyota, it will use the tech in hybrids first, which is smart - that will give them the chance to iron out the wrinkles, so to speak. But having said that, I’m with Toyota here - I’m not sold on an all EV future happening anytime soon. But clearly the market share for these vehicles has nowhere to go but up; how far up depends mainly on charging availability. And whether Toyota’s competitors are all in is debatable. Plenty of bet-hedging is going on among makers in the North American market.
  • Jeff S I am not against EVs but I completely understand Toyota's position. As for Greenpeace putting Toyota at the bottom of their environmental list is more drama. A good hybrid uses less gas, is cleaner than most other ICE, and is more affordable than most EVs. Prius has proven longevity and low maintenance cost. Having had a hybrid Maverick since April and averaging 40 to 50 mpg in city driving it has been smooth driving and very economical. Ford also has very good hybrids and some of the earlier Escapes are still going strong at 300k miles. The only thing I would have liked in my hybrid Maverick would be a plug in but it didn't come with it. If Toyota made a plug in hybrid compact pickup like the Maverick it would sell well. I would consider an EV in the future but price, battery technology, and infrastructure has to advance and improve. I don't buy a vehicle based on the recommendation of Greenpeace, as a status symbol, or peer pressure. I buy a vehicle on what best needs my needs and that I actually like.
  • Mobes Kind of a weird thing that probably only bothers me, but when you see someone driving a car with ball joints clearly about to fail. I really don't want to be around a car with massive negative camber that's not intentional.
  • Jeff S How reliable are Audi? Seems the Mazda, CRV, and Rav4 in the higher trim would not only be a better value but would be more reliable in the long term. Interior wise and the overall package the Mazda would be the best choice.
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