Lincoln-Rivian EV Project Cancelled

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
lincoln rivian ev project cancelled

Rivian and Ford Motor Co. are nixing plans to deliver a jointly developed Lincoln EV. Despite Lincoln President Joy Falotico saying the model would deliver one of the most tranquil and luxurious driving experiences on the planet back in January, Lincoln told dealers on Tuesday that development would be scrapped.

Ford invested $500 million in Rivian last year. The collaborative project was intended to deliver a high-end, battery driven vehicle built on the “skateboard” platform underpinning Rivian’s R1T pickup and R1S SUV. Had the project not been taken behind the shed and shot this week, an assumed mid-size Lincoln crossover would have arrived in 2022.

Official reasons given for the cancellation thus far include naming the coronavirus pandemic and shrugging.

According to Automotive News, the rationale issued to dealers was simply the “current environment.” When pressed for clarification, Ford said that it remains committed to the EV startup and ensuring that electric vehicles are added to Lincoln’s lineup. It also noted it still wants to use Rivian’s skateboard platform on another vehicle.

Why it can’t be the vehicle initially planned is up for debate. While the health/economic crisis has certainly delayed a number of product launches, this is the first outright product cancellation we’ve seen.

From Automotive News:

The Bronco Sport, an Escape-sized off-roader, will start rolling off assembly lines at Ford’s Hermosillo, Mexico, plant on Sept. 7, nearly 60 days after the original July 13 target, according to supplier information obtained by Automotive News.

It’s unclear how the virus has impacted other vehicles, including the upcoming Bronco SUV, F-150 pickup and Mustang Mach-E crossover.

Ford CEO Jim Hackett, speaking last month on a Detroit radio station, said the virus was not likely to have a significant impact on the launch of some of Ford’s biggest models.

“It’s had an effect, but it’s not going to dampen our spirits about how all these great new things have to come to market,” Hackett said. “If they’re a month or six weeks late, I don’t think anyone would think we fumbled there because of the virus.”

Before we place all of the blame on Ford, Rivian has also had to delay production of its own products on account of the coronavirus. In April, spokesperson Amy Mast said the brand’s product launch would have to be pushed back until 2021. With no “skateboard” to build a Lincoln body atop of, Ford may have simply not liked the shape of things and pulled off to ask itself the $500-million question of how it intends to work around that. Cash burned during the automaker’s production shutdown, combined with virus-stricken sales, can’t be ruled out as a motivating factor for shelving the project.

[Image: Ford Motor Co.]

Join the conversation
2 of 26 comments
  • Dwford Dwford on Apr 29, 2020

    This "current environment" rap doesn't hold much water for a vehicle that wasn't going to be released for 2 more years. So they barely started on it, and now it's cancelled.

  • ToolGuy ToolGuy on Apr 29, 2020

    "When we don't keep a promise to someone, it communicates to that person that we don't value him or her. We have chosen to put something else ahead of our commitment. Even when we break small promises, others learn that they cannot count on us. Tiny fissures develop in our relationships marked by broken promises."

  • Lou_BC ERay? A southern model will be the BillyRay.
  • Lou_BC I've never used a car buying plan service. My Costco membership did get me 1,000 cash back on my last truck.
  • Jeff S I can understand 8 cars is a bit much unless you are a serious collector. I always loved the Challenger when it first came out and now. I don't need a car like this but I am glad it exists at least for 1 more year. If I had a choice between a Mustang, a Camaro, and a Challenger I would opt for a Challenger but probably with a V-6 since it has more than enough power for most and I don't need to be burning rubber. Challenger has the classic muscle car looks, more cabin room, and a decent size trunk which makes it very livable for day to day driving and for traveling. The base models of the Dodge Challenger has a 3.6-liter V6 engine that gives you 305 horsepower with 268 lb-ft torque. The car attains 60 mph from a standstill within just 6 seconds, which is quite fast. Even with their base engines, the Challenger and Camaro are lightning-fast. The Camaro reaches 165 mph, while the Challenger can go up to 11 mph faster!
  • Inside Looking Out I would avoid American cities if I can. European cities are created for humans and Americans for cars.
  • Inside Looking Out I used True car once in 2014 and got a great deal. The difference is that you do nothing but dealers call you. No haggling but you can get the same deal browsing inventories on dealers websites. It just matter of convenience, Rich people delegate job to someone else because time costs more.