Faraday Future will help Fiat-Chrysler give the battle of Tesla and VWDecember 4, 2019
Poor startup Faraday Future, which can not start production, found a powerful and unexpected partner. If everything goes well, Tesla and Volkswagen will have a very serious competitor.
Fiat-Chrysler (FCA) is discussing a partnership in the field of electric vehicles with startup Faraday Future. And, according to Electrek, this combination has the ability to turn this industry around. According to Verge, close cooperation has already been established between the companies: in particular, “trucks” and FF power plants have already been installed on a number of FCA models and are tested in real conditions.
Potentially, such an alliance is very beneficial for both parties, the only question is how to make cooperation the most effective – and dangerous for competitors.
FCA pretty much delayed with the development of its own electric vehicles. Now the only electrified model is the plug-in hybrid Chrysler Pacifica. In addition, in Europe, a new $ 800 million production line will eventually begin production of the EV version of the Fiat 500. But this small car is clearly not for the US market. In the US, the concern announced its intention to re-equip five factories in Michigan, investing $ 4.5 billion in it, but the leaders did not go into details.
Perhaps this is just a chance to switch to EV with the help of Faraday Future technologies, whose factory in California does not come to life for serial production.
Two quotes from FF executives are interesting. At the Los Angeles auto show, company head Carsten Breitfeld confidently called his powerplant “the best in the industry.” And the engineer working at the startup Pete Savagian commented on the publications that followed, recalling that she’s been called the “best” since January 2017. Simply put, for FF this is a chance to finally show their achievements to buyers of production cars, rather than the hypothetical FF91 for $ 290,000.
There is one more factor. FCA is in the process of merging with Peugeot, which will create the fourth largest car concern in the world in terms of sales. The combined company should be headed by Carlos Tavares.
Some observers compare the top manager with the leaders of startups from Silicon Valley in terms of his attitude to risks: he is ready to accept them if he sees a benefit.
Recently, Tavares is not particularly outspoken with the media, and in particular on the topic of clean future vehicles. But in an interview with Bloomberg a couple of years ago, he was determined to electrify Fiat and Chrysler. Then he said that by the end of 2020 hybrids and honest EVs in the line will be 50%, and by 2024 – all 80%. The first indicator is hardly achievable, but you can catch the second cutoff in theory – and buying a startup will seriously accelerate progress.
Ford, one of the main competitors of FCA, is also not limited to its own achievements: in late November, the management announced the use of the electric power plant created by the Rivian startup for the Lincoln brand.
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