RIVIAN LANDS AMAZON ORDER FOR 100,000 DELIVERY VEHICLES
The pressure on Rivian to nail the engineering, manufacturing and quality of its electric vehicles just got amped up - way up - with the news Thursday morning that Amazon has placed an order for 100,000 delivery vehicles from the suburban Detroit startup. Rivian spokeswoman Amy Mast said the first Amazon delivery vehicles are expected to be on the road in 2021. She said work on developing a delivery vehicle based on Rivian's battery-electric powertrain and chassis has been underway for some time.
The vehicle - most likely a van would use the same basic architecture and power electronics planned for the R1T electric pickup and the R1S electric SUV. But Mast said it will have a redesigned suspension system, a different interior and Amazon-specific application software.
Rivian has not built or sold its first vehicle yet, but the Plymouth, Mich.,startup is backed by at least $1.5 billion in recent investments from Amazon, Ford Motor Co. and Cox Automotive. Rivian is retooling the former Mitsubishi plant in Normal, Ill,. and expects to start production of the pickup and SUV next year.
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, at a press event in Washington on Thursday, said the Rivian order would help the giant online retailer meets its pledge to become net carbon neutral by 2040. Amazon's current delivery fleet uses internal combustion engines.
Mast said Rivian's goal is to have 10,000 of the electric delivery vehicles on the road by 2022. When all 100,000 vehicles are on the road it would prevent 4 million metric tons of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere each year.
VW'S HIGH-TECH BOMBSHELL
In a move that bucks the industry's general direction in vehicle development, Volkswagen Group has begun informing its global suppliers that they will be off the hook for almost all the software required to operate the advanced parts and technologies running through Volkswagen's cars. Volkswagen has decided to put itself on that hook.v
Source: Automotive News
NO-DEAL BREXIT WOULD BE 'DEVASTATING,' EUROPEAN CARMAKERS WARN
With under six weeks to go before the U.K. is scheduled to exit the European Union, automakers are warning that departing without a deal would have dire consequences for their industry. Over decades, Europe's carmakers have developed supply chains that depend on the smooth movement of goods across the bloc. Each vehicle is built from about 30,000 parts, many crossing borders...