Ford, Volkswagen Form Global Alliance Following Market Slow Down
Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance might be the first one to do it, but who says Ford and Volkswagen won’t follow their footsteps? According to a press release made by both companies this week, the two automotive giants are “leveraging their strengths to better compete, innovate and serve their customers.”
This worldwide tie-up will focus on building pickup trucks, commercial vans, and (possibly) electric and autonomous vehicles. Their first plan is to build a pickup truck and a van as early as 2022, followed by commercial vans in Europe, and delivery van and pickup agreements “with scale and efficiency” starting 2023.
Both companies will not require cross-ownership, unlike Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi. Each will maintain their independence, without any merger or equity stakes involved.
“The fundamental shift is healthy”
According to Autoblog.com, the strategic collaboration is set to save the car makers billions of dollars. The recent car market slow down due to trade frictions between United States and China have prompted many car manufacturers to slow down, including Ford and Volkswagen.
The alliance, which has been rumored since last summer, is also seen as a way to expand their line-up. Technology is also changing the automotive industry, with many major automakers shifting to electric vehicles and autonomous technology. Many manufacturers are also toying with the idea of new mobility services, like shared fleets of cars, bikes, and scooters.
“It’s my opinion that you can’t do this alone,” Ford CEO Jim Hackett said during a press call with The Verge. “We believe the fundamental shift is healthy, as it allows automakers to focus on their respective strengths and participate in developing these new mobility solutions, yet at the same time for our customers, offer many competitive options that they didn’t think they might get from automotive companies.”