Even Amazon is involved. This could get interesting.
Last week we learned General Motors is in the early stages of developing an all-electric pickup truck. Its cross-town rival, Ford, is already actively prepping an all-electric F-150. But electric vehicles and the related technologies take years to prep, and GM doesn’t have time to waste.
According to Reuters, GM is in talks with Amazon to invest in Rivian Automotive, builder of the R1T all-electric pickup truck. If the deal is signed, both GM and Amazon would take minority stakes in Michigan-based Rivian, which has a stated goal of being the first company to sell an electric pickup truck in the US.
It’s possible a deal could be announced later this month, assuming negotiations go well. There was another report on this topic, this time from CleanTechnica, claiming GM was holding talks with Tesla about a possible partnership with its Chevrolet division. We reached out to Chevy to see what’s going on but the automaker refused to comment. But GM is much more open about its potential deal with Rivian.
"We admire Rivian’s contribution to a future of zero emissions and an all-electric future,” GM said via email to Reuters. No other details were provided. Both Amazon and Rivian also refused to comment. We honestly don’t see a world where GM and Tesla join forces for future models, especially given Tesla’s history of going it alone.
Rivian, however, we could see happen. Its founder and CEO, R.J. Scaringe, describes the R1T truck’s platform as a "skateboard” because of the way it packages all essential systems below wheel height, such as the battery pack, suspension, and brakes, for better stability and lower center of gravity. He’s also been more vocal about working with partners to advance self-driving technology – and that’s where GM and Amazon may see an opening. GM needs to move fast with an EV truck and Rivian is close to having one ready. At the same time, GM and Amazon have made major autonomous driving technology progress. See where this is heading?
Although GM is on a "path to an all-electric future,” according to CEO Mary Barra, it remains to be seen whether it’ll bring Rivian along for the ride.