Hyundai and Kia plan to invest €100 million ($111 million) in UK-based Arrival, and to work with the EV startup to develop new vehicles.
Arrival has sold its electric delivery trucks, which are native EVs – not conversions of ICE vehicles – to the Royal Mail and UPS.
“Arrival, Hyundai, and Kia will use Arrival’s flexible skateboard platforms and technologies to create new purpose-built electric vehicles across multiple vehicle categories,” Hyundai announced. “Hyundai and Kia will leverage Arrival’s novel microfactories and software innovation while Arrival will benefit from the OEM’s global footprint and economies of scale. This will help accelerate the ‘Two Track’ strategy adopted by Hyundai, to bring zero-emissions battery and fuel cell technologies to the commercial vehicle market.”
Arrival has yet to build a production vehicle, and no details of its powertrain have been made public. The company says it will start testing prototypes in the UK early this year, and begin production in 2021. Hyundai has not mentioned a timeline for its collaboration with Arrival, but did note that the startup would be able to take advantage of the giant automaker’s mass production expertise.
However, Arrival may have a more streamlined production strategy in mind. The company says its vehicles “are assembled using small footprint microfactories, located in areas of demand and profitable at thousands of units,” and that one of these “microfactories” can be brought into production in three months.
Sources: Hyundai, Electrek, Forbes