INTERNATIONAL – Volkswagen and Ford Motor on Tuesday set an alliance that combined forces on commercial vans and pickups and said they were exploring expanding into joint development of electric and self-driving technology, actions meant to save the automakers billions of dollars.
Ford and VW announced their partnership against the backdrop of the Detroit auto show. The partnership, which starts with sales of vans and medium-sized pickups in 2022, will not involve a merger or equity stakes, the companies said.
VW and Ford said they also are exploring potential collaboration on electric vehicles, autonomous vehicles and mobility services.
The two automakers explored closer co-operation as trade frictions force carmakers to rethink where they build vehicles for Europe, the US and China.
The expanding alliance highlights the growing pressure on all global automakers to manage the costs of developing electric and self-driving vehicles, as well as technology required to meet tougher emissions standards for millions of internal combustion vehicles they will sell in the years to come.