Future Hyundai and Kia electric vehicles will use a ‘skateboard’ platform developed by US start-up Canoo, with the car manufacturers hoping the collaboration will help them offer more competitively priced EVs.
Canoo is a Los Angeles-based electric vehicle manufacturer, which works on a subscription sales model. However, its proprietary product is a ‘skateboard’ electric vehicle platform that incorporates the batteries and powertrain, and can be adapted for different body shapes and sizes.
What makes it unique is that the firm has integrated many of the key components to fulfil as many functions as possible, which reduces the size, weight and cost of the platform. This is what Hyundai Motor Group is interested in, saying the collaboration will “allow for a simplified and standardised development process for Hyundai and Kia electrified vehicles, which is expected to help reduce cost that can be passed along to consumers”.
Albert Biermann, head of research and development at Hyundai Motor Group, said: “We were highly impressed by the speed and efficiency in which Canoo developed their innovative EV architecture, making them the perfect engineering partner for us as we transition to become a frontrunner in the future mobility industry.
“We will collaborate with Canoo engineers to develop a cost-effective Hyundai platform concept that is autonomous ready and suitable for mass adoption.”
Ulrich Kranz, boss of Canoo, added: “We have been working diligently to develop a bold new electric vehicle and partnering with a global leader like Hyundai is a validating moment for our young company. It is a real honour for us to help Hyundai explore EV architecture concepts for their future models.”
Last month, Hyundai Motor Group invested €100 million (circa £84bn) in UK-based EV start-up Arrival, with the goal of introducing ‘competitively priced small and medium-sized vans and other products for logistics and on-demand ride-hailing and shuttle service companies’.