Ford is scheduled to debut a Mustang-inspired electric performance SUV next year, followed by an electric F-150, a model built through a $500 million partnership with startup electric vehicle outfit Rivian and its own modular zero-emissions that should spawn several auto and utility models.
The transitions to electric and self-driving vehicles, as well as the production volumes, were uncertain, said Ford Automotive President Joe Hinrichs at a news briefing on Friday in NY.
Analysts at Citi said Ford licensing Volkswagen's MEB platform is a "transformational" step for both companies.
Ford also will build an electric auto in Europe using VW's MEB electric vehicle platform, the companies said.
Diess said Ford would pay VW "set by set" for the use of VW's electric vehicle components, and that revenue from those Ford vehicles over six years could reach $10 billion. $1 billion will come from funding, while the remaining $1.6 billion will come in the form of VW's Autonomous Intelligent Driving (AID) company, which has more than 200 employees and has been responsible for self-driving-car development for the VW Group.
Ford does not now sell any pure-electric vehicles.
"A VW investment in Ford's AV business would provide a crucial public validation data point (similar to SoftBank's investment in GM Cruise), and could be just the start of external capital for Ford's AV business", Schwarz said.
"Unlocking the synergies across a range of areas allows us to showcase the power of our global alliance in this era of smart vehicles for a smart world". The two companies say a second Ford-badged MEB-based BEV is also under discussion.
Ford created Ford Autonomous Vehicles LLC in 2018, pledging to invest $4 billion until 2023 and has sought outside investors to help share the spiraling cost of developing autonomous vehicles.
The autonomous company has self-driving test fleets of Ford Fusion Hybrids active in Detroit, Pittsburgh, Palo Alto, Miami and Washington D.C. Argo AI's goal is the same - developing hardware and software for self-driving vehicles that can be manufactured and deployed at scale.