Talks about a partnership between VW and Ford are still ongoing, yet Bill Ford, executive chairman of the US car maker, said that they are making good progress.
“We fit together geographically really well, product line-wise, we fit together well,” Bill Ford said at the CERAWeek energy conference in Houston. “We both came to the same realization that as big as our balance sheets are, no company can do this alone.”
He added that there’s been promising progress made in extending the partnership between the two automotive giants, which so far includes the joint production of commercial vehicles. Citing people familiar with the negotiations, the report states that the two companies have already established the framework for VW to invest in Ford’s autonomous driving partner Argo AI.
In addition, VW’s CEO Herbert Diess said that they are in “very good talks” with Ford, as far as including autonomous vehicles into their existing partnership. Diess added that the Blue Oval is actively considering using their EV-specific MEB platform.
“The supertanker is picking up speed,” Diess said during VW’s annual press conference. “We are aligning Volkswagen with e-mobility like no other company in our industry.”
If a deal is eventually finalized, it could help in preparing Ford for a future where EVs and autonomous cars will in solving problems like urban traffic and pollution, Ford’s executive chairman said.
“I’d like Ford to be around another 100 years, and if that’s going to happen, it’s clear that we really have to branch off into new directions to try to solve some of these problems,” Bill Ford said. “It’s hard because our current business model is providing all the earnings and cash flow that fund a lot of this change. So we have to do both really well. If we don’t make great cars and trucks today that people want, guess what? There is no tomorrow.”