Ford to Invest $500 Million in Rivian, a Tesla Rival

Ford is counting on the partnership to accelerate its efforts to field a range of electric cars and trucks, while it also pushes to streamline operations, slash costs and increase profitability.

Ford’s investment reflects a changing dynamic in the auto industry as newcomers find a foothold based on technological advances.

It builds each model on a chassis, shaped like a skateboard, containing all the components that propel the vehicle — a large battery pack, axles, suspension, cooling system and four electric motors.

Mr. Scaringe said that Rivian had held talks with a variety of automakers but that he and Mr. Ford, long a proponent of zero-emissions vehicles, shared a similar vision about developing sustainable transportation.

On Monday, Tesla’s chief executive, Elon Musk, said the company planned to operate a fleet of one million self-driving taxis by the end of next year.

Previous investments in Rivian include $500 million from Sumitomo, a Japanese conglomerate known for its tire division, and Abdul Latif Jameel, a Saudi industrial group.

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