Hyundai has signed a deal with electric vehicle startup Canoo to co-develop a platform that will serve as the basis for the automaker’s electric vehicle endeavors.
The two companies will use Canoo’s existing electric skateboard—the platform upon which an electric vehicle is built, housing the batteries and electric motors—as the basis for a platform the automaker can use for both Hyundai and Kia models. One of the selling points of Canoo’s skateboard is that, in addition to housing the critical components, it is designed around functional integration. In other words, each component fulfills as many functions as possible. This significantly cuts down on the complexity of the skateboard, while also reducing size, weight and cost. Fewer components also mean more cabin space.
Hyundai had previously committed to investing $87 billion over the next five years to help foster and lay the groundwork for future growth. The deal with Canoo is a big part of that.
“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,” said Albert Biermann, Head of Research & Development, Hyundai Motor Group. “We will collaborate with Canoo engineers to develop a cost-effective Hyundai platform concept that is autonomous ready and suitable for mass adoption.”
With automakers racing to move to electric vehicles, Hyundai’s announcement is welcome news from a company that has built a reputation on building quality vehicles at an affordable price point. Hopefully that reputation carries over to their electric vehicles, thanks in no small part to the benefits of Canoo’s skateboard.