Hyundai and Kia to invest €100m in UK-based EV startup Arrival
Hyundai and Kia are looking to accelerate their clean-mobility transformation with a €100m investment in UK-based startup Arrival.
Founded in 2015, Arrival has production plants and R&D centres in the US, Germany, Singapore, Russia and the UK. The company’s strength lies in its ‘skateboard’ vehicle platform which features a modular component structure. This is a cost-effective base which incorporates a battery pack, electric motor and driveline components.
Dubbed ‘Generation 2 Electric Vehicles’ these surpass traditional vehicles in cost, design and efficiency, and are designed to be assembled by microfactories located to serve local communities.
Fully-scalable to accommodate multiple vehicle types, Arrival is currently carrying out pilot projects with multiple logistics companies in Europe using cargo vans manufactured with the technology.
By working with Arrival, Hyundai and Kia plan to supply eco-friendly vans and buses – built in volume and based on Arrival’s platform – to European logistics companies and mobility companies that provide on-demand ride-hailing and shuttle services.
The demand for these types of eco-friendly commercial vehicles is expected to grow rapidly as environmental regulations tighten. From 2021, the EU will introduce the world’s most stringent vehicle emissions regulations, cutting each automaker’s fleet-wide average CO2 emissions by around 27%, from 130 g/km to 95 g/km.
“Through the joint development of electric commercial vehicles with Arrival, we will be able to gain a competitive advantage and progressively establish our leadership in the global eco-friendly vehicle market, with Europe at the forefront,” commented Albert Biermann, president and head of research and development division for Hyundai Motor Group.
Denis Sverdlovsk, chief executive officer of Arrival, added: “Arrival has created a game changing product category - Generation 2.0 electric vehicles [and] our Strategic Partnership with Hyundai and Kia means we will scale Generation 2 electric vehicles globally and importantly - in the very near future.”
The announcement follows Hyundai recently presenting its fully-electric Purpose Built Vehicle (PBV) concept as one of its smart mobility solutions at CES 2020.
Youngcho Chi, president and chief innovation officer at Hyundai Motor Group, said: “This investment is part of an open innovation strategy pursued by Hyundai and Kia. We will accelerate investment and cooperation with companies with advanced technology such as Arrival, to respond to the rapidly changing eco-friendly vehicle market.
The investment in Arrival is the latest from Hyundai and Kia. In May 2019, they invested $90 million in Rimac, a Croatian high-performance electric vehicle company. In September 2019, Hyundai and Kia also invested in IONITY, Europe’s largest high-power electric vehicle charging network.
These investments are seen as a way to build a leadership position in the rapidly expanding global EV market.