April 24 (UPI) -- Ford announced Wednesday that it has made a $500 million equity investment in the Michigan-based electric vehicle company Rivian, which debuted a battery-powered pickup truck and sports utility vehicle last year.
The companies plan to work together to develop a battery-powered vehicle for Ford, according to a statement about the new partnership.
"We share a common goal to create a sustainable future for our industry through innovation," Ford Executive Chairman Bill Ford said in the statement.
Rivian announced in February that it raised $700 million in investments, led by e-commerce leader Amazon. At November's Los Angeles Auto Show, Rivian rolled out its R1T pickup and R1S SUV, which the company claimed had a range of 400 miles with off-road and utility capabilities.
Rivian is accepting pre-orders for the two vehicles, which are expected to launch in the United States in 2020.
"This strategic partnership marks another key milestone in our drive to accelerate the transition to sustainable mobility," Rivian founder R.J. Scaringe said in a statement. "Ford has a long-standing commitment to sustainability, with Bill Ford being one of the industry's earliest advocates, and we are excited to use our technology to get more electric vehicles on the road."
Ford said it will develop a new electric vehicle using Rivian's skateboard platform. Rivian has development centers in Plymouth, Mich., where its headquarters are located; San Jose, Calif.; Irvine, Calif.; and Surrey, England.
In its partnership with Rivian, Ford appeared to beat rival General Motors to the punch. GM had shown interest in a working relationship with Rivian, offering engineering and manufacturing expertise to the startup before talks fell apart earlier this year.