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Lincoln Electric SUV Canceled Amid Coronavirus Crisis

Beverly Braga | Apr 29, 2020

Just three months after announcing the co-development of its first-ever electric vehicle, Lincoln’s plans for a Rivian-based EV have been scrapped due to the coronavirus pandemic. While product development and production plans for all car companies have experienced delays globally, this is the first instance of a U.S.-based model being called off completely.

Lincoln Electric SUV

The cancelation only speaks to the current development project, an electric Lincoln SUV, and does not reflect an end to the automakers’ partnership as a whole. “Our strategic commitment to Lincoln, Rivian, and electrification remains unchanged,” Lincoln said in a statement sent to Automotive News. Adding that “Lincoln’s future plans will include an all-electric vehicle consistent with its Quiet Flight DNA.”

Ford Motor Company made headlines last April with a $500-million equity investment in nascent EV company Rivian with additional development plans for a next-generation Ford EV. To be based on Rivian’s flexible skateboard platform, the now-canceled Lincoln electric SUV would have joined a lineup that currently includes plug-in hybrid versions of the Aviator and Corsair.

Lincoln had been riding a wave of momentum, introducing four new models in three years. This reimagined lineup led to a 7% year-over-year sales growth in 2019.

Rivian’s lineup focuses on performance off-road-capable trucks and SUVs. Its first models, the R1T pickup and R1S SUV, were unveiled at the Los Angeles auto show in 2018. Specs for both vehicles list zero-to-60 mph times of 3 seconds and a driving range of more than 400 miles. Starting at $69,000 (before federal tax credits), the two Rivian models will be available for pre-order later this year.

Ford also continues its EV development, having announced an $11-billlion investment into vehicle electrification. Two new models have been confirmed for production: an electric version of the F-150 pickup and the Mustang-inspired Mach-E crossover.

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