electric car plugged in

Checking in on EV Makers

Ford’s $11.5 Billion Plan to Invest in EVs

Ford (F) is scheduled to unveil an all-electric version of its Transit van tomorrow. The automaker is investing $100 million to produce the new Transit van at a plant in Missouri. This will create 150 new jobs at the plant.

The initiative is part of Ford’s plan to spend over $11.5 billion on electric vehicles through 2022. Ford is devoting $3.2 billion to building new all-electric vehicles like the Transit van, which will be available for purchase in late 2021, as well as an all-electric F-150 pickup which will debut in mid-2022. Next month, it is expected that Ford’s long-awaited Mustang Mach-E, a new electric crossover vehicle, will go on sale. The new model will compete with Tesla’s Model Y.

GM Hires 3,000 Workers to Grow EV Operations

Not to be outdone, General Motors (GM) is in the process of hiring 3,000 engineers and software developers in order to stay relevant in a changing automobile market. As consumers become more excited about EVs and vehicles that depend on computers, legacy carmakers are hiring more tech workers to stay competitive with companies like Tesla (TSLA) and smaller startups.

For decades, GM’s product development operations have been centered around the company’s headquarters in Detroit. Now, GM is incorporating more remote workers into its structure than ever before in order to bring in talent from outside of Detroit. GM says its hiring spree has already started and will continue through the first quarter of 2021.

Nikola’s Legal Battles

Legacy automakers are keeping a close watch on new companies specializing in electric vehicles. Recently, established auto companies, especially those specializing in trucks, saw Nikola (NKLA) as a threat. However, the EV truck maker which was once a Wall Street darling has been faced with allegations of fraud.

In September, the Department of Justice issued grand jury subpoenas to Nikola, as well as to Trevor Milton, the company’s founder. The New York County District Attorney’s Office also gave Nikola a grand jury subpoena. The electric truck maker shared that these subpoenas had been issued in a regulatory filing on Monday. Nikola has been accused of making false claims about its technology so it could grow and form partnerships with large auto companies like GM. Nikola has denied these allegations. Regardless of how the cases turn out, Nikola’s reputation has taken a hit.

Companies old and new, large and small are jockeying for position in a growing and changing EV market. Investors will be eager to see which companies come out ahead.

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