Hyundai Motor and Kia Motors have joined hands with a U.S. company to jointly develop a next-generation electric vehicle (EV) platform.
Hyundai-Kia and Canoo announced on Feb. 12 that they have signed a mutual cooperation agreement on the development of next-generation electric vehicles at the Canoo main office in Los Angeles. Through this collaboration, Canoo will provide technical support for the development of a modular electric vehicle platform optimized for Hyundai and Kia.
Hyundai and Kia will develop price-competitive small and medium-sized passenger EVs as well as purpose-based mobility (PBV) that meets a variety of customer needs by using a relevant platform.
Headquartered in Los Angeles, Canoo specializes in the skateboard architecture that houses core EV parts such as the batteries and the electric drivetrain on the vehicle in a chassis underneath the vehicle’s cabin.
The skateboard platform uses standardized batteries and drivetrain. It refers to a structure that allows upper bodies of various shapes to be placed on a skateboard-shaped platform.
In particular, the size, weight and number of parts of the skateboard platform can be drastically reduced to secure indoor space and lower costs. Canoo's skateboard platform is designed to house upper bodies of various structures according to uses, and the strength of the platform can be freely extended.
Established in December 2017, Canoo unveiled its first electric vehicle using the skateboard platform technology in September 2019, in 19 months since the start of R&D activities. The company is currently testing its electric vehicle. More than 300 engineers are currently working to refine the concept of Canoo's architecture system. Canoo plans to launch the first electric vehicle in 2021.
Hyundai and Kia will use Canoe's skateboard platform to simplify and standardize the EV development process, thereby laying the foundation to lower EV prices. In addition, as one platform can be used to produce various models, the automakers are judging that they will be able to respond to changes in customer demand more quickly.