Ford, Volkswagen Pair Up on Electric and Self-Driving Vehicles
The auto industry is a cut throat business, so you don’t often see carmakers going outside of the family to team up with other brands on research and development. That’s why a new partnership between Ford Motor Co. and Volkswagen on electric and self-driving vehicles is getting so much attention.
The car manufacturers announced in July that they will share platforms to work on a new wave of vehicles, and make a multibillion dollar investment in autonomous vehicle firm Agro AI. The Pittsburgh-based company aligned with Carnegie Mellon University is working on what it calls “fully integrated” self-driving technology.
“While Ford and Volkswagen remain independent and fiercely competitive in the marketplace, teaming up and working with Argo AI on this important technology allows us to deliver unmatched capability, scale and geographic reach,” Ford Chief Executive Officer Jim Hackett said in a press release announcing the partnership. “Unlocking the synergies across a range of areas allows us to showcase the power of our global alliance in this era of smart vehicles for a smart world.”
Ford says it will use Volkswagen’s electric vehicle architecture to build at least one fully electric vehicle for European markets by 2023. The companies are also sharing development costs for separate commercial vans and medium-size pickup trucks starting in 2022.
“Our global alliance is beginning to demonstrate even greater promise, and we are continuing to look at other areas on which we might collaborate,” Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess said in the announcement.
Legal Protections against Defective Cars
Although advances in technology promise to improve the way that people get from Point A to Point B, the rush to roll out new cars raises safety concerns. The unfortunate fact is that many vehicles leave the factory every day with significant defects that can put everyone at risk.
Ford, for example, recently recalled 1.2 million Explorers over suspensions defects that company said could make the cars more susceptible to a crash. Volkswagen in recent months called back more than 50,000 vehicles because of a rear coil spring problem.
Fortunately, the California lemon law offers some valuable protections for car owners and lessors in the Golden State. It requires manufacturers to buy back certain vehicles that the company refuses or is unable to repair while still under warranty. It also allows the carmaker to offer to replace the vehicles with a new one, instead. When a manufacturer buys back a vehicle, it has to reimburse the owner for the purchase price, financing fees and other related expenses.
Speak with a California Lemon Law Attorney
The California Lemon Law lawyers at the Bickel Law Firm have represented hundreds of clients in defective vehicle cases across the state. We do not charge upfront fees in most cases.
Our offices are conveniently located in San Diego, Los Angeles and San Francisco. Call us at (888) 800-1983 or contact us online to speak with a California lemon law attorney.