Lordstown Motors on Wednesday announced the completion of the sale of its former GM factory to Hon Hai Technology Group—otherwise known as Foxconn, best known as the contract maker of the iPhone.
That makes Foxconn an automaker, and enables several potential EV-making activities at the Lordstown, Ohio site.
One of them is the assembly of the Lordstown Endurance electric pickup, which will be overseen by Foxconn as a contract manufacturer “with no interruption in operations,” according to a release from Lordstown. The companies plan for production of the electric truck to start in the third quarter of 2022, with first commercial deliveries in the fourth quarter.
Foxconn will also invest $100 million in a joint venture that will work with Lordstown Motors and engineer vehicles to be based on Foxconn’s MiH (mobility in harmony) platform. The joint venture, owned 55% by Foxconn and 45% by Lordstown, is to be called MIH EV Design LLC and will “develop electric vehicles for the global market.”
The joint venture could essentially be the missing piece that permits Lordstown to be viable beyond the start of Endurance production.
Specifically, the companies said, those would be both for the North American commercial vehicle market and for other OEMs internationally, and the joint venture will aim “to achieve production scale at lower volumes and with a shorter time to market.”
The deal otherwise continues mostly as laid out in November 2021, including $260 million in proceeds to Lordstown Motors, plus a previous $50 million common stock purchase. Lordstown says that it will retain a presence in Lordstown, plus staff in Farmington, Michigan, and Irvine, California.
Henrik Fisker with Project PEAR EV
The arrangement says nothing yet about another potentially important piece related to the deal. Foxconn has proposed assembling the $30,000 Fisker Pear urban EV at the Lordstown plant. With Foxconn now in command of the plant, that could enable an electric pickup, an urban EV, commercial vehicles, and more—all to be made at a site GM abandoned ahead of its electric vehicle push.