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VW faces a critical year in 2021 to escalate its electric-car push with new models like the ID.4 compact SUV and a more spacious version of the Porsche Taycan. Image Credit: Reuters

Frankfurt: Two rival carmakers are coming together to push the bounds of electrifying transportation.

Volkswagen on Monday said it has deepened its “e-mobility” partnership with Ford under which the US carmaker will produce a second electric vehicle for the European market based on its German rival's platform.

As part of the expanded cooperation, Ford will double its planned volume of vehicles to be produced based on Volkswagen's modular electric-drive platform, known as MEB, to 1.2 million units over a six-year time frame.

Profitability, speed

“Profitability and speed are now crucial for finally achieving the breakthrough of e-mobility in Europe. We are tackling both together with Ford," Volkswagen management board member Thomas Schmall said.

“Today's agreement will further accelerate the electrification of the two companies.”

Ford's first model to use the MEB platform will be an all-electric crossover, to be produced at Ford's Cologne plant from 2023.

The carmaker, which earlier this month said it will boost spending on electric vehicles to $50 billion through 2026, has not provided any details on the second model.

Ford: 7 new EV models

Ford Motor Co. is boosting its EV lineup with seven new models over the next two years across its passenger car and commercial van range to target sales of more than 600,000 battery-powered vehicles.

The US carmaker is also doubling to $2 billion its planned investment at its key European production site in Cologne, Germany, to make electric vehicles as well as a battery assembly facility starting in 2024, Ford said Monday.

The push is part of the automaker’s global plan to reach more than 2 million in EV sales.

For its part, Volkswagen is pushing the EV game ahead, and set to introduce smaller and cheaper all-electric ID. models with a VW ID. 2 “baby SUV” followed by a supermini EV later, and the cars could well be manufactured by SEAT in Spain.

VW has been working on a more affordable version of the all-electric MEB platform that underpins the likes of the ID.