We knew it was going to happen and now, Taiwanese juggernaut Foxconn has officially closed its deal to purchase the Ohio factory of Lordstown Motors.
Lordstown entered the automotive space with a lot of promises but has so far failed to live up to them. The EV startup purchased the site from General Motors but will now transfer ownership to Hon Hai Technology Group. In addition, Lordstown’s 400 manufacturing employees will be transferred to Foxconn and the iPhone manufacturer will also take on the responsibility of manufacturing the all-electric Endurance pickup truck.
Auto News notes that the deal means Lordstown will no longer act as an automaker and instead become a product development and engineering outfit. An additional $100 million from Foxconn will be invested to create a joint venture affiliate that will develop EVs using its Mobility-in-Harmony platforms.
Speaking with the press, Lordstown chief executive Daniel Ninivaggi reiterated previous statements that despite the injection of cash from Foxconn, it does not have enough money to begin production of the Endurance this fall. In fact, it is looking to raise an additional $150 million to meet its production targets.
“We have about 250 engineers, product development people mostly in Farmington Hills [Mich.] and Irvine [Calif.]. We have purchasing, quality, everything but manufacturing,” Ninivaggi added.
Foxconn’s ownership of the Ohio plant will also allow it to produce the affordable ‘PEAR’ electric vehicle currently being developed by Fisker.
Lordstown’s first-quarter loss for 2022 sat at $89.6 million, down from $125.2 million in Q1 2021. The company has said it had a cash balance of $204 million compared with $587 million a year earlier.
“I have a lot of faith in Foxconn’s strategy,” Ninivaggi told Auto News. “Anything in automotive is difficult, but they have the conviction. They are making investments all over the world. Foxconn looks at vehicles the way tech companies look at vehicles as platforms. And the innovation is increasingly in the software. And nobody is better at software and hardware integration than Foxconn.”