Arrival and Uber to develop electric car for ride-hailing sector
Electric vehicle maker Arrival is turning its attentions to the ride-hailing sector with plans to develop a purpose-built electric car.
Its Arrival Car is being developed in partnership with Uber – and its drivers – and is expected to enter production in Q3 2023.
It will tackle several prevailing issues, including the need to shift ride-hailing and car sharing services to EVs – there are an estimated 30 million-plus ride-hailing drivers globally. Uber itself has committed to becoming a fully electric mobility platform in London by 2025 and by 2030 across North America and Europe.
The Arrival Car will also be centred around affordability and driver comfort, safety and convenience, along with the provision of a premium experience for passengers.
The final vehicle design is expected to be revealed before the end of 2021 and the Arrival Car, when launched, will join the Arrival Bus and Van. The electric bus is expected to begin in Q4 2021 and the van is due in the second half of 2022; the latter is due to begin public road trials with customers this upcoming summer and will bring “outstanding total cost of ownership and robust design”.
All Arrival vehicles are being developed to be price-competitive with fossil fuel equivalents due to its use of local Microfactories. These provide decentralised production in cities around the world, manufacturing vehicles close to areas of demand. The first three Microfactories are currently being planned for locations in North and South Carolina in the US, as well as in Bicester, United Kingdom.
Alongside Uber, Arrival – which last month completed one of the largest-ever UK tech flotations – has an existing partnership with UPS. The global logistics company announced in January 2020 that it had ordered 10,000 electric commercial vehicles from Arrival for use in the UK, Europe and North America, and that its venture capital arm had taken an equity stake, believed to be minority, in the firm.
Tom Elvidge, SVP Arrival Mobility UK, said: “We are confident that electrifying ride-hailing vehicles will have an outsized impact on cities, and we are keen to support drivers as they manage this transition. Arrival Car will be designed around drivers’ needs to create a vehicle that is affordable, durable and desirable. We have a great partnership with UPS to create a best-in-class electric delivery vehicle, and we hope to replicate that success with Uber as we develop the best possible product for ride-hailing that elevates the experience of the passenger and improves drivers’ health, safety and finances.”