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VDL Nedcar to build electric vehicles  for American company Canoo
VDL Nedcar will begin production of the Lifestyle Vehicle model from the American startup Canoo in the fourth quarter of 2022. The vehicle can travel more than 400 kilometres on a single battery charge.

VDL Nedcar to build electric vehicles for American company Canoo

17 June 2021

VDL Nedcar has taken an important first step towards securing its long-term future. Based in Born (Netherlands) as part of VDL Groep, the vehicle manufacturer will produce cars for Canoo. This startup from the United States intends to have cars produced at VDL Nedcar until at least 2028. Both parties signed a contract yesterday.

Canoo, based in California, will market ‘the most space-efficient electric vehicle, minivans and vans with a large load capacity in a small footprint’. Called Lifestyle Vehicle, the model which VDL Nedcar will produce for Canoo is the first vehicle the startup will put into production. Canoo also announced today that it will build its own new car plant in America.

No effect on current production

VDL Nedcar will initially build 1,000 vehicles for Canoo in the fourth quarter of 2022, reaching 15,000 in 2023. Temporary accommodation may be provided at the factory in Born because a permit for new construction at VDL Nedcar’s site has not yet been obtained. The new production activities for Canoo will not affect VDL Nedcar’s current production. Production of the MINI models and the BMW X1 for BMW Group will end in 2023.

VDL Nedcar’s aim is to serve multiple customers simultaneously. It is currently in talks with a number of interested parties on producing cars in Born. Its ambition is to build cars for both startups and established brands, as well as the local assembly of battery packs and expanding activities in the value chain, such as prototyping, homologation and sales & after-sales, whether or not in cooperation with partners.

Broad mobility proposition

The construction of fully electric vehicles is a seamless match with VDL Groep’s broad mobility proposition. To this end VDL is the European leader in the electrification of heavier vehicles, automated guided vehicles (AGVs), buses & coaches, and e-trucks. VDL also sets up car factories with automated production lines worldwide, and several of VDL’s suppliers supply the automotive industry.

‘VDL Nedcar is absolutely the right partner’

‘We conducted a thorough search for our first contract manufacturer, and invested significant time and resources across the globe to do so,’ said Investor, Chairman and CEO of Canoo, Tony Aquila. ‘VDL Nedcar is absolutely the right partner. It is Europe’s most trusted manufacturer, building high-quality products for leading brands while outperforming its competitors. VDL Nedcar is owned by the Van der Leegte family, which aligns with our commitment to support companies that form the backbone of communities. This strategic partnership lets us bring vehicles to market while building our own car plant in Oklahoma. The partnership also positions us strongly for our geographic European expansion, while building a solid relationship with VDL Nedcar and VDL Groep. Our investments will help us to scale up quickly and fulfil our mission: to make affordable, purpose-built electric vehicles possible for everyone.’

First step towards a new future

‘The cooperation with Canoo is great news for our employees in Born,’ points out VDL Nedcar’s CEO John van Soerland. ‘With Canoo’s own highly developed vehicle including the platform, together we can shape the future of mobility at an accelerated rate. This collaboration offers a perspective, and it is the first step towards a new future for VDL Nedcar. A future where we build different cars for multiple brands simultaneously.’

Specifications of Canoo’s Lifestyle Vehicle:

  • Battery charging time to 80%: 28 minutes
  • Range on one battery charge: around 400 kilometres
  • Capacity: 5-7 seats
  • Top speed: 200 kph
  • Weight: 2,020 kilograms

About Canoo

Canoo has developed breakthrough electric vehicles that are reinventing the automotive landscape with bold innovations in design, pioneering technologies, and a unique business model that defies traditional ownership to put customers first. Distinguished by its experienced team – totalling over 400 employees from leading technology and automotive companies – Canoo has designed a modular electric platform purpose-built to deliver maximum vehicle interior space, and adaptable to support a wide range of vehicle applications for consumers and businesses. For more information, go to www.canoo.com. For Canoo press material, including photos, go to press.canoo.com.

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