Last week, Ford announced a number of steps it has taken to secure the raw materials it needs to build a grand total of 600,000 EVs across the globe next year, consisting of 270,000 Ford Mustang Mustang Mach-E crossovers, 150,000 Ford F-150 Lightning pickups, 150,000 E-Transit vans, and 30,000 units of an all-new mid-size crossover destined for Europe. FoMoCo has achieved this through a variety of partnerships and signing a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with a number of companies to explore additional supplier agreements that also ensure that the Ford EV battery nickel supply has been mostly secured through 2026 as well.
The Ford EV battery nickel supply has been fortified after the automaker announced that it is working with major mining collaborators and has signed non-binding MOUs with Vale Canada Ltd., PT Vale Indonesia and Huayou Cobalt to explore a three-way nickel processing project and provide Ford with rights to the equivalent of 84 kilotons per annum (ktpa) of nickel, as well as BHP and its Nickel West operations in Australia. The targeted multi-year agreement could start as early as 2025 and may involve additional commodities over time.
Though Ford is in the process of switching some of its EV batteries – including those in the F-150 Lightning and Mustang Mach-E – from lithium-ion to lithium iron-phosphate (LFP), which don’t require nickel, the automaker is also casting a wide net as it aims to secure enough materials to meet its lofty production goals.
In addition to securing raw materials agreements with companies across the globe, Ford is also considering using vertical integration – purchasing companies that procure raw materials used in EV production, or perhaps even start its own operations, as Ford Authority reported back in May, as well as via its joint venture with SK On dubbed BlueOvalSK.