EV startup Canoo is reshuffling its business plans, moving away from subscriptions and automaker partnerships and toward fleet sales, The Verge reported Monday.
During an investor call—Canoo's first as a publicly-traded company—chairman Tony Aquila indicated that Canoo is ending a partnership with Hyundai, and will instead focus on making and selling its own vehicles to commercial fleets, according to the report.
Announced in February 2020, the partnership called for Hyundai and sibling brand Kia to use Canoo's skateboard platform for future electric cars. Those models would have been produced alongside EVs based on the E-GMP platform Hyundai developed in-house, as well as EVs based on existing internal-combustion models.
Canoo MPDV electric van
Canoo has long emphasized automaker partnerships as a major part of its business, but the company's latest financial presentation doesn't mention Hyundai at all, The Verge noted.
The startup's growing lineup of proposed models (none has entered production so far) also shows signs of mission creep.
Unveiled in late 2019, Canoo's first EV was a minivan the company planned to offer exclusively by subscription, beginning in Los Angeles and gradually expanding to other markets.
But more recent models have instead emphasized efficiency and ownership costs. Late last year, Canoo unveiled a delivery van, aimed at businesses rather than the retail customers the first model targeted.
Canoo pickup truck
The pickup truck Canoo unveiled earlier this year earned praise for its compact size and novel design, but raises even more questions about Canoo's plans. With its array of outdoorsy accessories, the pickup seems aimed at personal use, but Canoo also downplayed the subscription model.
While it's managed to build working prototypes of its minivan and skateboard platform, Canoo has generated plenty of drama. Originally called Evelozcity, it was founded by Stefan Krause and Ulrich Kranz after both jumped ship from Faraday Future, triggering a lawsuit from that startup over alleged poaching of employees.
Kranz—who previously oversaw the BMW i electric sub-brand—served as CEO before stepping down last year, while Krause left prior to that. Prior to the investor call, Canoo announced that its CFO had stepped down to take another job, and its head of corporate strategy also left recently, The Verge reported.