Sokon-backed EV start-up is to take on InEVit, the battery and module innovator fronted by ex-Tesla CEO Martin Eberhard
SF Motors, one of the newest Silicon Valley EV start-ups on the block, continues its expansion strategy with the acquisition of InEVit, another newly created company which works in modularising batteries for EVs.
The acquisition is notable given that InEVit’s chairman and CTO is one of SF Motors’ primary industry consultants –former Tesla CEO, Martin Eberhard. The battery firm looks to have been set up around a year ago – although hasn’t much presence beyond a single landing page – to develop and license battery systems, EV drivetrain components and associated engineering, according to Elektrek.
According to SF, Eberhard’s venture has developed and patented a “unique EV chassis architecture, battery module design innovations and manufacturing techniques”, and “a chemistry- and form-factor-agnostic battery module design”. However, the statement does also note that the start-up is currently pre-revenue.
SF Motors says that the company’s “expertise, patented technologies and manufacturing techniques will be leveraged” to help it scale powertrain production for its own models. It will also look to license the technology to other automakers.
InEVit will now become a wholly owned subsidiary of SF Motors, but will continue to market and license its innovations to other OEMs.
SF Motors itself is backed by China’s Sokon Industry Group –an automobile and engine manufacturer – and established a US presence earlier this year with the opening of a Santa Barbara office. It then acquired an automotive plant formerly making Hummer vehicles in Indiana.
As for Eberhard he will now take a position as Chief Innovation Officer and Vice Chairman of SF Motors’ Board when he joins the company, and will focus on technology innovation, product development, product positioning and branding, SF said.
Other members of the InEVit leadership team will join SF Motors in senior roles. Co-founder Heiner Fees will now serve on the SF Motors Innovation Committee and continue as Managing Director for its German unit InEVit GmbH, while CEO Mike Miskovsky will become SF Motors’ Chief Development Officer, while also retaining his prior title at InEVit.
“I have truly enjoyed working with SF Motors and playing a role in the company’s strategic vision, and am excited to join the company along with the rest of the InEVit family as we work to establish the next great milestone in clean mobility,” said Eberhard.
With the promising technologies outlined in the press statement, it will be interesting to see what InEVit (and SF Motors) can provide. However, the close relationship between Eberhard and Sokon does suggest the Chinese group is putting a lot of its eggs in Eberhard’s basket – much of the success of SF looks to now depend on InEVit’s ability to deliver on its stated innovations.