When you hear the name “Canoo” you might think water.

However, this Canoo is an emerging battery electric vehicle OEM company. It is developing breakthrough purpose-built electric vehicles with a proprietary and highly versatile platform architecture. 

ArcelorMittal first heard from Canoo a few years ago. “Canoo was incorporated in late 2017 and immediately reached out to ArcelorMittal for technical assistance. We had really positive relationships with their key founders, who we worked with at a previous EV company,” says Scott Stone, who is the Global Technology Coordinator at ArcelorMittal Global R & D who has responsibility for the emerging BEV OEMs.

Stone says, “Within the North America automotive department we’ve built a special team to support and manage the emerging OEMs. This team has addressed both technical and commercial needs which have proven to be quite different.”

"We have been highly engaged with Canoo from the outset, both technically and commercially, including co-engineering," says Gail Milne, ArcelorMittal’s Team Manager for Emerging OEMs. "Thanks to our successful collaboration, the lifestyle vehicle contains more than 90% steel in the Body In White and the skateboard." (the underlying support platform of the vehicles)

Canoo is getting ready to roll, starting with the production of a delivery and work-related version of the Lifestyle vehicle, then the Lifestyle vehicle itself. This will be followed by a larger multi-purpose delivery vehicle and finally, a pickup truck.  Canoo considers the Lifestyle vehicle to be “A loft on wheels.” Its proprietary multi-purpose platform provides SUV-sized interior space on a smaller exterior footprint.

“ArcelorMittal’s intent to support this segment of the industry is two-fold,” says Milne. “First, we want to ensure that steel is the material of choice for all of the emerging OEMs. Secondly, we want to eventually secure business for ArcelorMittal.”

In this case, those goals seem to have been reached, as ArcelorMittal has been awarded a significant amount of Canoo’s business for its first vehicle, the Lifestyle Delivery Vehicle, which will launch in the second half of this year in Bentonville, Arkansas.

Canoo’s current headquarters are in Torrance, California. However, the company has announced it will build a new plant in Pryor, Oklahoma capable of making 150,000 vehicles each year. That should be ready in 2023.