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GM and Honda collaborated on the design of the Cruise Origin, a robotaxi prototype in San Francisco. Photo: Cruise

In a sign of the times, GM and Honda said this week they're looking to develop more vehicles together, sharing platforms and propulsion systems across their product lineups in North America.

Why it matters: Automakers have already been forming strategic alliances to collaborate on expensive technologies like connected, self-driving electric cars. But the pandemic has taken a heavy toll on the industry, heightening the need for cost savings on core products, too.

Details: For now, it's just an agreement to explore a strategic alliance, but the two companies have been partners for 20 years, so a broader deal is likely.

  • In recent years they have collaborated on futuristic projects like fuel cells and the Cruise Origin robotaxi, unveiled in January.
  • In April, Honda announced it would develop two electric vehicles on GM's new Ultium battery platform and embed them with GM's OnStar connected services technology.
  • Now, they're talking about pooling resources on everything from vehicle engineering to purchasing parts and manufacturing.

What they're saying: "This alliance will help both companies accelerate investment in future mobility innovation by freeing up additional resources. Given our strong track record of collaboration, the companies would realize significant synergies in the development of today's vehicle portfolio," GM president Mark Reuss said in a statement.

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