If selling vehicles is part of your business, then why not put money forth to help build more of them.

Cox Automotive controls prestigious brands like Kelley Blue Book, Autotrader, and Manheim, but it will also be part of another one: Rivian.

The company says it is due to a “unique approach to building an electrified future” and a “commitment to environmental change.” But the real reason is probably only one: Rivian seems to be a pretty good investment. Amazon and Ford realized that and put more money in the company: $700 million and $500 million, respectively.

The intriguing aspect is that Cox Automotive has always taken care of the automotive chain after the car production is complete. In other words, it deals with selling, servicing and evaluating vehicles. This is probably their first move into production, even if not in a direct fashion.

According to the press release, Cox Automotive also wants to “explore partnership opportunities in service operations, logistics, and digital retailing.” This last activity is the one that makes more sense.

Instead of creating a whole digital selling structure for its cars, Rivian can perfectly use one Cox Automotive has developed for its brands. RJ Scaringe, Rivian’s founder and CEO, makes that very clear.

Rivian R1T Rendered In New Colors

“We are building a Rivian ownership experience that matches the care and consideration that go into our vehicles. As part of this, we are excited to work with Cox Automotive in delivering consistent customer experience across our various touchpoints. Cox Automotive’s global footprint, service and logistics capabilities, and retail technology platform make them a great partner for us.”

In a calculated way or not, he even managed to needle Tesla, which has had some problems with updates on the Model S and the paint job on the Model 3.

If Cox Automotive invested in Tesla, would it have helped the company’s car servicing be quicker? More than that, will Cox Automotive help Rivian avoid similar issues? It will be very enlightening to follow what happens next.

Gallery: Rivian R1T Electric Pickup Truck Shocks World In LA Debut [UPDATE]

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Rivian Announces $350 Million Investment from Cox Automotive

PLYMOUTH, Mich., Sept. 10, 2019 – Rivian today announced an equity investment of $350 million from global automotive services company Cox Automotive. In addition to the investment, the companies will explore partnership opportunities in service operations, logistics, and digital retailing.

“We are building a Rivian ownership experience that matches the care and consideration that go into our vehicles,” said RJ Scaringe, founder and CEO of Rivian. “As part of this, we are excited to work with Cox Automotive in delivering a consistent customer experience across our various touchpoints. Cox Automotive’s global footprint, service and logistics capabilities, and retail technology platform make them a great partner for us.”

Cox Automotive, a subsidiary of Cox Enterprises, is the home of nearly 30 automotive brands, including Autotrader, Kelley Blue Book, Pivet, RideKleen and Manheim, which transports, services, and auctions vehicles across more than 150 global locations.

“We are excited by Rivian’s unique approach to building an electrified future and to be part of the positive impact its products will bring to our roads and the world around us,” said Sandy Schwartz, president of Cox Automotive. “This investment complements Cox Automotive’s own commitment to environmental change through our Cox Conserves efforts.”

US- based transportation and technology company Rivian has developed two clean sheet electric adventure vehicles, the R1T truck and the R1S SUV. Designed on a flexible skateboard platform, the R1T and R1S will each be available with up to 400 miles of range and an unmatched combination of off-road utility and high performance.

“With the electrification of vehicles set to play a significant role in the new mobility future, this partnership opens another channel of discovery and learning for Cox Automotive,” said Joe George, president of Cox Automotive Mobility Group. “Advancements in battery technology and the electrification of fleets are two of our primary focus areas, and we believe this relationship will prove to be mutually beneficial.”

This partnership marks Rivian’s third investment announcement of 2019, following a $700 million investment round in February led by Amazon, and in April, a $500 million investment from Ford Motor Company. Rivian will remain an independent company, and Cox Automotive will add a representative to Rivian’s board.

About Rivian

Rivian is developing vehicles, technology and services that inspire people to get out and explore the world. With a team of more than 1000 people, Rivian has development centers in Plymouth, Mich.; San Jose, Calif.; Irvine, Calif; and Surrey, England; along with a 2.6-million-square-foot manufacturing plant in Normal, Ill. Rivian will launch the R1T and R1S in the US in late 2020, with introduction to other global geographies starting in 2021. Rivian is now accepting preorders on its R1T and R1S. More information is available at rivian.com.

About Cox Automotive 

Cox Automotive Inc. makes buying, selling, owning and using cars easier for everyone. The global company’s 34,000-plus team members and family of brands, including Autotrader®, Clutch Technologies, Dealer.com®, Dealertrack®, Kelley Blue Book®, Manheim®, NextGear Capital®, VinSolutions®, vAuto®and Xtime®, are passionate about helping millions of car shoppers, 40,000 auto dealer clients across five continents and many others throughout the automotive industry thrive for generations to come. Cox Automotive is a subsidiary of Cox Enterprises Inc., a privately-owned, Atlanta-based company with revenues exceeding $20 billion. More information is available at coxautoinc.com.