After months of teasers and blurry spy shots, Rivian's next vehicle has finally been revealed. Meet the R2 crossover, the EV startup's long-awaited follow-up to its acclaimed R1T pickup truck and R1S three-row SUV. 

The R2, Rivian announced on Thursday, will go into production in the first half of 2026. It's available to reserve with a $100 refundable deposit on Rivian's website and will start at $45,000.

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This is Rivian's Tesla Model 3 moment

By establishing a brand-new U.S. car company and selling tens of thousands of high-end trucks and SUVs to paying customers, Rivian has accomplished the (nearly) impossible. Now it needs to turn a profit. The cheaper, higher-volume R2 SUV could propel Rivian to the promised land, much like the Model 3 sedan did for Tesla. 

Much to everyone's surprise, at the R2 event in California Rivian also revealed the R3, an even smaller crossover built on the R2's platform. The whiplash didn't end there, as Rivian CEO and founder R.J. Scaringe went on to unveil the R3X, a higher-performance tri-motor variant of the R3.

 

It's tough to overstate how big a moment this is for Rivian. Getting a couple of high-end models into production and into customer hands is a massive feat in itself. Now comes the even harder part: Making enough money consistently to become a viable business. That's where the R2 and R3 come in. 

Gallery: Rivian R2

As early leaks suggested, the production R2 looks a lot like a baby R1S. It has similarly boxy-yet-cute styling but in a more compact package. It's 185.6 inches long, compared to the R1S's 200.8 inches. That makes the R2 roughly the size of a Tesla Model Y, or slightly larger than a Toyota RAV4. The three-row R1S is closer in size to a Chevy Tahoe. 

The R2 with a larger battery option will have at least 300 miles of range, Rivian said. It will come equipped with the North American Charging Standard, or NACS, charging port, which Tesla pioneered and most of the U.S. auto industry is switching to. 

 

The R2 will come in single-, dual-, and tri-motor variants. The highest-performance SUV will have a zero-to-60-mph time of less than 3 seconds, Scaringe said. It will be built at Rivian's plant in Normal, Illinois to start. Importantly, the company says that will allow it to start pumping out R2s before its new factory in Georgia is up and running. 

The upcoming SUV offers up some quirky features, like Rivian's signature flashlight that pops out from the driver's door. It also has two glove boxes and a retracting rear window. Both rows of seating fold down to make extra room for camping. 

Gallery: Rivian R2 Live

Details are more scant for the R3 and R3X. So far, we don't know how much they'll cost or when they'll arrive. Scaringe said they'll also have two glove boxes and a neat rear window that acts as a secondary hatch. 

Smaller and cheaper than the Rivians that came before it, the R2 should let the upstart tap into a much wider customer base than it currently has. That's critical for a company that lost $5.4 billion in 2023. Moreover, Rivian said it doesn't plan to produce more vehicles in 2024 than it did last year, disappointing investors and indicating that demand for the R1T and R1S isn't growing. 

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Rivian's won acclaim for its rugged EVs and sold many more vehicles than fellow startups Lucid Motors and Fisker. It's diversified its business by making commercial electric vans—first for Amazon (a large Rivian investor) and now for all paying customers. But none of that will matter if it can't ride the R2 platform to long-term financial health. 

Are you a current or former Rivian employee with info to share about the R2 or R3? Contact the author: tim.levin@insideevs.com

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