Rivian Gets $700 Million Investment Led By Amazon

FEB 15 2019 BY ERIC LOVEDAY 147

This just in…Rivian gets big backing from Amazon.

Electric truck and SUV maker Rivian just got an influx of $700 million in funding in an investment round led by none other than Amazon.

Though the investment round was led by Amazon, this doesn’t rule out the possibility that General Motors was an investor too, as was previously reported here.

For Rivian, this means that the reality of its R1T electric truck and R1S electric SUV now become a step closer.

In the release on this funding announcement, Rivian CEO RJ Scaring states:

“This investment is an important milestone for Rivian and the shift to sustainable mobility. Beyond simply eliminating compromises that exist around performance, capability and efficiency, we are working to drive innovation across the entire customer experience. Delivering on this vision requires the right partners, and we are excited to have Amazon with us on our journey to create products, technology and experiences that reset expectations of what is possible.”

Amazon CEO worldwide consumer, Jeff Wilke, adds:

“We’re inspired by Rivian’s vision for the future of electric transportation. RJ has built an impressive organization, with a product portfolio and technology to match. We’re thrilled to invest in such an innovative company.”

We’re thrilled to see Rivian get this influx of cash and even more exciting to see that it comes from a major brand such as Amazon. This basically confirms our belief that Rivian is indeed the real deal. Rivian adds:

Rivian will remain an independent company. Amazon is leading the round, which includes participation from existing shareholders. Additional details about this investment are not being disclosed at this time.

Electric automaker Rivian has been around for a decade now, but it wasn’t until the LA Auto Show when Rivian burst onto the scene.

More in the press blast below

Rivian Announces $700M Investment Round Led By Amazon

PLYMOUTH, Mich., Feb. 15, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Rivian has announced an equity investment round of $700M led by Amazon. The investment comes on the heels of Rivian’s reveal of the all-electric R1T pickup and R1S SUV at the LA Auto Show last November.

Starting with a clean sheet, Rivian has developed its vehicles with adventurers at the core of every design and engineering decision. The company’s launch products, the R1T and R1S, deliver up to 400+ miles of range and provide an unmatched combination of performance, off-road capability and utility. These vehicles use the company’s flexible skateboard platform and will be produced at Rivian’s manufacturing plant in Normal, Ill., with customer deliveries expected to start in late 2020.

“This investment is an important milestone for Rivian and the shift to sustainable mobility,” said RJ Scaringe, Rivian Founder and CEO. “Beyond simply eliminating compromises that exist around performance, capability and efficiency, we are working to drive innovation across the entire customer experience. Delivering on this vision requires the right partners, and we are excited to have Amazon with us on our journey to create products, technology and experiences that reset expectations of what is possible.”

“We’re inspired by Rivian’s vision for the future of electric transportation,” said Jeff Wilke, Amazon CEO Worldwide Consumer. “RJ has built an impressive organization, with a product portfolio and technology to match. We’re thrilled to invest in such an innovative company.”

Rivian will remain an independent company. Amazon is leading the round, which includes participation from existing shareholders. Additional details about this investment are not being disclosed at this time.

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 750 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 www.rivian.com.

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147 Comments on "Rivian Gets $700 Million Investment Led By Amazon"

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Amazon vs. Tesla is like Dr. Evil vs. Tony Stark

Really? I see Tesla and Rivian as two superheros doing battle against mediocrity, inaction, greed and cronyism.

And check it out- there’s actually folks at this site who actually wanna see BOTH succeed. Weird, right?

TOTALLY

You should understand what cronyism means before you use the term.

No kidding, both Jeff Bazos and Elon Musk are down with cronyism when it suits them. Both of them are where they are because of it.

Maybe in some alternate Tesla-hater reality, Musk got to be a billionaire and the CEO of multiple cutting-edge tech by cronyism.

I can only guess you mean that Elon came from a wealthy family. Inheriting wealth is certainly not “cronyism”… you need to look up what that word actually means. Elon did get a boost up the “ladder of success” from his family, but the remainder of his long climb to the very top was all his own doing.

Here in the real world, Musk got where he is by being an astoundingly successful businessman and self-made billionaire, a tireless and dedicated worker, a brilliant visionary, and probably one of the smartest guys on the entire planet.

There certainly are a lot of people who seem eager to display their jealousy of Elon, which only shows how low their own self-esteem is.

LOL!!!!!

By African standards Elon’s family was “wealthy” by Western Standards the Musk were upper middle class. His dad was a mid level engineer. His dad did not give him seed money to start his first business.

Bill Gates got $70k from his dad to start Microsoft. Donald Trump got $25M from his dad to start his real estate development firm.

Elon is most definitely a self made man. And I would also include Bill Gates as self-made.

$25M in the 70s was a fortune already.

“It’s Not What You Know. It’s Who You Know”

I’m curious, who did Elon know, to get him where he is today?

This is the same guy who went to Russia once to buy their rockets, and they spat on him (look it up!), who then turned around to build his own rockets. Seems more like, what he knew, then who he knew. ha ha

Any need to be so snotty? Consider how many officials in Trump’s government que actively working to prevent a switch to EVs and renewables, some of whom are like Mr. Wheeler, a former lobbyist for coal who now runs the EPA. The definition of cronyism is to hire a friend who is entirely inapplicable for the position.

Jeff Bezos has a lot more similarity to Lex Luthor (both physically and in his modus operandi), so if you’ve got to frame him as a villain, then I’d go for that rather than Dr. Evil.

Which is deliciously ironic, given that I’ve seen RJ Scaringe (the Rivian boss) being compared to Clark Kent recently.

So where does this place Mr. Pecker from the National Enquirer.

Just below waist height….

And hopefully in jail soon.

Yeah him a lot others.

Very long overdue!

With Bezo’s, what comes around (his crappy Washington Post rag), goes around (those digging up and slinging dirt on him). What did he expect.

Only costed him his marriage, half his fortune.

I’m sure his kids will always be proud of him and his illicit photos.

Batman vs Superman

Your user name never rang truer.

Nice.

Any more comment like this and he should change it to bro2000

I think a great analogy comparing Elon Musk and RJ Scaringe is Tony Stark vs Clark Kent… 🙂

Why the false zero-sum narrative? I don’t see any significant conflict between Amazon.com and Tesla.

Amazon.com and Tesla both seem to be succeeding brilliantly, far more than most companies do. Interesting that they followed more or less the same business plan to success!

> Though the investment round was led by Amazon, this doesn’t rule out the possibility that General Motors
> was an investor too, as was previously reported here.

No it doesn’t rule it out. But it does make it less likely, and it does limit the scope of how big GM’s involvement could have been if they were involved.

The press release is painting this as Amazon plus a bit from existing investors. It’s difficult to see where GM fits into that.

It’ll be interesting to see what happens next. GM’s name has been getting thrown around a lot lately with suggestions that they may be doing this or that. GM themselves have kept quiet; that’s as it should be, but it wouldn’t be surprising if there was something going on behind all these rumours. It might not be an actual investment in Rivian, but there could be something else in the works.

IMO, we’re in a weird place with GM right now. Most of the world realizes they’re behind the curve on EVs, even with the (barely supported) Bolt, so there’s a tendency to see almost every opportunity through GM-colored lenses. Yet GM seems to be markedly unenthusiastic about the whole thing.

I would LOVE to see GM leap into an investment/tech sharing agreement with a company like Rivian, especially re:trucks, as it would likely push Ford and FCA to do way more than they are now/are planning.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

“I would LOVE to see GM leap into an investment/tech sharing agreement with a company like Rivian”

Why?
Isn’t GM one of the “Big boys” in the auto industry?
Shouldn’t they be capable of the technology required to make this pickup.

GM is in a tough place. They can’t make money on small ICE sedans. They have to use the $10,000 -$15,000 profits from there big pickups and SUV’S. They have now thrown in the towel on that. They built the Bolt so that it wouldn’t take sales away from it’s premium brands and there losing money on them.
They see the future is EVs but it’s going to take a large investment to get there and any sales of EV’S steals sales from there ICE. So if they can’t make a profitable EV and lose sales of profitable ICE they could go belly up.
Government needs to step up with making the transition. Add a carbon tax and use the money to get more consumers into EV.

“Shouldn’t they be capable of the technology required to make this pickup.”

Yes, GM certainly should be capable of that. They did an excellent job designing the Voltec PHEV powertrain. But then, they should have been able to design and build the BEV powertrain for the Bolt EV in-house, to give the company experience in designing their own BEVs.

But they didn’t. They got LG Electronics/LG Chem to do that for them.

Between that and investing in Rivian, it certainly looks like GM isn’t confident in its own EV tech.

BEV truck legitimacy is THE BIGGEST threat to GM/Ford’s bacon.

They should but they aren’t. It will take them another 5 years to get to where Rivian is now on EV pickup truck tech. GM might be hurling toward bankruptcy in 5 years. Again.

Probably for the best if Rivian were not associated with GM. Rivian has a lot of goodwill going for it but the old general…too much associated with the old and not necessarily very pleasant ways of doing business.

With loaded Jeff Bezos on its side Rivian should have little need for GM.

I don’t see Rivian spending much effort and capital to build their own self driving platform… they’ll have to get it from somewhere else…. GM Cruise, Waymo, Comma.ai. If they use GM Cruise, it makes sense to partner with GM.

GM reportedly is still figuring out how to reduce the cost of lidar from $20K to $300 while increasing range 250%. I wouldn’t be associated with GM over its chances to crack the self driving puzzle quicker than the rest of the pack.

Makes no sense. Manufacturers of solid-state lidar scanners have dropped the price by an order of magnitude or more within the last year or two without any help from GM. All GM needs to do is pick a manufacturer; no need to spend their own R&D money on that. All GM needs to do is to integrate that into their own cars, which of course will take some time and money, but then they’d have to do that no matter what sensors they use for their self-driving cars.

Reminds me of a story when they were developing the F-35 fighter jet, they wanted to integrate various sensors using a special shielded, multi-strand copper wire that would have cost millions to develop and manufacture. Some engineer said why don’t we just use a Ethernet cable?

That’s what I thought, but Rivian is making big claims for self-driving tech (link below). And if it’s not that, then what has Amazon.com so interested in Rivian?

I don’t know, but it certainly looks like Amazon.com (or Jeff Bezos) thinks Rivian has some self-driving tech worth investing in. The $700 million investment looks like a lot more than just a speculative long-shot investment, too.

http://www.wglt.org/post/first-rivian-adventure-vehicles-will-be-self-driving#stream/0

It’s not just money. What GM brings to the table is manufacturing knowhow. They can make these Rivian vehicles production ready in a very short time with no mistakes and missteps like Tesla has had. A fully functional vehicle ready to sell in likely less than two years. What GM gets out of it is the Rivian chassis, or “skateboard” to stick under GM’s pickups and SUVs.

In addition, GM also brings some awesome self driving tech that Rivian buyers are going to expect. Starting with Supercruise and then beyond. GM is actually one of the front runners on AV technology.

In the end, it’s easier to involve GM than it is to waste a lot of Amazon money trying to poach talent from other firms to assemble a team to get the job done. It’s wasteful, takes too much time and all of your talent ends up being over paid. It’s cheaper and faster to just let GM in on the deal.

Tesla didn’t need GM to develop cars that are quite a bit better than anything GM ever turned out. It’s all about attracting the right talent and with Jeff Bezos cash that should not be too hard.

One of Rivian’s most important assets is the goodwill associated with the brand, it should avoid compromising that by associating with GM.

We’re assuming GM wants to do this?

True. There has been no word from GM.

I hope we get some more details on their manufacturing strategy and how they will secure their battery supply and build their battery pack. I really think the key to this car is the battery supply and battery pack, being able to build to volume and not have cell supply issues like Hyundai and European Auto. Also, what Amazon can help with is have them build their own supercharger network, on par with Tesla… something that can be shared with their future electrically driven delivery platforms. Outside places like Norway, 3rd party DCFC is too inconsistent.

Bezos and Musk are friends, right? Maybe this will move Rivian towards adopting Tesla Supercharging with extra Amazon money to help build out the network?
I certainly would like to see that.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

I would like to see an option on the Rivian truck to have another DCFC for CCS.
IMHO, I would pay an additional $700 fo be able to use the Tesla SC and CCS. That open up a Krapload of places I can DCFC.

Well in Europe, Tesla is building both plugs on their new stations so I think that will happen in the US.. especially if Tesla opens up their network to Rivian. I don’t know… Rivian will be eating into Model X sales. There are alot of people that were disappointed by the Model X and is waiting for a decent SUV.

“Rivian will be eating into Model X sales.”

Not nearly as much as Rivian will be eating into gasmobile SUV and CUV sales.

It’s really weird how so many people posting comments to InsideEVs see the growing EV market as a zero-sum game, in which one EV maker has to lose in order for another to succeed.

The only significant zero-sum game is between gasmobiles and plug-in EVs, and that will be the case for at least several years.

Go Rivian!
Go Tesla!

No conflict there! 😉

Agreed. Rivian’s target market does not overlap much with Tesla’s at this point. If Rivian do well, it’s GM and Ford that have the most to lose, not Tesla.

There probably will be people making a decision between Model X or the Rivian SUV, but not many.

In any case, it’s going to take Rivian some time before they’ve ramped up production enough to actually make a noticeable dent in Tesla’s or anyone else’s sales figures. With all the hype, people seem to forget that they’ll need time to come up to speed.

They did it in Europe because they are forced to do so by the Eurocrats in Brussels at the behest of the Germans.

I don’t think they are friends. Bezos built Blue Origin by poaching SpaceX employees. He did it to such a degree, SpaceX began filtering employee emails that contained Blue Origin or known head hunters for Blue Origin.

I

I think a lot of people commenting on Rivian are much too focused on battery supply. Long-term, Rivian is going to have to deal with that. But in the short term, a small company like Rivian, given their limited plans for production over the next 3-4 years, should have no problem at all securing an adequate supply of batteries.

Tesla didn’t start building its Gigafactory 1 until the summer of 2014, two years after the Model S entered production.

Well, Battery supply is the biggest near term hinderance now and we are now learning how much problems Hyundai and Audi is having… not to mention Jaguar and Mercedes. Too many car makers trying to make EV’s with no sensible plan to make batteries. It should be the other way round.

Another Euro point of view

I believe Rivian has the right approach, going at it alone in such a low margin, capital intensive industry ends bad in almost every situation.

Yup. Tesla got a big infusion of much-needed capital from a DOE “green tech” loan, when it was tooling up to produce the Model S. In the current political climate, there’s no way that Rivian could get a similar deal. So I’m very glad to see Rivian is getting a large, if not quite so large, capital infusion from an investor, Amazon.com.

Key to Rivian’s survival is they need to stay private. If Tesla had this deal years ago and if they were still private, they would have been ahead with their Model 3.

I thought they received about $500 million from DOE and if I remember correctly they paid it back ahead of time.

Great to see big players like Amazon getting involved it the EV revolution. I think it speaks a lot to the hater outlets like Seeking Alpha, Yahoo Finance, and Fox News when the largest companies on the planet are jumping on board.

I agree, I suspect they are interested in it for smart home technology or possibly EV platforms for delivery. Maybe both.

Amazon’s in it for the battery tech so they can supply their own version of a Tesla Powerwall that can power the home and really make the smart home independent. Super smart move.

If they only cared about the battery why wouldn’t they invest in a battery supplier instead of a EV maker?

Yup, makes no sense. And battery packs optimized for BEVs are not optimized for stationary energy storage. Tesla uses battery cells with different chemistry in its PowerWalls and PowerPacks; different from the chemistry found in cells used in its BEVs.

I don’t think that’s the only reason why Amazon invested in Rivian. They wouldn’t have invested all that money in Aurora if that was the case.

Not true at all. Two strings to the bow of R&D, as it were. Both may be speculative investments for Amazon.com, with neither guaranteed to pay off in the workable self-driving delivery vehicle that Amazon.com needs.

“We’re inspired by Rivian’s vision for the future of electric transportation,” said Jeff Wilke, Amazon CEO Worldwide Consumer.

Pickups platforms are fairly easy to convert in vans, amazon wants vans in its fleets…

That was my first thought also.

It will be interesting to see how Rivian handles sales of their vehicles. Via Amazon with delivery and service at local GM Dealer? Will GM dealers maintain stock of Rivian vehicles? Will GM dealer sales associates even try to sell a Rivian?
Time will tell.

NPNS! SBF!
Volt#671 + BoltEV + Model 3

Lets hope Rivian, for the sake of their future, steers clear of anything to do with Goober Motors.

Maybe Amazon.com will handle online ordering of Rivian vehicles. They could all be made to order, like Tesla’s cars.

Pure speculation on my part.

Over to you, Apple and Google.

Wake up call Ford….

I hope I can use Alexa in my new Rivian! “Alexa, speed up”, “Alexa, take me to McDonalds”…. this is the killer feature now! BUT, I want to change my Rivian’s wake word to “Christine”. I also hope they are Prime eligible for free 1-day delivery.

I don’t think it’s publicly traded yet.

Doesn’t appear to be…yet. I actually hope they can stay private and avoid those short A-holes, the haters, and the knuckle draggers.

Private investments like this is how you stay private instead of going public like Tesla.

Not sure if this is why you brought it up, but they are close to releasing an alexa echo specifically designed to attach to your car’s dashboard – https://www.amazon.com/Introducing-Echo-Auto-first-your/dp/B0753K4CWG So while I’m not sure using alexa to drive your car is realistic – currently anyhow – having it built into Rivian as an option seems like a real possibility.

“We think that you might like to visit KFC instead” says Alexa because they have paid Amazon more $$$ than the competition.

Sorry, but Alexa, Siri and the rest are persona non-grata in my life.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

driver: Christine, take me to get real Chinese food.
Christine: Recalculating to “Panda Express”.

https://acarisnotarefrigerator.files.wordpress.com/2013/01/1958-plymouth-fury-christine.jpg

Will there be Rivian Prime versions that are a little cheaper, but come with Amazon branding inside and outside the car?

No just free shipping to your door.

Just imagine an Amazon flatbed showing up at your front door to deliver your new Rivian 2 days after you order!

My congratulations and condolences to Mr. Scaringe. His dream became one step closer to happening and his ability to control his future became one step further away. Good luck with the bean counters, analysts, Wall St, and the Fourth Estate. You know the answer to the question, “how do you make a little money in the auto business?”

What I most appreciate about Rivian is the clean, classically simple SUV and pick up truck design. Retro without being cute, attractive and understated. Thank you.

I wish Rivian great success.

Wait till they start sipping those electrons while driving on the freeway.

You’re looking at 600-700 Wh/m at 65mph speeds. That thing is shaped like the G-Class and you know that consumption will be crazy.

Sad to see Rivian has already acquired at least one basher. 🙁

Tesla is focused on energy efficiency. If Rivian takes a different path, more focused on utility, then there is certainly room in the growing BEV market for both approaches.

Let the market choose which it prefers. Who knows? Maybe both will succeed.

Go Rivian!

That is why battery packs will be in the 105-180 GWh range.
And it shaped more like a Range Rover. In size it is between SWB and LWB.

What I am most happy about is that Rivian will not be controlled by a Saudi company. Any Saudi of note has connections with the Saudi Royal Family and therefore Aramco.

ALJ was an earlier Rivian investor.
Rivian probably would not be as far along as they are without Saudi investment.

True. Rather they have got that $450M injection from a sourced not affiliated with the fossil fuel industry.

Now, Amazon is the largest single shareholder.

“Rivian Gets $700 Million Investment Led By Amazon”
—————————

Logical…. with plenty of forward strategic opportunities for both Amazon & Rivian.

Likely Amazon will at some pint acquire controlling interest in Rivian.

Look out Subaru … these guys are gunning for ya! Go Rivian!

That’s funny because all the mechanics are investing in Atlas.

Are you referring to Atlis, the company showing truck renderings with no actual product?

> all the mechanics

What do you mean by that?

Maybe you are invested in Atlis… altho I’d think if you were, then you’d know how to spell the name.

But only a fool would invest in a company like Faraday Future or Atlis; sham companies making absurdly big claims with nothing to back them up. “All hat and no cattle” companies.

The very antithesis of Rivian, a company which stayed in stealth mode until it had nearly all its ducks in a row!

Go Rivian!

So…does Rivian now have all the funds it needs to bring its trucks to the market?

Well, apparently Jeff bezos is worth ~$135 billion so he might have some more change to spare to get this show on the road.

Jeff Bezos isn’t the US Government, he won’t unconditionally fund Rivian for eternity, they will need to deliver (and I think they will).

At a minimum he will get a fleet of delivery vehicles that will eventually be semi/autonomous.

Amazon has already shown they have the correct mentality for very long term investment thinking. I think they are a much better match than somewhere like Sequoia Capitol or similar VC’s

Exactly Jeff Bezos has proven he has the stomach for traversing an endless valley of death for a long term pay off, like you said the ideal partner for an automotive start up.

Yeah, look at what he’s doing with Blue Origin, that venture won’t pay off for quite some time, but he keeps it going.

Exactly! How nice that Jeff Bezos is willing to make investments according to a long-term strategy, rather than the short-term thinking seen far too often these days on Wall Street. Would that the investor world had many, many more with that attitude!

It’s going to take more than$700 million to get a BEV pickup factory putting out products to scale that ICE pickups are going out the door and at $50,000-$60,000 a piece

The price is $70,000 and up (starting with $90,000 version), and I suspect they will get more investors. They are pretty advanced in their design already.

Design is one thing – manufacturing is another.

They are, and manufacturing is expensive. My point is they have working platforms, and I suspect lining up contracts for manucaturing, etc. I don’t look at it and go, that looks like a fairy tale, and they have been testing for some time using Ford and other cabs on their frame, etc. If you look at a company like Atlis with just a couple employees and some renderings of trucks, my confidence is low. Rivian has hundreds of employees and a realistic product. This doesn’t guarantee success, look at Faraday future. However, the Rivian product looks better and more realistic than FF and it seems like they have a real plan and will to make this happen.

Plus they already have a factory and have been hiring industry insiders with the right know how. 700M will help them get the factory up and running, or at least enough of that process to get to the next funding round. If Bezos/Amazon like how the fist 700M was spent I bet they get more.

I’m surprised you’d compare Rivian to FF. That’s much more of a contrast. FF never had a “realistic” pre-production vehicle, and it never had any sort of factory, let alone a full-scale auto assembly plant like Rivian does.

Furthermore, FF kept making absurdly over-the-top, impossible claims. FF bragged a great deal and accomplished almost nothing. Rivian is exactly the opposite!

Rivian looks to be getting close to production ready. So far as I can see, all they really need is to install the production line machinery and get that up and running. And it looks like, according to this article, that they just got most or all of the funding they need for that!

Go Rivian!

Apparently Rivian raised ~$450 million before this but $1.15 billion still isn’t a lot to bring a car to the market.

$1.15 billion is getting a lot closer to being sufficiently funded than any other EV startup in the U.S. since Tesla. I think around $1.5 billion should do it, especially as Rivian has been pretty frugal in spending its funds… unlike Tesla, which wasted a lot of money in its early years.

$700M from Amazon led fund raising round.
$450M from ALJ from previous round.
$200M from Standard Chartered Bank.
Undisclosed amount from Sumitomo Corp of America

According to Chicago Tribune Rivian has raised a total of $1.4B.

Tesla launched Model S with $400M including $50M for Fremont Factory.
Rivian got the Normal Illinois factory for $16M.

Startups tend to be much more capital efficient than legacy automakers.

Legacy automakers tend to have better fit and finish at launch.

I’m in the private investment industry. Once Rivian has this deal with Amazon, it is way easier to get additional funding from them at a future date. Since Amazon has such a good reputation, other companies will also invest. There is no downside for Rivian.

They also don’t need all of the money at once, spend this 700M well and like you say they will have no problem getting what else the need.

Rivian has already gotten a lot of investments in previous years. Certainly enough for them to buy their own abandoned auto assembly plant! That’s far more than Tesla had before it started selling its first model, the Roadster.

I dunno if $700 million is quite enough to install a full automotive production line in Rivian’s factory, but at the least it’s certainly going to go a very long way toward that!

Well there’s 100 million ICE vehicles sold a year and 2 billion on the road. So there’s plenty of need for manufacturers to build Electric Vehicles that take market share from ICE.
Tesla can’t build all the vehicles needed and another US company building EV’S hopefully in volume will be great.

What Rivian would be smart to do is do like Tesla, provide drive systems but keep GM at arms length from any control of the company, GM has a long track record of getting involved with competitors, making a mess of them and then walking away.
Amazon would be a far better choice than GM because they have no conflicts of interest where GM is one giant confict of interest.

This is GREAT. Someone really needs to take on the truck market. Trucks can really benefit from the massive torque of electric motors. And the fuel savings will be great.

The trouble is the range issue…with such terrible aerodynamics they’ll have trouble giving a good range without HUGE battery packs. That’s why I tend to think PHEVs are are better suited for trucks right now. That plus the ICE gives all the gearheads comfort. But I certainly may be very wrong if battery costs come down.

Having two drivetrains in a vehicle is intrinsically more expensive.
PHEVs will forever be dependent on government incentives.
And you still have to service ICE, even if at longer time intervals.
The market will show Pickup PHEV is a dead on arrival.
Even Workhorse is skipping PHEV to launch a BEV truck.

How many vehicles has RIVIAN produced so far? How do they hold up?
Let’s wait and tell how great they are after they get some vehicles out on the road. Can you buy one on Amazon yet?

They seem to have many platforms driving around hidden under existing pickup bodies (benefit with body on frame is it is easy to pickup a Ford F-series body and put it on your electric platform for test.

“Instant” mules.

I am more interested in the SUV. A truck with bed that is under 5′ is useless in my opinion.

It’s a huge market though. So many people by pickup trucks with those short beds.

So true – It goes against the grain from me personally. I enjoy having an 8ft bed for hauling but most pickup owners opt for more passenger room and shorter beds as shown in the Rivian prototype:

https://www.consumerreports.org/pickup-trucks/are-pickup-trucks-becoming-the-new-family-car/

EDIT: Whoops, replied to the wrong person.

The long bed vs. short bed debate over which is better has been going on since the 1950’s in the pickup world. It is a dumb debate, because people who want long beds buy long beds, the people who buy short beds buy short beds. There is a huge market for both. It is like debating whether a midsize or a full size passenger car EV is better. The answer is there is a market for both.

There is nothing wrong with any company starting out with an EV that will work for a huge number of current truck buyers, and then expand their model line later.

Yea, the SUV is killer.

Exactly, it’s a piece of cake to add a longer bed option later.

Yes, I think it is smart of Rivian to start out with a truck that has a cargo bed too short for a proper working pickup. That will tend to limit sales to those who won’t use it that much for hauling and towing, which hopefully will minimize complaints from those who will discover the shocking loss of range when hauling or towing heavy cargo or trailers.

As batteries continue to improve in future years, and as Rivian can afford to put larger capacity battery packs into their trucks, the hauling and towing capacity should improve. Offering a truck with a true pickup bed can wait for that.

Depends on what you want to do. For 8 foot material, having a two row cab makes it very long. For people who want to move things like pallets of material having a 4 x ~5 foot bed is enough. Since pallets are the most common means of moving material around the world, support for the standard 4 x 4 foot pallet is useful. You can get landscape material or warehouse supplies for running a business like a restaurant loaded and unloaded by forklift.

Note that most midsize trucks don’t support a 4 foot wide flat bed to begin with.

For example, the new Ford Ranger only fits 44″ on the bed floor.

Yup. The R1T, with a bed too short for a proper pickup, is aimed more at the “urban cowboy” than anybody who needs a working truck.

But the “urban cowboy” market is certainly a significant portion of the upscale pickup market… or more precisely, the SUT (Sport Utility Truck) market, since again the R1T isn’t really a pickup. I think there is a great deal of market potential for Rivian to exploit, certainly far more than they can possibly supply in the first couple of years of production.

Go Rivian!

Rivian is only looking for 20k R1T pickup buyers per year for the first two years. Honda sells about 30k Ridgelines per year in the US. Fully ramped up at Normal Illinois Rivian wants to sell 200k vehicles per year.

I think they can sell 200k R1S SUVs per year. They also plan to sell in Europe and Asia.
They are also planning a smaller SUV and Subaru WRX STI rally type vehicle.

Business Insider “Tesla challenger Rivian just announced….” So tired of the crap that publication throws out there – challenger? Rivian is a totally different vehicle and a different market segment until we see the Tesla PU. Welcome Rivian – lets get this party started! – and this is from a dedicated Tesla enthusiast.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

Go Rivian, go destroy the ICE world!!!

……or something like Mister G always wrote……..LMAO

Maybe this investment in Rivian will mean Amazon will go to Chicago since NYC is out.

haha! Hopefully it will turn out better than the $2 million missing in Florida.

What? Are you saying that times were rough for car makers in 2009? Wow! What a shocker!!

Do you know who else hit the brick wall of the economic crash in the automotive industry in 2009? Two of the “Big Three” US car makers, and a whole bunch of car brands world wide. Saturn, gone. Hummer, gone. Saab, gone. Etc, etc.

I’m not so sure it is accurate to use the term “shady” just because your company fails right in the middle of a global downturn not seen in most people’s lifetimes, right when the entire credit industry was frozen solid and people couldn’t get car loans.

Everyone in the investment world (except folks intent on remaining blind to reality) know this virtually guarantees Rivian will have all the funding they need to get into production. Amazon is a long-term thinking company who isn’t going to get into this for 700 million just to walk away. This is very good news.

Yep!! I’m sure there were some hastily called meetings at Ford/GM/Ram about this

Indeed! Given that Rivian already has ownership of a former auto assembly plant, and to all appearances has two solid near-production prototype vehicles, this new funding appears to be all they need to transition to actual production. Or if not quite sufficient by itself, the very fact that Amazon.com has shown such confidence will enable Rivian to get the additional funds it needs.

This is one of the happiest stories I’ve ever seen at InsideEVs.
😀 😀 😀

Go Rivian!

Tesla detractors are already lauding this as serious trouble for Tesla of course, right on cue. If Rivian goes public though, then the shorts will turn around and short them, claiming that raising money and cash burn and debt are inherently bad and never good or necessary. So goes their circular logic.

Sadly, we’re already seeing a couple of Rivian bashing comments in this thread, even before any IPO attracts short-selling trolls like the ones which infest discussions of Tesla.

I guess some people just can’t stand the thought of an EV startup succeeding.
(◣_◢)

I expressed skepticism just a few days ago, in a previous article here on the same subject, that Rivian has any tech that Amazon.com is interested in. Well, I hadn’t done my homework. Turns out Rivian is making claims about autonomous (self-driving) vehicles, and I can easily see that Amazon.com would be interested in that tech for delivery vehicles, and for over-the-road shipping.

I’m very, very glad to see Rivian get such major support in terms of investing. This will go a long way to making Rivian one of the small percentages of startups which actually succeed!

Go Rivian!

Upon reading that Rivian’s plant is in Normal, I had a hunch and it was confirmed:

Rivian purchased the old “Diamond Star Motors” Chrysler-Mitsubishi joint venture plant that used to make the Eclipse/Talon/Laser, among other cars (Mitsubishi later bought out Chrysler and ran it solo). Good to see both the old NUMMI plant and the old DSM plant at the forefront of the EV market.

You’re just regurgitating the very biased Avera/ Rivian bashing that Florida newspapers engaged in, after Avera successfully completed its contract with the State: To build a working EV prototype, and employ some hundreds of Floridians while doing so.

Far better for Rivian to move to Michigan if that was part of its path to success, than remain in Florida and go bankrupt.

BTW — Avera only changed its name because Hyundai sued them over the brand name, not because the Avera/ Rivian owners are ashamed of their past… as you are trying to insinuate.

https://www.cnet.com/roadshow/news/avera-motors-changes-name-to-rivian-automotive/

Faraway future again

I dont think so
Rivian has 750 employees and four factories out there,running prototypes and all financing they need..
ICEholes be running scared

The truck looks great and I like the advancement in technology. But, seriously, do something with the grill. The lights look like an Edsel coming at you.

I am a Model Y type of person. I hope Tesla can deliver affordable CUV.