Michigan based electric vehicle maker Rivian has attracted a ton of interest and investment since debuting its R1T electric pickup and R1S electric SUV at this year’s North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
The company recently got another steep cash injection of $1.3 billion thanks to Tesla shareholder T. Rowe Price, along with Amazon and General Motors‘ crosstown rivals at Ford Motor Company.
This new round of investments comes after Rivian raised $700 million in a round of funding led by Amazon back in February and another $500 million from Ford in April. Automotive marketing and retail company Cox Automotive also dumped $350 million into the company back in September.
In a statement, Rivian CEO R.J. Scaringe said this latest round of investments “demonstrates confidence in our team, products, technology and strategy,” and said the company is “extremely excited to have the support from such strong shareholders.”
Rivian will manufacture its R1T and R1S models at a former Mitsubishi plant in Normal, Illinois starting next year. Customer deliveries of the vehicles are expected to start toward the end of the year. Both the R1T truck and R1S SUV will have a starting price of $69,000. Both will get up to 400 miles of range from a single charge, depending on the model chosen, and will have a max towing capacity of around 11,000 lbs.
In addition to its own products, Rivian is also developing a new, unnamed electric vehicle for Ford and is working on an electric delivery van to be used by Amazon. The e-commerce giant has ordered 100,000 of the full-size electric delivery vans, which will hit US roads in 2021.
The Rivian R1T is seen as one of the strongest potential competitors to the new Tesla Cybertruck. Ford will also compete in the electric pickup space with its upcoming battery powered F-150, while GM is working on an electric pickup of its own, too. It’s not clear if GM’s electric pickup will be a Chevrolet, GMC or if it will fall under another brand. GM has said its electric pickup will go on sale in the fall of 2021 – about one year after sales of the Rivian R1T are set to begin.
GM had previously approached Rivian about potentially becoming a minority stakeholder in the company, however talks broke down as the deal would not had allowed Rivian to license its technology to other automakers.
Source: The New York Times