Up and coming electric vehicle company Rivian expects its R1T electric pickup truck and R1S electric SUV to carry a lower starting price than it originally thought.
The Michigan-based company previously indicated the R1T would be priced from $69,000 for a mid-range version, while a comparably equipped R1S SUV would start at about $72,000. Speaking to Reuters at a promotional event held in San Francisco this week, Rivian founder and chief executive officer R.J. Scaringe said the company should be able to undercut those prices, with plans to offer an R1T with an estimated 300 miles of range for under $69,000.
The range-topping R1T and R1S models will feature four electric motors, each mounted on an individual wheel, and will produce roughly 750 horsepower. The company is also promising a model that will be able to travel up to 400 miles between charges. It’s not yet clear how much these higher-end models will cost.
Rivian’s slight price adjustment for the mid-range models could be a sign the company is expecting steep competition from offerings like the Tesla Cybertruck, electric Ford F-150 and General Motors‘ upcoming new electric pickup truck. The Rivian will have the advantage of being first to market, though. While Tesla, Ford and GM won’t have their battery-electric trucks on the road until 2021, Rivian is planning to deliver the first R1T vehicles to customers before the end of the year.
Rivian’s lofty goals of competing with Tesla and established automakers like GM are bolstered by its strong backing. The company received $1.3 billion in backing in December, which came from T. Rowe Price, Amazon and Ford Motor Company., among others, which followed a $700 million round of funding led by Amazon in February 2019. Ford also injected $500 million into the company in April of last year, which has resulted in a powertrain partnership between the companies, while Cox Automotive lined its coffers with another $350 million in September.
GM is expected to release new details on its electric pickup in a commercial that will air during coverage of Superbowl LIV this weekend. Rumors allege the battery-electric truck will revive the Hummer nameplate in some capacity and will be positioned as an ultra-capable, premium off-roader. The truck will go into production at the automaker’s Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly plant in late 2021.