February 5, 2023

Rivian confirmed this week that it has pushed back the launch of its smaller, more affordable R2 model line to 2026, versus the previously announced 2025.
Rivian hopes to start production as early as 2024 at the $5 billion Georgia plant, which is expected to make 400,000 vehicles annually. It also confirmed in May that the R2 family, which will be focused on affordability, may not be the first model to be built at the Georgia plant, but that the plant will be where the R2 is first built .

As the well-funded company’s remaining cash shrank to $13.8 billion from $15.4 billion in the quarter, the move could be an attempt to collect some expenses.

Under Canvas Carbon Conscious Camp Using Rivian Waypoint Chargers – Moab
Additionally, the company may be looking for some leverage on the asset, which is looking more expensive given the recent news. Last month, a Georgia judge rejected a proposed tax break for Rivian, ruling that the development agency overseeing the project had failed to demonstrate that the factory was “sound, reasonable and viable” and ruled that Rivian should pay regular property taxes because of the level of control over ownership.
“We continue to work with the state of Georgia and the Joint Development Authority and anticipate launching our R2 platform in 2026,” Rivian said in his letter to shareholders. “We anticipate that the R2 platform will open up a global market opportunity for Rivian and look forward to the early development work that is underway.”
Rivian Amazon electric delivery truck
Rivian Amazon electric delivery truck
Rivian Amazon electric delivery truck
It’s also not the first time Rivian has hinted at its global potential. In 2021, the company proposed the possibility of a future European factory and the potential to manufacture its own batteries. Separately, in September the company announced its intention to form a joint venture with Mercedes-Benz to build electric vans for Europe. Rivian already builds its computerized electric vans in the US, with customer (and financier) Amazon picking up 100,000 of them over time.
Rivian has yet to tease or define the R2, which could include a crossover and other variants, but huge price hikes followed by the decision to drop its most affordable R1 versions have already cleared the way for the R2. And while the R1 lineup might be a little too big for Europe, an R2 would probably fit right in.

Rivian builds first customer example of R1T – September 2021
The company manufactured 14,317 vehicles (vans and R1 models combined) at its Illinois plant through the third quarter of 2022, but maintained its 2022 production target of 25,000 vehicles. That speaks for a lot of confidence in the production ramp-up, since 10,683 vehicles have to be manufactured in the fourth quarter of the year alone.
Demand remains very strong as growing reservation banks suggest. Rivian also confirmed as part of its quarterly update that it now has over 114,000 orders for its R1S and R1T combined as of November 7th.
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