For years, startup EV manufacturers and established automakers alike have tried to out-Tesla Tesla. But for the most part, Tesla has run the EV market entirely to itself. Now, however, everyone is figuring out how to compete. For establishment automakers like General Motors (aka general motors), they’ve invested into EVs and are preparing a massive EV onslaught around their single Ultium modular battery and motor setup. For startups, it’s a little more difficult, and the only manufacturers that have been successful have done so by doing things their own way. Nowhere is this more obvious than Rivian, whose R1T pickup and R1S SUV are all about exploring nature. This strategy of standing out and doing things differently is working, as Rivian have just announced a $2.65 billion investment.
Rivian says their latest round of funding came primarily from T. Rowe Price. Other investors include Fidelity Management and Research Company, Amazon’s Climate Pledge Fund, Coatue and D1 Capital Partners, plus other more minor new and existing investors.
This new funding comes at a critical time for the brand, as 2021 will likely be its most important year yet. Rivian will launch the R1T and R1S this summer to pre-order holders, and they have 100,000 delivery trucks on order from Amazon. R1T deliveries are slated to begin June 2021 for Launch Edition models, while the R1S Launch Edition is coming slightly later in August 2021. The delivery vans will begin rolling out late 2021, with the full fleet expected by 2024.
A year from now, Rivian will launch the lower trim versions of the R1S and R1T, the Adventure and Explore. Pre-orders are currently open for these models, while pre-orders for the R1S and R1T Launch Edition are full. After that, Rivian will probably be content with getting the initial lineup established before rolling out additional models, whatever they may be.
With this latest round of investment, Rivian is valued at $27.6 billion, more than the $25 billion valuation that was previously estimated prior to securing this round of funding.