Why Rivian Meeting Its Electric SUV Goal Isn’t That Impressive

The EV maker delivered the first two R1S SUVs, but not to just any customers

The Rivian R1S SUV in blue sitting in a driveway. The EV startup announced it had made the first two deliveries of the vehicle in December 2021.
The R1S SUV is officially here! Well, sort of.

In many ways, Rivian doesn’t want to be like Tesla. It’s already doing a good job at that, as the EV upstart has already started delivering its electric truck while the Cybertruck is still nowhere to be found. And in the delay department, while Tesla has been known to overpromise and underdeliver, after a few hiccups Rivian seems to be committed to keeping its promises; last week, the company made good on its goal of delivering its second model, the R1S SUV, by the end of the year.

However, a closer look at the fine print shows Rivian is having many of the same problems that have plagued other electric vehicle startups.

For one, the two official deliveries they made of the R1S did not go to just any normal customers. They went to CEO R.J. Scaringe and CFO Claire McDonough. As no other deliveries have been announced, it seems as though the company was intent on being able to say they began producing the SUV in 2021, even if this in-house delivery isn’t what most people would consider as crossing that finish line. As the company wrote on Twitter, they’ll be “ramping production over the next few months on [the] way to full volume production.”

But it appears Rivian needed some good news to go along with a disappointing end to 2021. While it had a blockbuster stock market debut in November, things have cooled off since its first earnings report as a public company was released. As Bloomberg reported, Rivian said it will be “a few hundred vehicles short” of its goal of producing 1,200 vehicles this year. 

That’s not to say it’s all doom and gloom for the EV maker heading into 2022. As Bloomberg also noted, the company is planning to open a new factory in Georgia which would drastically increase production capabilities (right now they have one factory in Normal, IL). Additionally, the first “revenue-producing” delivery vans the company is making for Amazon are expected to be delivered this month. 

Hey, now there’s a delivery goal they can be proud of, no asterisks required.

Win the Ultimate Formula 1® Crypto.com Miami Grand Prix Experience

Want the F1 experience of a lifetime? Here’s your chance to win tickets to see Turn 18 Grandstand, one of Ultimate Formula 1® Crypto.com Miami Grand Prix’s most premier grandstands!