Customers eagerly awaiting the first products from electric-vehicle startup Rivian will have to wait a little while longer.
The company first presented its R1T pickup truck and R1S SUV at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show. Deliveries were originally due to start around the end of 2020 but the pandemic ended up pushing the deadline to July 2021.
Rivian CEO RJ Scaringe has now told reservation holders in a letter that R1T deliveries are now due to start in September and R1S deliveries shortly after. A copy of the letter has been reproduced on the Rivian Owners Forum.
Scaringe pointed to “compounding” fallout from pandemic-related disruptions as the cause for the delay, including the recent semiconductor chip shortage.
Rivian CEO and founder RJ Scaringe
Both vehicles will be built at a plant in Normal, Illinois, which previously built Mitsubishis. The company has already built hundreds of prototypes there and has been punishing them in extreme situations to ensure they are as capable as advertised. Rivian will also build delivery vans at the site for Amazon.
The R1T and R1S share a common skateboard platform. Buyers will choose from three different battery pack sizes, the largest of which will be 180 kilowatt-hours with a stated range of more than 400 miles. The three-row SUV will offer seating for up to seven, while the pickup will seat up to five passengers. Both will be capable of towing more than 7,000 pounds, feature up to four motors, and be able to tackle off-road adventures.
Only special Launch Editions will be available initially. These will be priced from $73,000 for the R1T Launch Edition and $75,500 for the R1S Launch Edition. Those prices don’t include destination. More affordable models priced below $70,000 will be available at a later date.
For peace of mind, Rivian will offer its vehicles with impressive warranties. There will include a 5-year/60,000-mile comprehensive warranty for the complete vehicle and an 8-year/175,000-mile warranties for both the battery and drivetrain. Rivian also guarantees the battery will retain at least 70% of its capacity for eight years.