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Rivian delays electric pickup to summer 2021

Rivian has clarified the timeline for the R1T electric pickup truck and R1S electric SUV and the vehicles are delayed a little longer than expected.

Earlier this year, we reported on how the pandemic pushed Rivian’s first vehicle deliveries from late 2020 to 2021.

While the automaker confirmed the delay into next year, they wouldn’t clarify how far into 2021 they plan to deliver the new vehicles.

Now Rivian has issued an update to reservation holders with a clear timeline:

  • R1T deliveries will begin June 2021
  • R1S deliveries will begin August 2021

The automaker says that it feels comfortable announcing the timeline after officially running its pilot production line this week:

“This week at our plant in Normal, IL, the work of thousands of Rivian team members comes together as our pilot production line begins running.”

A while back, Rivian bought Mitsubishi’s shuttered factory in Normal, Illinois and they have been retrofitting it for electric vehicle production.

Rivian added in a message to reservation holders today:

“Keeping our team safe while making progress has been our top priority over these past few months. We look forward to sharing more updates soon, including details on key vehicle features, the date you’ll be able to configure your R1T or R1S, as well as our plans for our charging network.”

Last month, Electrek reported on Rivian’s plan to build the ‘Rivian Adventure Network‘, a new fast-charging network.

Rivian has previously announced that it is sticking to its original timeline of 2021 for the first electric delivery vans for Amazon.

Based on the specs released at the launch in 2018, the R1T is equipped with 4 electric motors, each a 147 kW power capacity at the wheel, while the total power output can be configured to different levels from 300 kW to 562 kW (input to gearbox).

The different power levels match different choices of battery packs, which are another impressive feature since they have the highest capacity of any other passenger electric vehicle out there: 105 kWh, 135 kWh, and 180 kWh.

Rivian says that it will translate to “230+ miles, 300+ miles, and 400+ miles” of range on a full charge.

They’re talking about a charge rate of up to 160 kW at fast-charging stations and an 11-kW onboard charger for level 2 charging.

It has a towing capacity with a trailer weight rating of 5,000 kg – that’s 11,000 lbs.

Rivian announced that the vehicle will start at $69,000 before incentives, but after Tesla announced the Cybertruck with similar specs for much cheaper, the company said it will lower its price.

Electrek’s Take

We thought for a while that Rivian might end up first to market with an electric pickup truck, but this delay is longer than we anticipated.

Now it puts down around the same time or just before electric pickup trucks from Tesla, Ford, and GM.

The competition is going to be fierce, but it is going to be an exciting time for the segment in the US.

Honestly, I can’t wait. This type of competition for the most lucrative auto segment going electric will be fascinating to cover.

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