Rivian Might Have A Problem Keeping Up With Demand

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Can the EV startup ramp up production quickly enough to satisfy demand?

Not every promising EV startup manages to get to the point where vehicles start rolling off the production line, but Rivian has done it. The first Rivian R1T pickup was produced in September, and the company aims to have delivered 1,000 R1T pickups and R1S SUVs before the end of the year. Although it's great to see the company getting the ball rolling, it's going to have to dramatically increase production numbers next year. That's because Rivian's pre-order numbers have been revealed in a new post shared on Rivian Owners Forum. To cut a long story short, Rivian's pre-order backlog is significant.

2022 Rivian R1T Truck Front View Driving Rivian
2022 Rivian R1T Truck Rear View Driving Rivian

According to information on the forum, Rivian recently disclosed a pre-order backlog of 55,400 R1T and R1S vehicles to investors. The plan is to deliver these vehicles by the end of 2023. Although that number can't compete with the 100,000 pre-orders Ford received for the F-150 Lightning, it's impressive for a new company.

Of course, all the pre-orders in the world mean very little if they can't be matched by a production plant that can keep pace. That's a tall order considering recent news that deliveries of some R1S models were pushed back to May 2022 at the earliest, with some customers saying their delivery date was updated to as late as September 2022.

2022 Rivian R1T Truck Driving Front Angle Rivian
2022 Rivian R1T Truck Open Hood Rivian
2022 Rivian R1T Truck Side View Rivian
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Rivian's new battery plant situated east of Atlanta will help the company to ramp up production, but this plant has yet to be built.

"Rivian needs to ramp quickly and effectively to materialize as a serious long-term contender," said Baird Equity Research analyst George Gianarikas when speaking to investors. However, Joseph Spak from RBC Capital Markets said that although it won't all be smooth sailing for Rivian, he expects the company to hit its production targets.

Some analysts predict that Rivian will only turn an operating profit in 2025.

2022 Rivian R1S SUV Front Angle View Rivian
2022 Rivian R1S SUV Rear Angle View Rivian
2022 Rivian R1S SUV Badge Rivian
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