Rivian EV: Production Delays, NDA & Delivery Status Update

Rivian EV: Production Delays, NDA & Delivery Status Update
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Rivian is a relatively new entrant into the electric vehicle (EV) market. The company has been making waves with its R1T, an all-electric pickup truck that promises to revolutionize the industry. However, there have been some issues with production and delivery of the vehicles. This article will look at what we know about Rivian's current situation and how it may affect customers who have pre-ordered one of their vehicles.

It appears that Rivian has chosen to prioritize deliveries to employees and allies first before shipping out to everyday retail customers. This makes sense as these individuals are likely more familiar with the product and can provide valuable feedback on any potential issues or hiccups. It also seems like they may be required to report any problems they encounter so that they can be addressed before being shipped out to non-ally customers.

At this point, no one on this forum has actually placed an order yet. A pre-order "reservation" does not commit either party to anything until payment is made and accepted by Rivian. Reports suggest that those who have placed orders have received their vehicles within weeks. This is a good sign for those looking to buy a R1T soon.

This news is understandably frustrating for many people. Rivian claims to have the capability to build 200 units per week but why keep them parked in the factory if they could be delivered? Additionally, owners seem bound by some sort of NDA which prevents them from talking openly about their experiences with the vehicle.

It's important to understand that this process has always operated in this way and is nothing new. Rivian has already started delivering vehicles and given their manufacturing phase, exact delivery dates cannot be predicted. Launch Edition and other pre-order holders have been provided rough delivery windows and when your number comes up you will be contacted for finalizing the order, arranging payment, trade-in, financing, etc.

The next milestone coming up is that those first LE pre-order holders were told their delivery will be in March-April 2021. If everything goes according to plan then everyone else should expect their cars shortly after that date depending on how fast the ramp-up progresses.

It's worth noting that most EV manufacturers are facing similar delays due to COVID/chip shortages/labor shortages and other mitigating circumstances. Tesla has had to postpone the CT and Roadster multiple times while Model S and X saw almost 1.5-2 year delay between 2020 and 2022 with estimated delivery of January 2023 if ordered today. Therefore, it's unfair to single out Rivian for failing harder than others when they are all struggling under similar conditions.

Finally, reports indicate that around 72k-90k people have pre-ordered a R1T so far which is great news for the company. Hopefully, Rivian will continue to deliver on its promise of providing revolutionary EVs in the near future!

Who has a unique relationship with Rivian?

There is one member who has some sort of unique relationship with Rivian (not a direct employee but not an everyday retail customer either) who occasionally posts regarding his R1T.

What is the process for placing an order?

Rivian doesn't take actual orders unless they are able to deliver them. If you understand what you're signing up for before you send them money, you will have more realistic expectations. That is true of just about everything.

Are employees with stock options the best allies?

Yes, employees with stock options are the best allies, better than us enthusiasts 🍻 I speculate that maybe they even have a clause in their contract that compels them to report each and every deficiency / hiccup so that the most egregious rarer issues are caught before the first car goes out to a non-ally customer.

Is Rivian capable of building vehicles?

Rivian is delivering vehicles, and given that their manufacturing is in the early ramp-up phase they can't predict exactly when you will get yours, but Launch Edition and other pre-order holders have been given rough delivery windows - when your number comes up you will be contacted to finalize the order, arrange payment, trade-in, financing, delivery date, etc. The next milestone coming up is that those first LE pre-order holders were told their delivery will be in March-April.

How long will it take for everyone else to receive their vehicle?

How long it takes for everyone else will depend on how fast the ramp-up progresses. My R1T has a delivery window of May-June, and I'm cautiously optimistic that I will get it then. If you just placed your pre-order, then there are at least 70,000 people ahead of you (as of December). I don't think anyone can do anything but guess as to how long it will take for all of those people to get their cars.

Why does the media seem so benign towards Rivian?

It's not "news", it's the way the process has always operated. Anyone who has been paying attention to just about any manufacturer (automotive or otherwise), have seen unprecedented delays due to COVID/chip shortages/labor shortages, etc. You seem to have an issue with Rivian, yet ignore the fact that most other EV manufacturers are struggling as much as Rivian is.

How many preorders does Rivian have?

Last estimates I heard were in the 72k-90k range (as of December). That's a lot of cars to build, and it's going to take time. Rivian is doing their best to keep up with the demand, but they are still in the early stages of ramp-up.

Is there any way to speed up the process?

Unfortunately, no. The only thing that can be done is to wait for Rivian to get their production line running smoothly and efficiently. They are working hard on this and have made great progress so far, but it will still take some time before everyone who has preordered a vehicle receives theirs.