Upstart electric-truck maker Rivian raises $2.5 billion in new backing

The new funds, from Amazon and others, should help bring Rivian’s electric pickup truck and SUV to market next year.

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Electric-truck maker Rivian announced it has raised new backing of $2.5 billion to help fund the rollout of its first line of vehicles next year.

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Electric-truck maker Rivian announced it has raised new backing of $2.5 billion to help fund the rollout of its first line of vehicles next year.

Investors led by T. Rowe Price also included Soros Fund Management, Coatue, Fidelity Management and Research, Baron Capital Group, and BlackRock. Amazon, which has pledged to buy 100,000 electric delivery vans from Rivian by 2030 to reduce its impact on the climate, also added to its prior investment, Rivian said.

Rivian CEO RJ Scaringe is planning to sell three models starting next year, a bit later than originally planned. The forthcoming R1T all-electric pickup truck, priced at $69,000, and R1S all-electric SUV, priced at $72,500, both have ranges of up to 400 miles on a single charge. The Amazon delivery vans will incorporate the retailer’s logistics management system right into the dashboard display.

Still, the well-funded startup faces many challenges before its vehicles hit the road. Tesla, which had been staying away from the midsize electric truck market, unveiled a pickup truck in November dubbed the Cybertruck to go on sale starting next year. And other competitors in the electric delivery truck space include Nikola Motor, Workhorse Group, and efforts from some traditional carmakers like Volvo and Daimler. Rivian also could suffer from unexpected manufacturing or supply chain glitches as it works toward bringing its very first products to market.

The new funding is aimed at avoiding any such hiccups. “With all three launches occurring in 2021, our teams are working hard to ensure our vehicles, supply chain, and production systems are ready for a robust production ramp-up,” Scaringe said in a statement. “We are grateful for the strong investor support that helps enable us to focus on execution of our products.”

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