Amazon prepares Rivian electric vehicles for delivery in 100 cities

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Diving brief:

  • Thousands of Amazon electric vehicles produced by Rivian are expected to start delivering packages to more than 100 cities this year, the company said. in a Thursday blog post.
  • Hundreds of vehicles are already on the road and have made deliveries in Baltimore, Chicago, Dallas, Kansas City, Nashville, Phoenix, San Diego, Seattle and St. Louis, in addition to other unspecified cities.
  • Amazon plans to have 100,000 Rivian electric vehicles making deliveries by the end of 2030. The electric vehicles will help the company save millions of metric tons of carbon annually and advance its goal of reaching emissions net zero carbon emissions in its operations by 2040, by post .

Overview of the dive:

Rivian’s bespoke vehicles for Amazon are finally hitting the road after a long collaboration with the e-commerce giant, in addition to supply chain hurdles sweeping the automotive industry. Amazon first announced its electric vehicle order from Rivian in 2019.

Development of the vehicle’s design involved “a large amount of iteration and refinement with Amazon” and driver feedback, said RJ Scaringe, founder, president and CEO of Rivian. in an earnings call in May. Amazon previously tested Rivian vehicles in pre-production, delivering more than 430,000 packages and racking up more than 90,000 miles in testing, according to the blog.

“We are delighted to have experienced this [and] have made a whole host of improvements over the last year, so the deliveries that are happening right now are going to start to ramp up, and you’re going to start seeing a lot more hopefully coming in all our neighborhoods to deliver packages,” Scaringe said.

Meeting the needs of Amazon and other customers will require ramping up production at Rivian’s electric vehicle manufacturing plant in Normal, Illinois. Rivian said in a press release dated July 6 that it is on track to produce 25,000 vehicles for the year. It will, however, need to increase its current production rate to get there – the company has produced a total of 6,954 vehicles in Q1 and Q2.

Rivian described increasing production as his top priority this year in a First Quarter Letter to Shareholderswhile highlighting supply chain challenges such as semiconductor sourcing as a production bottleneck.

“Since March 31, 2022, we have been forced to stop production for longer periods than planned, resulting in the loss of approximately a quarter of the planned production time due to supplier constraints,” the company said. letter.

Rivian’s last mile delivery vehicles will only be available to Amazon for four years after first delivery, according to Rivian’s 10-K. However, exclusivity agreements between EV manufacturers and major customers are not unique to Amazon. EV startup Canoo cannot design, manufacture or sell EVs to Amazon under its deal to supply 4,500 EVs to Walmart.

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