Rivian has finally made its first electric pickup truck, the RT1 – that’s after the US EV start-up had twice postponed the start of deliveries. According to CEO RJ Scaringe, the first customer vehicle has now rolled off the production line.
Scaringe confirmed the news on Twitter: “After months of manufacturing pre-production models, the first customer vehicle left the assembly line in Normal this morning,” the CEO tweeted. “The combined efforts of our team have made this possible. Can’t wait to hand the cars over to our customers.”
However, Scaringe did not specify when exactly the first customers will receive their R1Ts – in ‘Rivian Blue’ colour, according to the photos. First, the start of deliveries was postponed from June to July, then later to September. So Rivian still has about two weeks to keep to this schedule.
Meanwhile, according to a local media report, Rivian is pushing ahead with negotiations with the British government about the possible construction of its European plant near Bristol. If the plant in Somerset is indeed built, it could create more than 5,000 jobs there – and seven to eight times as many jobs within the supply chain. This is reported by the portal Somerset Live.
The Gravity industrial estate in the county was already mentioned as a possible location for the European plant at the beginning of August, but at that time the sources still referred to the early stage of talks. Somerset Live, citing a source familiar with the matter, now writes that the talks about the plant are “on a knife-edge”, as Rivian is also considering two locations within the EU. An EU site could send an important signal to investors ahead of the upcoming IPO.
However, the British government is also keen to win the project. It would be “the most significant car deal in Britain since the 1980s”, the source said. If the plant were built on the Gravity industrial estate, the hall would probably become the largest single building in the UK. According to the report, another visit by Rivian managers to the UK is planned for next week.
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