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Rivian Is Aiming To Do SUVs & Trucks What Tesla Did With Sedans, But Can They Compete?

The new R1T truck and R1S SUV from Rivian are undoubtedly beautifully designed, both starting around $70K with driving range of 300 miles, BUT can the R1T truck compete with Ford's all-electric F-150 Lightning? Can the R1S SUV compete with Tesla's Model Y, Lucid Motors' Gravity SUV, or the Polestar 3 SUV?

In this new, exciting era of vehicle electrification there are many players, as there should be. You can't have an EV market without several manufacturers producing a variety of cars, each with different performance specifications and pricing, all of which is designed to meet the needs of the different consumer profiles. Without question, the true volume-sales winners in this space will be the manufacturers who are able to produce the best performance and affordability (the best bang for your buck).

Now consider the trucks & SUV category of the automobile market, the most valuable slice of which Ford has dominated for 44 years with it's F-150 truck. Can Rivian's new R1T truck compete with the new, all-electric Ford F-150 Lightning? The R1T comes with an approximate $30,000 premium compared to the F-150 Lightnings base model which starts at $39,974 and a similar performance spec.

Everything said, it feels like Rivian is hardly targeting General Motors or the Ford Motor Company, despite advertising their vehicles as 'Ford Tough'. Instead, the California based company is setting its sights on growing like electric vehicle juggernaut, Tesla, which has seen its valuation shoot up from about $75B in 2019 to almost $725B today! Rivian is rumored to go public via IPO with an $80B valuation.

Rivian recently raised $2.5B from T. Rowe Price and Amazon, whom has already ordered 100,000 delivery vehicles to be fulfilled by the end of 2030.

The question still remains whether or not Rivian will be valued at $80B and if so, how is that justified? As more information comes out leading up to the IPO, investors will need to be mindful of:

  1. How much money has been raised to-date and how much the company has on-hand?

  2. More information about their commercial vehicle business, and which other strategic partners are behind the curtain. Mind you, most of the EV startups are manufacturing just consumer-focused vehicles.

  3. Rivian's vehicle production milestones, the company's internal capabilities needed to manufacturer their vehicles. Rivian has already overpromised and underdelivered a few times to-date (which you can only get away with as a private company... once you have shareholders, accountability is heightened).

  4. What's Rivian's charging network? Nothing has been announced to-date.

  5. Does the company have proprietary technology that has longterm value?

  6. What other vehicles are in the pipeline?

Our first impressions of the all-electric 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning truck. Can Ford continue their 44 year truck sales reign? -We think so!

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