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The Rivian R1T Electric Pickup Truck Debut At LA Auto Show Left Investors Surprised

Image Source: Miro Vrlik Photography / Shutterstock

It has taken auto maker startup Rivian nine years to deliver on a promise to make an all-electric pick-up truck. It would eventually be availed at the 2018 L.A. Auto Show. Good things come in twos. Rivian brought around the R1T pickup truck and its companion, the R1S SUV.

The R1T pickup truck is by no means a sluggish achiever. Boasting of up to 400-mile-plus driving range, 3-second 0-60 times and 11,000-pound towing capacity, this is a rather powerful off-roader.

It might have taken the company quite a period to see the dream hit the tarmac but the wait is proving to have been worth all that trouble. It is also soundly grounded, going by its background.

Rivian is the the brainchild of 35-year old R.J. Scaringe. Scaringe earned a master’s and doctorate in mechanical engineering from MIT, where he worked on the research team at the Sloan Automotive Laboratory.

The company has made several enviable leaps so far including the purchase of a 2.4-million-square-foot former Mitsubishi factory in Normal, Illinois for a reported $16 million. The company allegedly anticipates to invest more than $40 million into the plant by 2022, with production set to commence there next year.

This sounds solid enough to ensure that Rivian births more vehicles in the near future. Mark Vinnels, the company’s executive director of engineering and programs further said that their investors have so far been of great support to their ambitions.

“We’ve got a really strong source of money, financing for the company is solid … good investors who understand motorcars and are in it for the long game, and don’t want to make a quick return and understand that putting cars into production is super difficult and costs a lot of money,” he said.

In mid 2018, was reported that the company had secured a $200 million loan to begin production and had managed to raise this amount to about $450 million It is also alleged that investors who have bought into the company include Sumitomo Corporation of America and the investment arm of Saudi company Abdul Latif Jameel. Besides, the company has received state and local tax incentives in Illinois.

Image Source: Miro Vrlik Photography / Shutterstock

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