Electric vehicle startup Rivian continues to go from strength to strength.
After managing to raise $13.7 billion from an initial public offering in November, the company is now preparing to build its second vehicle plant.
Rivian in a shareholder letter issued on Thursday said it has selected the state of Georgia for the new plant which is to have an annual capacity of 400,000 vehicles, or double the capacity of the existing plant in Normal, Illinois. The former Mitsubishi plant, which Rivian acquired in 2016, is home to the R1T pickup truck, R1S SUV and EDV (Electric Delivery Van).
Rivian has earmarked $5 billion for the Georgia plant, which be a new site located about an hour east of Atlanta, and the company plans to start construction of the site in mid-2022. The first vehicles should be in production sometime in 2024, Rivian said.
Rivian didn't say what vehicles would be built at the new site. However, CEO R.J. Scaringe in 2019 said the company was looking to have up to six vehicles by 2025, one of which is thought to be a performance-oriented crossover. And in 2020 he said the company would launch vehicles smaller than the full-size R1T and R1S to cater to tastes in China and Europe, where Rivian plans to expand starting in 2022.
Rivian has also said that it plans to launch additional models based on its commercial vehicle platform underpinning the EDV. The next is expected to be a smaller van that Rivian plans to market to commercial customers.
Rivian already has a lot of orders for its existing models to fulfil, though. The company said in its letter that it has racked up 71,000 pre-orders for the R1T and R1S in the U.S. and Canada. The company also has 100,000 confirmed orders for the EDV from Amazon.
As Rivian is still in a growth phase, the company expects to continue losing money in the years ahead. For the third quarter of 2021, it reported an operational loss of $776 million and a net loss of $1.23 billion. It also warned of some supply chain issues and issues related to ramping up production that will mean it falls short of its 2021 production target of 1,200 vehicles by “a few hundred vehicles.”