First off, let me just state that this post is pure speculation. There are no "facts" here, only guesses as to what may happen as Rivian launches their production vehicles to the consumers. I just wanted to put this out here to see if I could possibly guess what the next steps might look like. Then, I can compare my guesses with what actually happens and see how close (or far!) I am to reality.
- Rivian intends to begin at least some deliveries in September, 2021 (still)
- Rivian has their first "First Drives" set for September 26-30th in Normal, IL
- Low-end pre-orders numbers are ~1000 R1T and 400 R1S
- High-end pre-orders numbers are 10,000 R1T and 3000 R1S
I have to guess at the pre-order numbers. That is the hardest part to work out. I am basing my ratios of R1T to R1S on the people that filled out the worksheet at https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1WI2iZS6ligy8k4myXbnSPQuQMsYeh9cz5bcWcWgF7Eo/edit and the fact that the forum sites have roughly 3000 users each, registered. I find it extrememly difficult to think that very many people put down a deposit on a Rivian and are NOT actively looking at the forums. There could be some, but I doubt it is many.
Do I think that more orders have been made in recent weeks due to the press coverage? Yup, I sure do. How many is anyone's guess. But the articles on MotorTrend have certainly provided some legitimacy to the brand Rivian and the R1T trucks.
So here is what I think will unfold over the next few months. This is again, all pure speculation. I have no inside information. Everything here is just a wild guess (hope!) for how it might play out. (FULL DISCLOSURE: I am a June, 2021 pre-order holder for an R1S).
- Rivian will deliver some 600 or so R1T Launch Edition units to pre-order customers by mid-November. This could be higher. I used about 7 weeks for production schedule from now (September) until mid-November. At a conservative 5 days per week production, 7 hour shifts on two lines building 1 vehicle every 10 minutes (they said they can do 1 every 4 minutes at full ramp, which is not likely to be this soon), that allows for about 2900 vehicles produced by mid-November. This number excludes the max-pack holders, which has been said will not be available at the start.
- Rivian will deliver about 200 R1S Launch Edition units to pre-order customers by mid-December. This is a big wild card. It depends on how difficult it is to run a line for R1S. If they can output all their R1T pre-orders by running two lines of R1T at the same time, one line could swtich over to R1S by early November.
- The first 10 pre-order holders that got to visit the Normal, IL manufactoring plant will get their vehicles delivered before the end of September, 2021! These people already got to drive the vehicles and test them out. They should have no objections to completing their purchases, unless they hated it. So I suspect they have all been contacted, completing financing for the R1Ts and will get their vehicles this month. This will open up new flood gates of press and stories for the R1s and keep the momentum up for Rivian as they approach an IPO date.
- Every pre-order holder that attends the First Drive event in Normal will be taken in to work out financing and complete their orders. If the model is already manufactured on-site, they could take it home that day or the next. All of those vehicles will be delivered in early October. This is a must to happen for momentum to continue propelling Rivian forward.
- Additional press will come out the week of September 27th, 2021, as the press embargo is lifted. This will include the media event that happened outside of Breckenridge, CO in mid-September, 2021. The whole point of what will happen next week is to start the conversion process of pre-order into sales.
- I think that Rivian will want to do press weekly leading up to an IPO date. They want to show that they have delivered as many of their Launch Edition pre-orders as they could, excluding the max-packs. They want to show those people are happy and love their R1Ts and R1Ss. Then they will start getting into the non-LE pre-orders and start fullfilling them. This is what will create the additional buzz to land NEW orders that they will need.
- Actual revenue up to mid-November will be in the neighborhood of $48M. That is 600 R1T sold at an average price of $80K each. That would look very GOOD for an IPO, with additional revenue of the R1T and R1S remaining pre-orders of around $64M (800 more vehicles).
- The potential revenue should start jumping at this point as more and more people hear about Rivian (none of my friends know much, unless I cornered them) and the press reports on what the quality is like for the vehicles. This will do well for the stock price after the IPO is complete and for heading into 2022.
- In Q1 or Q2 of 2022, Rivian will announce some additional models they will sell. At this point, they could have (should have) caught up to all demand for the R1T and R1S and will be looking to expand their product offerings. I think this will be something like a dual-motor R1T and R1S that comes in at a slightly lower starting price. Maybe it has a metal roof instead of glass or some other features are changed around to lower the price-point (deleted heated/cooled seats). This will share the same platform with similar builds, smaller/larger battery packs, etc.
- I will have the option of receiving an R1S that was ordered in June of 2021, around April, 2022. I suspect it could be much earlier than that date, but it could also be much later. It all depends on the one value that none of us know and that is the number of pre-orders that exist and how many will convert to sales.
- I will LOVE driving an EV R1S and it will place a smile on my face every time I get into it. :-)
Whew. That is a LOT of speculation. There are so many variables at play with something like this, who knows what will actually end up happening. The supply chain madness could get worse. COVID could go into the Fall stretch with more outbreaks and causing numerous delays of all sorts. Who knows. But this is what my guesses are as of September 23, 2021. I only base this on observations made in the forums and online sites.
Now we keep our fingers crossed and hope for the best! I certainly do wish Rivian well and look forward to seeing the vehicles on the roads. Hopefully soon. :)