January is the time of year when manufacturers report on their respective sales figures for the year that just ended. Granted, the effects of the pandemic are still being felt throughout the industry, which has skewed the results somewhat since March 2020, but whether positive or negative, manufacturers – the majority of them at least – are releasing their results for the past 12 months.
We can now add a name to the year 2021 as Rivian, the small American manufacturer supported by Ford and Amazon (to name a few) finally delivered its first vehicles last year. Rivian actually assembled 1,015 vehicles before the stroke of midnight on December 31. The pure electric brand also delivered 920 of its three vehicles currently in production (the R1T van, the R1S utility and the commercial van for Amazon’s empire).
Of course, that statistic is just a drop in the bucket of electric vehicle sales in 2021, but it’s a start for a division that was created from scratch a little over a decade ago. Rivian failed to meet its goal of producing 1,200 vehicles in 2021.
That lower-than-expected production and the departure of COO Rod Copes in December have hurt Rivian’s stock value somewhat. However, the small manufacturer should capitalize on 2022 and the electric drive craze, especially surrounding renewable energy powered pickup trucks.
Rivian was the first to offer an electric pickup on the market, a market that will be populated by a nice lineup of electric trucks, including Ford with its F-150 Lightning, GMC with its Hummer EV, Chevrolet with the Silverado EV, and the instigator of the electric movement, Tesla and its Cybertruck.
The assembly of more commercial vans should in principle help fill the company’s coffers. Clearly, 2022 will be a critical year for Rivian.