Buying an electric vehicle in 2022 is still pretty expensive. Fully-electric pickup trucks are still mostly new and, as a result, very expensive. Unfortunately, Rivian, one of the most popular new EV automakers, is making its vehicles cost even more. By eliminating the cheapest Explore Package from the lineups of its R1T truck and R1S SUV, they’ve become more challenging to purchase. Why is the Explore Package dropped, and what does that mean for the Rivian models?
Rivian eliminates the cheapest Explore Package
According to Cars.com, Rivian just dropped the base Explore Package for both of its vehicles. This includes the R1T pickup truck and the R1S SUV. Both of which include those preordered by customers already. Moreover, this means if you reserved an R1T or R1S with the Explore Package, you won’t be getting it. Instead, only the top-of-the-line Adventure Package is available, which is much more costly.
Furthermore, Cars.com says the base package is absent because of supply chain constraints. Rivian has struggled all year to fill orders and meet production goals. As a result, prices have changed, orders have been delayed, and now, the base version of its new electric vehicles is gone.
Why did Rivian drop the Explore Package?
The automaker cites low demand for the Explore’s elimination. The Adventure Package was the more popular choice among most of its customers. In addition, it says that offering a single package for each vehicle will help get more cars into owners’ hands more quickly. Supply chain roadblocks are something nearly every automaker is navigating, and they have been for a few years. As a result, they’re forced to make decisions like this that upset some customers but will ultimately allow them to produce more vehicles.
“When we initially launched our vehicles, we planned to offer two packages, Adventure and Explore, to offer more variety to our customers. The Explore Package was designed as our entry price option and it was our expectation that many customers would choose it. However, to date, only a small percentage of our customers have chosen this configuration with the vast majority selecting Adventure. By focusing on the Adventure trim package, we’re able to streamline our supply chain and ultimately deliver vehicles more quickly,”Rivian
How much are the Rivian R1T and R1S now?
Previously, the 2022 Rivian R1T Explore started at $67,500, and the R1S Explore was $70,000. Stepping up to the Adventure Package for either vehicle would cost $73,000 and $78,000, respectively. Now, the Explore Packages aren’t available for either vehicle, meaning the Adventure model is the range-topper and the base model. As a result, buying a Rivian electric truck or SUV is much more expensive now.
Furthermore, most of the difference between the two packages comes from the interior technology and design. For example, the Explore model has matte-black finishes and heated vegan-leather seats. Contrarily, the Adventure turns it into heated and cooled vegan-leather seats, a natural-grained ash wood trim, and a premium Meridian sound system.
What does this mean for Rivian R1T and R1S Explore Package reservation holders?
According to Cars.com, reservation holders for these dropped models have a choice to make. They can upgrade their Explore Package to an Adventure Package or cancel their pre-order. Moreover, all deposits are fully-refundable until September 16, so be sure to cancel yours quickly if you wish to do so. On the other hand, customers placing a new order are required to pay a $1,000 deposit, and deliveries begin in late 2023.
In conclusion, the electric vehicle automaker Rivian just made its vehicles more expensive. The R1T EV pickup and R1S EV SUV now start a few thousand dollars higher. Customers interested in buying one need to get the Adventure Package instead of the newly eliminated Explore Package. Without the lower-tier base version, Rivian is sacrificing its small amount of affordability for the capability to produce vehicles more quickly. Unfortunately, automakers require these changes in 2022 to fight back against supply chain issues.