Rivian’s Smaller, More Affordable Platform Just Got Pushed Back

Rivian is an electric vehicle automaker that could potentially challenge Tesla in the future. The brand has shown what its trucks, SUVs, and electric powertrain systems are capable of with the R1T and R1S. Rivian has a bright and exciting future if it can continue to grow its sales and production numbers at a healthy rate. The company’s smaller, more affordable electric vehicle platform just got pushed even further out.

Don’t expect an affordable Rivian anytime soon

Front angle view of orange-red 2023 Rivian R1T electric pickup truck
2023 Rivian R1T | Rivian

RELATED: Say Goodbye to the Cheapest Rivian R1T Model

If you were hoping for an affordable Rivian option anytime soon, you’re fresh out of luck. Rivian made a huge splash on the market with the introduction of the first-ever fully electric American pickup truck: the Rivian R1T.

The Rivian R1T Launch Edition is a modern automotive marvel that produces a whopping 835 horsepower and 908 lb-ft of torque. It’s a performance pickup with off-roading capabilities that are practically unparalleled. There’s no question that Rivian produces impressive vehicles, but those vehicles aren’t attainable for the average American driver. The R1T Launch Edition starts at $85,000.

Rivian recently axed its base Explore trim for the Rivian R1T and R1S. Now, both models start with the Adventure trim ($73,000 for the R1T, $78,000 for the R1S). The automaker announced an R2 platform which will be smaller and more affordable than R1 vehicles. According to InsideEVs, Rivian has officially pushed back the R2 platform’s release date to 2026, so it’ll be quite some time until more affordable Rivians roll off of the assembly lot.

The electric vehicle automaker would benefit greatly from the introduction of more affordable options. A smaller SUV option could become the brand’s most popular model yet. Looks like the world will have to wait years before finally receiving a more mainstream Rivian option.

Electric vehicles are slowly becoming more affordable

A gray 2023 Chevrolet Bolt EUV electric subcompact SUV is parked.
The 2023 Chevy Bolt EUV | Chevrolet

RELATED: 2023 Chevy Bolt EV: 5 Features That Make This Sub-$30,000 Hatchback a Steal

Pricing is a huge reason why some consumers avoid purchasing EVs. Electric vehicles are often much more expensive than gas-powered vehicles because of their complex powertrain systems. Automakers are beginning to produce historically affordable EVs.

GM’s Chevy Bolt EV is currently the most affordable electric vehicle on the market. The 2023 Chevy Bolt EV starts at just $25,600. The Bolt EUV electric subcompact SUV starts at just $27,200. Competitors will soon arise to challenge the Bolt EV electric hatchback and Bolt EUV electric subcompact SUV within the same price range.

Tesla is also working on producing an affordable hatchback. Autoweek.com claims that the Tesla hatchback is expected to have a starting price of around $25K. This would be a welcome addition to the electric vehicle automaker’s portfolio after major price fluctuations. The current most affordable Tesla is the Model 3 base at $46,990.

An affordable Rivian option could be a game-changer

Red Rivian R1T Fording Through Deep Water
Red Rivian R1T Fording Through Deep Water | Rivian

RELATED: The Rivian Electric Truck Trounces the Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye

When Rivian’s R2 platform does finally arrive in 2026 (or later), it could be a game-changer for the company. A more attainable Rivian model is exactly what the brand needs to compete at a higher level. The question is, just how affordable will the R2 platform be?

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