Rivian seeks to cut costs while boosting EV production to meet 2022 targets

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Rivian electric pickup trucks sit in a parking lot at a Rivian service center on May 09, 2022 in South San Francisco, California. 
Justin Sullivan | Getty Images

Electric vehicle maker Rivian Automotive on Wednesday reaffirmed its 25,000-vehicle production target for 2022, but said it plans to spend less to do it as the company reported third-quarter revenue that fell short of Wall Street’s expectations.

Rivian cut its guidance for 2022 capital expenditures: It now expects its full-year capital expenditures to total about $1.75 billion, down from the $2 billion it guided to after the second quarter, as it shifts some planned spending to next year.

The company still expects its full-year adjusted loss before income, taxes, depreciation and amortization to come in at $5.4 billion, in line with the guidance it gave in August.

Shares of the company rose 7% in after-hours trading.

Here are the key numbers from Rivian’s third-quarter earnings report, compared with average Wall Street analyst expectations as complied by Refinitiv:

  • Revenue: $536 million, versus $551.6 million expected.
  • Adjusted loss per share: $1.57, versus an expected loss of $1.82 per share.

Rivian’s net loss for the third quarter was about $1.72 billion, a wider loss than the $1.23 billion it reported a year earlier.

As of September 30, the company had about $13.8 billion in cash remaining, down from $15.5 billion as of June 30. Rivian said while inflation has been a factor in its supply chain, it’s taking steps to reduce costs and slow spending on future product. It reiterated that it’s “confident” its cash hoard will last through 2025.

As part of its moves to slow spending, the company now expects to launch its upcoming smaller product platform, called R2, in 2026 rather than in 2025 as it had previously said. The R2 will be built in a new factory in Georgia.

Rivian said it now has “over 114,000” preorders for its R1-series trucks and SUVs, up from about 98,000 preorders as of Aug. 11. Those totals don’t include the 100,000 electric delivery vans ordered by Amazon in 2020.

Rivian said it’s added a second shift of workers at its Illinois factory, a key step toward boosting production volumes. It noted that the new workers are still coming online — but said that the second shift is already producing vehicles.

Rivian said on Oct. 3 that it produced 7,363 vehicles in the third quarter and delivered 6,584 vehicles to customers during the period. Year to date, through the third quarter, Rivian produced 14,317 vehicles.

The automaker also said Wednesday that with production volumes increasing, it has moved to shipping its vehicles by rail, rather than by truck. That change has reduced costs, but it also means that new vehicles may take more time to get to customers after being produced. Because of that lag, Rivian said, the gap between its quarterly production and delivery totals may increase going forward.

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