Rivian Teases Five Mystery EVs, Including ‘Affordable’ Mainstream Models

Does this mean Rivian's sports car project could be revived?
Rivian future models
Rivian

Rivian’s future is brimming with possibility now that Volkswagen’s ready to invest $5 billion as part of their newly announced software partnership. Some of that possibility is a broader lineup, as Rivian apparently is planning five more EVs, painting a tantalizing picture of the coming decade for Rivian.

The vehicles were teased in a slide of an investor presentation (h/t The Verge) that suggests them to be additions to Rivian’s existing and announced future lineup. Organized into columns, the vehicles fall into four categories: first-generation EVs, second-gen models, “MSP,” and “affordable mass-market.” Rivian considers its pre-facelift R1 duo and delivery van its first-gen models, while the updated R1T and R1S fall into the second-gen category. A silhouette completes the column, and while we get no clues as to what it could be, the carryover from first-gen models suggests this could be an improved delivery van. And no, not those weird-looking vans it makes with Morgan Olson.

Rivian's current lineup
Rivian’s current lineup. Rivian

Things get considerably more exciting starting with the MSP category, whose acronym isn’t defined, but presumably stands for “modular shared platform.” It will underpin the upcoming R2 and R3 crossovers, as well as a third model that we’re again left to guess about. Its veiled silhouette is shared with a vehicle in another column, so that gives us no clues as to body style. The most exciting (if unlikely) possibility is that Rivian revives its sports car project, which was put on ice many years ago. It certainly fits better here than in the mass-market column, which is where most of Rivian’s unannounced models fall.

Again, there’s only so much the outlines can tell us. Two of the cheap models look like SUVs, while the third appears smaller in stature. Perhaps this will be a smaller car rather than a crossover, though there’s no telling yet. Despite the VW partnership, it doesn’t seem like these EVs will use a licensed VW platform—the brands’ EV businesses will apparently remain separate. That presumably goes both ways, which would mean VW’s rebooted Scout brand wouldn’t use a reworked R1 platform. That’d fit with Scout’s simpler, rawer ethos, as opposed to Rivian’s emphasis on technology.

In any case, there’s lots to be excited about in Rivian’s future—even if we don’t find out what’s coming for another couple of years.

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