Anyone worried?

RforRivian

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Also could you see Rivian changing their current battery pack to a newer one before official sales begin?
No. They've put to much time, testing, and investment into their current pack. Changing it now would be a huge risk. They would be essentially putting an untested, un proven technology into a product that has to come out strong at the start.

I do think that they will have longer ranges than they currently advertise. In an interview earlier this year RJ mentioned the following numbers:

R1T/R1S 105kWh: 240/250
R1T/R1S 135kWh: 315/330
R1T/R1S 180kWh: "Well over 400"

On that last one, if you assume the same rate of increase from the base to mid you come up with about 420 for the R1T and 445 for the R1S. That would be after you subtract a few miles for the added weight of going from an additional 30kWh to 45kWh.

Edit: found the video, related info starts at the 5:30 mark. It's a great interview if you haven't already seen it. Also this was early last year, not earlier this year like I previously mentioned.






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Coast2Coast

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Wow, this thread has gotten folks' attention. I think there are three embedded issues.

First, do we go all in and put all of our eggs (vehicles) in the Rivian basket? This is one I've wrestled with. I've got three vehicles, all of which are getting long in the tooth but they're also reliable, time tested. Do I hold one back as insurance against early reliability problems with the Rivians? My heart says "no" but my head says "yes". I'd like a Cox auto hauler to roll up, drop off my Rivian, and take away all three and, on that, both my head and heart agree.

Second, how long will it take to resolve early problems, so depending on where you are in the preorder queue, you need not worry? This may also be a R1T versus R1S sub-issue because we keep hearing there may be a several months delay in R1S deliveries. Several months is an eternity in this situation. Most assembly line problems, and that's mostly fit and finish issues, are solved quickly, within days if not a week. So if you're a later preorder holder on the R1T or even an early preorder holder on the R1S, a lot of early teething, fit and finish problems will have been resolved.

Third, there's technology obsolescence. Better performance, longer range, more features - later arriving Rivians will inevitably be better spec'ed. The question is, is there anything wrong with earlier versions? I think not. If you need a model that can tow or haul more than what's going to be announced, wait a year. If you're happy with the specs to be announced soon, and they'll be good, if not great, why wait for the 25 megapixel camera when 15 megapixels will do just fine?

If RJ and company are the sort of folks we think they are, I'm cautiously all-in. I do, however, live 35 miles from San Jose, California, one of the larger Rivian facilities, so white glove service is figuratively just around the corner.
 

DucRider

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On any new vehicle, the electronics/computers are the most likely failure point. This is particularly true on EV's because the motor is so simple. We have a cutaway BMW X3 ICE we display next to an electric motor - 1,500+ moving parts vs 2, 238 HP vs 400, 350 lbs vs 105, 5K mile maintenance interval vs 1,000,000, etc. We generally use Cascadia Motion motors (single and dual stack) that were used in the GM eCOPA project, otherwise we have an "exploded" lower performance motor we show.
Rivian is doing significant stress testing, and I believe they will be more cautious about releasing a reliable product than either the traditional OEMs or someone like Tesla (that has significant financial pressure to rush new products out the door). You only get one chance to a make a first impression and Rivian will be very aware of that.
I personally have almost always had more than one vehicle in the garage (at least for the last several decades), and don't see that changing anytime soon.

There is no new battery tech even working in lab conditions, so making it into production in 2021 just ain't gonna happen. Rivian (and many other manufacturers) tweak the chemical composition and other design elements in Li Ion batteries to obtain the characteristics they deem most desirable (usually there is a tradeoff), and Rivian has promoted in their videos that they are doing this. But new tech? Not for many years (from anyone). We will continue to see incremental improvements in the Li Ion "soup", anodes, cathodes, winding schemes, etc, but no solid state, "air" batteries or ?? for quite some time.
 

electruck

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For me, the thing about wanting 400+ miles of range is that I personally am not likely to ever achieve the advertised range when driving 85 mph on the Interstate. The EPA range is determined at lower speeds and on a dyno which doesn't account for drag which increases with the square of velocity. I will likely need 400+ miles EPA range to ensure that in practice the vehicle charge lasts at least as long as my bladder.
 
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ajdelange

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@ajdelange how do you get to the point of knowing battery equivalents and what those translate to ranges and life overall?
The battery management systems in the vehicles are very sophisticated bits of software that collect tons of data about everything going on in the car. The Tesla's have an unsupported API that makes some of this data available to third party application developers several of whom use those to make this data available to users. One, TeslaFi, logs lots of stuff for you such as the Wh/mi (and the car has trip meters that display this too), the change in battery SoC on a trip, the amount of mains kWh used for a charge, the kWh that went into the battery during that charge etc. From these you can deduce the charge and discharge capacities of the battery, the charging efficiency and so on. It takes a while to figure out what all this means but it comes with experience. Now that's for a Tesla vehicle which I own. When it comes to the Rivian I have to extrapolate from Tesla data. Rivian tells me that they will have a 180 kWh battery. ABRP (route planning software) tells me that the Rivian will consume over 500 Wh/mi. My experience with the Tesla X tells me that 400 is more reasonable but that's just an, I hope, educated guess.


Also could you see Rivian changing their current battery pack to a newer one before official sales begin?
It's possible I suppose but doubtful as one doesn't just do this overnight. Rivian has been working on its battery system for years now and while I am sure they have made their BMS (Battery Management System) software flexible there is bound to be some inertia.
 

ajdelange

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There is no new battery tech even working in lab conditions
Silicon? Solid state? Dry coating? Lithium anode? Iron Phosphate?

I don't think you'll see any of those in the early Rivians but I am guessing you'll see a couple in the CT. Stand by for 22 Sept.
 

ajdelange

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For me, the thing about wanting 400+ miles of range is that I personally am not likely to ever achieve the advertised range when driving 85 mph on the Interstate.
No, you won't.

The EPA range is determined at lower speeds and on a dyno which doesn't account for drag which increases with the square of velocity.
It is determined over a programmed set of speeds representative of normal driving in urban, rural and freeway conditions (which does not include 85 mph). But drag is accounted for, as are inertial and gravitational loads, even though a vehicle on a dynamometer doesn't experience any of them.

I will likely need 400+ miles EPA range to ensure that in practice the vehicle charge lasts at least as long as my bladder.
Wait till you get older.
 

IPTV65

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Amazon has a bigger bet than all of us at this point. Nobody bet on Tesla up front. I like their chances but always risk with new Tech. Tesla got a decent product out the door in less time....and with a shockingly small investment compared to Rivian's war chest. Extrapolating...these guys have a great shot at doing a pretty good job given the time and funding they have on their side. The other good thing is they are not first!
 

jjwolf120

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Based on the assumption that they didn't assume advancements in batteries in their initial baterry pack, I would expect the battery packs to have a little more capacity and be a little less expensive than their initial estimates. This should result in somewhat longer ranges (7%-14%) and lower cost. They also probably are going to get better prices on the batteries, due to an increased order amount, since they are guaranteed to need 100,000+ battery packs. This is probably why the price of the vehicles is trending down from their initial estimates.

In technology, their will always be something better just around the corner. There is always the temptation to wait for the next great thing. I have some confidence in the Rivian team produce a good car from the outset, but we will have to wait and see. I'm nowhere near the front of the line, so I should have some idea if things are going horribly wrong before I have to give them my money.

As far as efficiency, I would expect the R1T and the R1S to be less efficient than either the Model S or the Model X due to poorer airodynamics and higher weight.
 

skyote

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I will likely need 400+ miles EPA range to ensure that in practice the vehicle charge lasts at least as long as my bladder.
LOL. I too like to drive fast, but I drink lots of water, so no doubt my bladder will be the limiting factor.

BTW, I'm loving all the intelligent dialogue on this thread...
 

Canthoney

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Amazon has a bigger bet than all of us at this point. Nobody bet on Tesla up front. I like their chances but always risk with new Tech. Tesla got a decent product out the door in less time....and with a shockingly small investment compared to Rivian's war chest. Extrapolating...these guys have a great shot at doing a pretty good job given the time and funding they have on their side. The other good thing is they are not first!

That is a very good point. I don’t think Jeff Bezos is a dumb person by any means, so Amazon‘s continued investments in the company, and their huge order of 100k units, is greatly comforting. Also, I can see them licensing their platform out to more companies than Ford. New platforms are expensive to make and I see even more consolidation in the Auto industry especially with Covid bringing everyone down, so I think Rivian positioned very well.
 

jjwolf120

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I don't think they will be licensing there platform to anyone and won't be producing it for companies other than Ford. They are committed to fulfilling the needs of their shareholders (Ford & Amazon) before producing anything for anyone else.
 

Rob P

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I don't worry too much about the quality . More about some new battery tech hitting 18 months out that is 40 percent more range and cheaper. I think the original owners will be well taken care of in this era of instant internet feedback and may even get more bells and whistles than some of the later models as they will be trying to knock it out of the park initially. Maybe another perk will be free charging at the Rivian stations for the first buyers.
 

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