The Composition of Rivian’s R1T Customer Base:

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BareBonesRivian

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I don't believe these details are "missing", perhaps just not the answers you are hoping to hear. There are currently no plans to offer a "bare bones" R1T with steel coil or leaf spring suspension, solid rear axle, traditional shocks/struts, anti-roll bars, cloth interior, hand crank windows, no radio, manual heater/fan controil, no A/C, no gps, no Alexa integration, no autonomous driving, etc.

Rivian has quite clearly communicated that with the R1 models they are positioning themselves as a premium, aspirational brand more along the lines of Range Rover. They will not be offering a long bed version of the R1T at launch or anytime soon thereafter - 55" will be the only option. The large touch screen on the dash is key to controlling most of the vehicles features and will never be optional - this is a fully digital vehicle. Without the display you lose: media, hvac, nav, and control for most everything else in the vehicle.

Unlike Ford that offers variants from $28k to well over $70k, you won't find a "bare bones" version of a Rivian. The current economics of battery packs of this size really forces them into the premium market as do other choices such as their selection of a very high end suspension and "vegan leather" interior. Also don't forget the costs of building out and sustaining all of the digital infrastructure not only in the vehicles but also in the AWS data centers that will be required to process the extensive telemetry generated by a growing fleet of vehicles to support both vehicle health and service as well as advanced features such as AD.

While there will certainly be growing demand for "bare bones" electric work trucks, the profit margin on this doesn't lend itself well to a startup auto manufacturer. Couple that with a very high level of BEV skepticism from the hard core work truck demographic and trying to launch into that market would be nearly impossible (Lordstown is wisely pursuing large commercial fleets at launch to get that initial toe hold on the work truck market but even their truck starts at a lofty $52.5k). Support for the product you seek will come from others, if not eventually Rivian, as BEV acceptance increases within the work/farm truck demographic and economies of scale and technology improvements eventually drive down the costs.

I will also toss out that, over time, you may be forced to reconsider your definition of "bare bones" and the physical robustness of things like touch screen displays as the tech becomes ever more pervasive and even farm tractors have entered the digital age.
Touch screens have their place, as does a lot of the electronics that can be effectively used in a work environment. However, if Rivian insists on treading down the road of deluxe features, whose only value is to a narrow segment of the population with such interest, they will miss a much larger market. CIH is an enormous company, and has been around for well over 100 years, rebranding itself as it grew acquiring related assets along the way.



It should be remembered that Ford initially manufactured tractors. It will be those companies that produce products with lower prices that actually grow in popularity and can offer higher end products as a result of that growth. That is a plus for those who buy the products of companies such as this, since they will be around for the long haul, as will be parts that need replacement.



Your example, by the way, is narrowly defined by “instrumentation” (for want of a better word). CIH produced an ICE tractor that achieved a world record by plowing of 1-1/4 square miles in a 24 hr period. I’m sure that in the future that will be a record broken by farm tractors that run solely on electric motors. That may mean that some form of battery replacement takes place in mere minutes. When that happens EVERY farmer will want one. The company, just like the original Ford start-up company, will be making more than just electrically driven agricultural equipment. And why would farmers want one? The main reason would be much lower cost, particularly when it comes to maintenance, whether it’s agricultural or automotive.
 

Shzeph

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I think the long and short of it is that Rivian has, since the beginning, presented themselves as the producer of high-tech luxury(ish) vehicles. They never said they were going after fleet sales or the blue collar sector.

Sure, you do exclude certain market segments by going upscale and high-tech, but it’s not a new strategy. Rivian has chosen their initial market, and it happens to be wealth(ier) people who in general tend to like all the bells and whistles.

Down the road they may branch out, but for now and for the foreseeable future, I am quite certain we won’t see the sort of bare bones truck you’re describing.
 
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