Rivian - PLEASE DO THIS

Discussion in 'Rivian General Discussions' started by Feathermerchant, Jan 12, 2020.

  1. Feathermerchant

    Feathermerchant Active Member

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    Y'all are making a premium adventure product. One that is intended to take your customers wherever they want to go in comfort and no hassle. So please do the premium thing and become a part of the Tesla charging network. It is designed to service vehicles with far less range than yours. I'll bet you'll double or triple the number of reservations.
     
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  2. ajdelange

    ajdelange Well-Known Member

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    If Rivian does not join the Tesla network (which I do not believe it will do) it is staking its future success on the success of EA. It doesn't take one very long to conclude that 50kW isn't enough for charging vehicles with 180 kWh batteries (plan a few trips with ABRP) and the only people out there with higher powered chargers, with few exceptions, are EA. This is easily verified by spending a few minutes with PlugShare. Deselect EA and look for other chargers > 50 kW. Petro Canada has the TCH covered pretty well but in the States only LA has anything to speak of. The station listed for Albany, NY is actually an EA station.

    The way things look right now I would not be sleeping very well at night if the survival of my company depended on EA. Rivian is doubtless as concerned and probably watches EA closely. Perhaps their better insight has convinced them that their (EA's) assurances of dramatic improvement will come to fruition. The alternative is for them to go with Tesla or to build out something on their own. There isn't time for that. They will, presumably, be delivering trucks about a year from now.
     
  3. Hmp10

    Hmp10 Well-Known Member

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    I don't think Tesla is interested in opening its network to other manufacturers. Early on, Musk offered to make his Superchargers an open system, but other manufacturers -- perhaps betting that Musk wouldn't or couldn't really fund a proprietary system for his upstart company -- refused to get on board.

    With the Model 3 selling very well and the Model Y projected to do even better, I think the concern is that Tesla superchargers will have all the traffic they can handle just for Teslas. I hear that lines regularly form in areas such as Los Angeles. I have experienced that twice in greater Miami in the past year. Even in southwestern Florida, where EV penetration is lower, the nearest supercharger, where I never used to see a car besides mine, is now invariably occupied by at least a couple of other Teslas when I drive up. And the destination chargers are often fully occupied.

    As a Tesla owner, I would get rather irritated to have to wait for a charging port while non-Teslas were topping off. When it comes to charging, Musk has, perhaps inadvertently, stolen a march on other manufacturers. Tesla owners have access to the best current charging network and can also access other charging networks. Other EV owners are more limited in their charging options . . . and Musk probably wants to keep it that way at this point.
     
  4. ajdelange

    ajdelange Well-Known Member

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    Should we stake our future on Tesla or EA? I think the answer to that is so obvious that I have to conclude that E. M. has either rescinded his offer or made the terms so onerous that even EA looks good. OTOH NIH is a very, very powerful force. I've seen it do amazing things.

    I do very much wonder what the reaction to a Rivian juicing up at a Tesla Super charger would be. It's not hard to predict how the Tesla owners would feel if they pulled up to the tail of a lengthy queue with 3/4 of the stalls occupied by Rivians but what about the more normal situation in which there would be no queue with a Rivian or two among a larger umber of Teslas? Knowing human nature to the extent I believe I do after 75 years I am sure there would be a sore head or two but I'm guessing that the early reactions would mostly be curiousity and eventually acceptance.
     
  5. Lmirafuente

    Lmirafuente Well-Known Member

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    I understand also agree with the concerns of charging stations for the Rivian’s. In talking to RJ when I met him at Overland West last year,he asked us how many gas station are there is the USA (168,000) and he asked us how long do you think it takes to approve building a gas station. He asked us the same thing about the time it takes to get a charging station installed. You are talking about a 3yr versus one month respectively.

    If you look at Chevron putting charging stations at all their gas stations https://electrek.co/2019/05/20/chevron-ev-charging-gas-stations/ I am not as concerned about access to charging stations...I do share the concern about the quantity of 50kW and 100kW chargers.

    In the same conversation with RJ they will be focused on Rivian charging stations at remote “adventure” venues.

    Hopefully the general question of how Rivian will support it’s customers will be revealed soon. I bundle “support” to include charging stations.

    I also think that as Ford, GM, Jaguar, Sony (wink), VW, etc come out with their EV’s the demand and pressure to have 100kW stations will grow rapidly to help mitigate charging lines...as an example, here in California when the mandatory power shut off took place last year the lines at the Tesla charging stations was not a pretty site. Since Rivian is using a standard plug, we will have access to many other charging stations.

    For now, I do share your concerns, and I am very optimistic as the transformation from ICE to EV is inevitable ....
     
  6. Hmp10

    Hmp10 Well-Known Member

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    I don't think future charging will be limited to Tesla or EA. Several oil companies are already looking at installing charging stations at their existing gas stations, and I'm sure the free market will evolve more responses to growing charging demands. I suspect that ten years from now, current worries about roadside charging will be largely moot. Just look at how far we've come since 2012 when Tesla launched the Model S.

    However, for a car company during its launch phase, it is the current state of the charging network that poses the most challenge, and it is a tool that one manufacturer will use to get a leg up over another whenever possible.

    Despite his claims to the contrary, I don't think Must was being altruistic with his early offer to make superchargers an open network. He was looking for help in funding a faster and broader buildout to make Tesla vehicles more appealing. Other manufacturers declined, hoping to stalemate him while they figured out whether or how to enter the EV game themselves. As it turned out, Musk weathered years of doubts about the financial viability of his new company, figured out a way to fund a proprietary network on his own, and emerged an early victor in the EV wars.

    With the Cybertruck putting Tesla into direct competition with Rivian within a couple of years, I just don't see any reason Musk would open the Tesla charging network to Rivian at this point.
     
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  7. ajdelange

    ajdelange Well-Known Member

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    These arguments might have borne weight 10 years ago when there was no charging network of any kind and the first users charged at home, hotels etc. The situation is very different today. Rivian isn't facing an empty playing field. It it facing an entrenched competitor with a charging network that should be the envy of any car maker. When a prospective buyer looks at the choice of Rivian or CT there are only two things that stack up in Rivian's favor. The extreme ugliness of the CT and the fact that you can be in the Rivian sooner. The fact that several oil companies are looking at installing chargers isn't going to be much comfort to a prospective buyer (unless he lives in Canada where one oil company has installed chargers along the country's major east-west artery).

    When I look at the trips I make frequently comparing what they are like with the Tesla network against what they will be like with the CCS network makes it plain that Rivien is at a substantial disadvantage with regard to this very important aspect of BEV ownership. Now that the CT is a reality (if a future one) they will lose sales to it. Of course it has been pointed out that this may, initially, be exactly what they want as they will be ramping up production for a couple of years. By the time their production is substantial perhaps all EA's woes will have been fixed and their network strong. I hope so. The implications of the failure of EA go well beyond just Rivian.

    We live in interesting times. But then I've heard that "May you live in interesting times" is a Middle Eastern curse.
     
  8. Hmp10

    Hmp10 Well-Known Member

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    If these arguments don't still bear weight, I wonder why there are so many posts on this board and elsewhere by people worrying about how they will charge their EV's on the road.

    I do agree the situation is much improved over what it was in 2012, as I posted earlier, but I don't think the jockeying between automakers for charging advantages relative to competitors is anywhere near over. I also agree that a failure of EA to meet promises will have wide-ranging consequences, as Lucid Motors, Volkswagen, and probably others are banking on it, quite literally.
     
  9. skyote

    skyote Well-Known Member

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    If there was any company that Musk might allow to use the Tesla charging network, I think it's Rivian.

    Vehicle volume should be manageable & I think Musk will be more worried about the traditional automakers.

    I don't think it will happen though, and I believe CCS infrastructure will exceed the Tesla network within the next few years.
     
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  10. electruck

    electruck Well-Known Member

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    Here's an interesting thought. IIRC, Musk was at one point open to sharing the Supercharger network if other companies were willing to contribute to its build out. Scaringe has indicated that Rivian will be building out charging infrastructure near adventure destinations - places the Supercharger network may not have extended to yet but would be future destinations for CT. If they could work out an agreement, Rivian would have access to existing Superchargers along the main roads and Tesla would gain destination coverage.

    I would be shocked to actually see this happen but wouldn't it be absolutely fantastic if it did?!
     
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  11. aAlpine

    aAlpine Well-Known Member

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    Despite what Elon has Tweeted in the past (where's my FSD?), I also don't see Tesla opening up the Supercharger anytime soon, or at least not without an unreasonable ask.

    If I'm being more hopeful, the only way I see it happening is that 1) Rivian starts contributing significant capital into adding chargers, and/or 2) Rivian owners having to pay quite a bit for charging, like EA rates. The second point still gives Tesla vehicles a selling point, and maybe also providing Tesla with a new source of revenue. To control and make the added load to the network worth it though, I really bet it wouldn't be cheap to charge. Honestly, I'd still be happy with that the 1% of the time it's needed.

    But then there's also the question of charging ports standards...ugh.
     
  12. electruck

    electruck Well-Known Member

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    I would certainly be willing to pay more than Tesla customers for access to the supercharger network. I would hope for rates less than EA but even at comparable rates it would definitely be worth it for the increased availability of fast chargers. I would only be using fast charging for the occasional highway trip so cost is less of an issue than charger availability. Most of the time I would be charging at home and paying residential rates.
     
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  13. Hmp10

    Hmp10 Well-Known Member

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    Musk really seems to have a go-it-alone bias that has become stronger as Tesla's success has become more assured. He's almost like Henry Ford in his instinct for vertical integration, ranging from batteries to things as non-strategic as car seats, something that he almost alone has brought in-house. I'm no judge whether it's a good approach or not, but I suspect he's got very little interest in bringing another manufacturer on board with his charging infrastructure at this point.
     
  14. Feathermerchant

    Feathermerchant Active Member

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    As far as I know, Tesla's offer to open it's charging system to others is still open. I have not read anything to the contrary.
    Here is why I think companies have not taken Tesla up on the offer. Tesla has always said that it will not make the Supercharging network a profit center. Remember that Tesla's mission is to accelerate the world's transition to sustainable energy. https://www.tesla.com/about
    That being said when another company comes on board, they can expect to make little or no profit by participating in the Supercharging network. Wall Street investors want/demand profit. I can see why boards of other car companies (esp startups that are naturally short on cash) want to put the charge infrastructure build out on other companies. Especially if they are planning to build cars that are mostly used around town where they can be charged at home.
    Rivian purports to be building vehicles to 'get away' and so could really use the Supercharging network as well as build Superchargers in more or less remote areas as was mentioned by another above. The Rivian products are, so far, very different from the Tesla products and so do not offer any meaningful competition. I do think that Rivian would see a real increase in reservations if they announced they were joining with Tesla in the Supercharging network.

    On another subject, I am very encouraged to find that Wawa and Sheetz are adding Supercharger stations at their stores:
    https://www.teslarati.com/tesla-superchargers-to-double-in-wawa-stores-2020/

    https://csnews.com/sheetz-powers-its-electric-vehicle-charging-initiative

    On a recent trip from Tx to Pa, and back, we used one of each and they were very convenient.
     
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  15. Hmp10

    Hmp10 Well-Known Member

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    Chevron and ExxonMobil are also getting on board with installing charging stations. I think we're going to reach a tipping point when charging stations start to become common at gas stations.

    Most gas stations make considerably more profit off sales of food and convenience items than sales of gas. An ideal customer for them would be someone having to spend more time at a charger than at a gas pump. Also, gas stations are generally located on prime real estate in terms of major roadway access, and many EV owners might opt to pay a higher fee for charging right off an interstate exit rather than having to wander onto unfamiliar city streets or into huge mall complexes where current chargers are often located, thereby giving gas station locales a margin edge over other charging venues.

    I could be wrong, but I have a feeling that WaWa and Sheetz are subsidizing the installation of Tesla superchargers, either by making the land available for free or in other ways. An EV driver is an ideal customer for such businesses.
     
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