Elon Musk Tells Rivian to Put First Factory to Work Before Building Second One

Elon Musk must feel like an older brother to new EV companies. At least, that is how he behaved regarding Rivian’s plans to establish a second plant in the U.S. In a tweet (obviously), he said the competitor should be concerned about getting the Normal factory to work before worrying about another plant.
Elon Musk Gives Rivian a Piece of Advice 6 photos
Photo: Rivian/Tesla
Elon MuskElon MuskElon MuskElon MuskElon Musk Gives Rivian a Piece of Advice
Musk’s concern seems to be primarily with reaching volume production at an affordable unit cost. In his tweet, the Tesla CEO said it was “insanely difficult” for his company to do that. We just wonder if Rivian is not perfectly aware of that already, especially with Ford as one of its leading investors besides Amazon and Cox Automotive. Ford knows a thing or two about mass production.

Bloomberg recently revealed that Fort Worth is the strongest competitor for the $5 billion investment Rivian is willing to make. The Texan city would have infrastructure advantages that locations in Arizona would not be able to offer. Reuters’ first report about the investments revealed that Rivian was very inclined to choose that other state as its new home, just like Lucid did.

With a lot of money for these investments already in its pockets and yet to go public – which will give it a lot more – Rivian is not willing to wait. Apart from its new American factory, it is also studying a new plant in Europe. The UK seems to be the strongest contender to receive it so far, but Germany and the Netherlands also want that facility.

Since Musk feels he can give some advice to Rivian, we wonder if RJ Scaringe will feel authorized to do the same. If that were the case, he would probably recommend that Tesla didn’t base all its new products around a new cell format that is yet to be validated for mass production.

While the 4680 cell is not ready, Giga Austin and Giga Grünheide will not be able to make cars. The Cybertruck, Semi, Roadster, and Model Y for these plants will have a structural battery pack that needs these batteries to be manufactured.

Another recommendation we could see Scaringe making would be that Tesla reinstated its PR department. Rivian has a pretty professional one which helps the company keep the public informed in a transparent way. Finally, he would probably tell Musk not to create a car without a steering wheel before it could actually drive itself, as the Tesla CEO allegedly wanted the Model Y to be.

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About the author: Gustavo Henrique Ruffo
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Motoring writer since 1998, Gustavo wants to write relevant stories about cars and their shift to a sustainable future.
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