Rivian recalls 13,000 vehicles to fix minor structural defect

ELECTRIC vehicle maker Rivian Automotive will recall about 13,000 vehicles it delivered to customers after discovering a minor structural defect. 

Irvine, California-based Rivian will recall the vehicles because a fastener "may not have been sufficiently torqued," chief executive officer RJ Scaringe said in a letter to customers that was seen by Bloomberg News. 

The company is recalling about 13,000 vehicles, even though the issue was discovered only in seven, "out of an abundance of caution." 

The cost of the recall is not material, according to a person familiar with the matter. 

The recall is a setback to Rivian, which has only recently overcome production problems and parts shortages to deliver its EVs to customers in meaningful volumes. The company also had to deal with the fallout of an embarrassing U-turn in March to raise prices on preorders.

Rivian builds the battery-electric R1T pickup and R1S sport utility vehicle for consumers. It also has a deal with Amazon.com Inc., one of its biggest shareholders, to build 100,000 EV delivery vans by the end of this decade.

"The safety of our customers will always be our top priority, and we are committed to fixing this issue on any affected vehicles as quickly as possible," a Rivian spokesperson said in a statement. 

"We will make any necessary adjustments free of charge at one of our service centres."

Rivian was seen as the hottest new EV startup to challenge incumbent Tesla, after a monster initial public offering in November and big-name Wall Street backers and strategic investors like Ford Motor. 

However, production challenges have sent the shares down 67 per cent this year, though its reaffirmation of a goal of building 25,000 EVs this year helped trim losses. BLOOMBERG



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