amazon rivian tesla
Amazon unveiled a new climate change action plan today. It’s terrible news for Tesla, and a huge boon to one of its biggest rivals. | Source: AP Photo / Pablo Martinez Monsivais

Seven months after electric truck start-up Rivian announced that it had raised $700 million in an investment round led by Amazon, the online retail giant has placed a massive order with the Michigan-based EV firm as part of its new climate change strategy.

Tesla rival scores massive Amazon order

According to a statement released by the tech behemoth, Amazon will order 100,000 electric delivery trucks from Rivian as part of its efforts to cut carbon emissions. Amazon intends to meet the requirements of the Paris Agreement by 2040, ten years ahead of schedule. By 2024, Amazon hopes to be using 80% renewable energy.

Rivian will deliver the trucks within a span of three years, starting in 2021.

Amazon, tesla, rivian
Rivian will deliver the vans within a span of three years

How do Rivian vehicles compare with Tesla’s?

The massive order comes a little over half a year since Amazon led a $700 million investment round in Rivian. At the time, CNBC revealed that Rivian’s R1T pickup trucks would feature a 180 kWh battery pack. This would be enough to offer a range of 400 miles. The truck is also expected to tow cargo of up to 11,000 pounds.

Though not in the same category, the highest-range Tesla vehicle, a Model S, comes with a 100 kWh battery pack. Tesla claims this car has a range of 370 miles.

With regards to speed, the Rivian R1T is expected to reach 60 miles per hour in 3 seconds. The Tesla Model S can accelerate from zero to 60 miles per hour within 2.4 seconds.

Details about Rivian’s delivery truck have not been announced.

Jeff Bezos & Elon Musk bring space rivalry home to Earth

While making the announcement, Amazon noted that this was the “largest order ever of electric delivery vehicles.” It is also slightly more than the number of cars that Tesla has ever delivered in a single quarter. During the second quarter of this year, Tesla delivered a total of 95,200 cars, its best quarter ever.

The Amazon order now promises to give Rivian a significant advantage because it will already have a customer who could easily offer repeat business.

While Tesla has a head start, Rivian could potentially provide it with serious competition in the future. Tesla also has plans to release a delivery truck known as the Semi, but in terms of sales, Rivian is already far ahead.

Amazon’s deepening alliance with Rivian promises to open a new front in the competition between Jeff Bezos and Tesla CEO Elon Musk.

The two are already fierce rivals in space travel, with Bezos leading Blue Origin and Musk heading SpaceX.

Now, they’re bringing their rivalry home to Earth.


This article was edited by Josiah Wilmoth.

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