Rivian beats EV production estimates with shipments rebounding

Rivian Automotive Inc. built and delivered more electric vehicles last quarter than Wall Street expected, giving the automaker a needed boost as it grapples with production hurdles and heavy costs.

The company made 13,980 EVs in the first three months of the year and handed over 13,588 to customers, according to a statement Tuesday. The production figures compared with analysts’ average estimates of 13,817. Deliveries also came in significantly above expectations.

The Irvine, California-based EV maker has had a rocky start to the year, marked by job cuts, plans to keep output flat and a sharp decline in its market value. Rivian said last month that it would halt work on its planned factory near Atlanta in order to accelerate the introduction of a new lower-priced model targeting the mass market.

One of the few pure-play EV makers chasing market leader Tesla Inc., Rivian has stumbled in its efforts to scale up manufacturing since going public in 2021. The company makes three battery-powered models: a pickup and sport utility vehicle for consumers, and a commercial van for shareholder Inc.

Rivian warned in February that deliveries would be down 10% to 15% in the first quarter from the prior three months. It also said production would be around 13,500 due to supply-chain changes and the introduction of new materials.

Despite a better-than-expected quarter, investors were disappointed that Rivian on Tuesday stood by its 2024 output target of about 57,000 units, roughly flat with the prior year. Analysts expected about 57,440 on average.

Its shares reversed an initial gain, falling 1.2% as of 8:56 a.m. before regular trading in New York. The stock tumbled 53% this year through Monday.

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