Can the EV upstart find success where so many other automakers have failed?
Electric automaker Rivian is developing an electric bike, according to sources speaking to Bloomberg. CEO RJ Scaringe apparently told staff about the e-bike effort during a company meeting on Friday, noting that a small team is currently working on it.
Bloomberg says it’s unclear if Scaringe was talking about a battery-assisted bicycle (aka an e-bike) or an electric motorcycle. However, Scaringe has teased an entry into micromobility in the past and the company has patents for e-bike designs and components.
Despite all the hype behind EVs, electric bikes have actually outsold electric and plug-in hybrid cars in the US since 2021. And in Europe, e-bike sales are on track to overtake the number of all cars sold, electric or not. That’s a tempting category to enter for a company trying to find a path to profitability.
Last week, Rivian laid off about six percent of its workforce for the second time in less than a year as part of broad cost-cutting efforts. Rivian has struggled to hit manufacturing targets amidst supply chain problems and a looming EV price war.
Despite the revenue opportunity presented by the new category, car makers have yet to find any notable success with their e-bikes despite brands like Porsche, Mercedes, Jeep, GM, Hummer, and others all giving it a go. Even e-bike darlings like Rad Power and VanMoof have struggled recently after finding success during the covid lockdowns. Would you buy a Rivian e-bike?