General Motors and Amazon could soon invest between $1 billion and $2 billion into Michigan-based electric vehicle hopeful Rivian, according to a report from Reuters.
If finalized, the investment deal is said to be on track for an official announcement later this month. There is always a chance that deal talks fall through, the sources cautioned. Rivian declined comment at this time, and Amazon said that it doesn't comment on rumors/speculation.
Amazon, General Motors and Rivian did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
The Rivian deal would come as its much larger electric vehicle manufacturing rival, Tesla Inc, struggles to stabilize production and deliver consistent profits as it rolls out its flagship Model 3 sedan.
During Tesla's second-quarter earnings call last August, Musk told investors that a pickup truck was "probably my personal favorite for the next product" after Model Y, an SUV model expected to hit the assembly line in November this year. It plans to start selling the model in the fall of 2020, priced at north of $60,000.
The company was founded in Florida in 2009 by MIT mechanical engineering degree-holder R.J. Scaringe to develop a hybrid electric sports vehicle, but shifted its focus to electric trucks a few years later.
Both Amazon and GM have their in-house electric auto efforts in the works, but neither company has jumped into the market of electric pickups yet.
Rivian, founded by MIT mechanical engineering doctor R.J. Scaringe in 2009, aspires to be the first US carmaker to offer a mass-produced, off-road electric pickup, a product Tesla CEO Elon Musk also has been eyeing for quite a while. Following Tesla's lead, both models are built upon a modular skateboard platform that could be licensed to other automakers. The world's largest online retailer has steadily increased its logistics footprint, building warehouses around the world and inking deals with Mercedes as well as cargo airlines to help with delivery. ALJ has agreed to provide nearly $500 million in funding, Sumitomo invested an undisclosed amount, and Standard Chartered provided debt financing of $200 million.
Up until now Rivian has confirmed that it's receiving almost $500 million in funding from Abdul Latif Jameel (ALJ), with additional funding from Sumitomo.