U.S. EV Maker Rivian Shelves Europe Manufacturing Plans with Mercedes

U.S. electric vehicle (EV) manufacturer Rivian said it was pausing its joint venture plans with Mercedes-Benz to establish a European site to make electric vans, just three months after the two companies announced their partnership. Rivian said it would focus on its U.S. operations, as it tries to become cash flow positive in the market.

“The pausing of this partnership reflects our process of continually evaluating our major capital projects, while taking into consideration our current and anticipated economic conditions,” Rivian CFO McDonough said in a statement.

Rivian is in a fierce competition to cash in on demand for electric vans with established automakers such as Ford and General Motors.

In September, Mercedes-Benz Vans and Rivian signed a memorandum of understanding to produce electric vans in a factory in Poland, Hungary or Romania within the next few years, under a 50-50 joint venture.

Rivian’s commercial business includes its RCV platform in Illinois, where the company builds 100,000 electric delivery vans to Amazon, its biggest investor.

The plan for Mercedes-Benz Vans’ new electric vehicle manufacturing site in Jawor, Poland is not affected and the pace of its electrification strategy remains unchanged, head of Mercedes-Benz Vans Geisen said.

Rivian has also been under pressure from suply chain disruptions, like other EV makers. The company was forced earlier this year to cut its production forecast by half to 25,000 vehicles.

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