Amazon leads US$700-million bet on electric truck maker Rivian

Amazon invests in electric ute and SUV company

Amazon invests in electric ute and SUV company

Electric vehicle startup Rivian on Friday announced a US$700 million investment round led by Amazon, which recently pumped money into a young self-driving auto technology firm.

Similar to Rivian's investment, while Aurora is happy that "a great technology company like Amazon, who thinks hard about the implications of logistics and movement of goods" is involved, it doesn't mean it will lead to a partnership.

Rivian CEO RJ Scaringe characterized the investment as key for Rivian's growth.

Aurora, founded by three researchers in the self-driving field, raised $520 million United States dollars overall, with the online retailer being a huge backer.

Details of Amazon's stake in US -based Rivian were not disclosed, but the company said it will remain independent. We also don't have an exact valuation for the company, although recent reports have them at between $1 billion and $2 billion, according to Reuters.

The company revealed its all-electric R1T pickup and R1S SUV at last November's LA Auto Show, prompting interest by GM and Amazon.

The investment will help startup Rivian launch this R1T pickup and the related R1S SUV.

Williams Racing releases first images of new-spec FW42
On Monday the team used its infamous 2018 vehicle , albeit fitted with a 2019-spec front wing, in order to reveal its new livery and title sponsor, ROKit .

Tesla CEO Elon Musk told investors in August that an electric pickup is "probably my personal favorite for the next product" from the company.

Amazon declined to comment beyond the release.

It's the second time in two weeks that the online giant dropped money on alternative vehicles. The company was among the participants in a $530 million funding round for self-driving startup Aurora Innovation Inc. announced this month.

There had been speculation that General Motors would be part of the investment, however GM provided a statement saying "we admire Rivian's contribution to the future of zero emissions and.an all electric future". GM was not listed as a shareholder, but the legacy company may yet stake its own claim in Rivian.

Aurora is led by Chris Urmson, former head of the Google self-driving auto initiative.

"There's a big push by the entire industry to make electric vehicles and there's a lot of competition downstream, so there will be a lot of choices for consumers", said Michael Thomas Staiger, research analyst at Odeon Capital Group. Investors don't seem anxious, however. The two models share many of their mechanical components.

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