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Rivian demo day


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Hey everyone,

  I went to Rivian's demo day this past weekend in Mill Valley, CA.  Other than some really lousy photos in the shadow of a tent on a foggy day, I did get a chance to chatter with a few Rivian employees, and apparently the founder was there but I had nothing in particular to say.  I learned a few things:

  • Their 400 mile range is via a 140 kWh battery, which suggests they aren't very efficient somewhere.  Aero comes to mind...
  • They are testing in Baudette, MN right now, as well as somewhere warm in Arizona
  • They have completed more than 200,000 miles of testing
  • The tank turn is not fake, I saw an engineer's phone-shot video
  • Most of the Rivian test vehicles are Ford F-150 bodies on their skateboard, which nobody notices
  • The interior is really well designed and the stitching is crisp. 
  • Their front trunk could hold an NFL quarterback but not a linebacker
  • The R1T bed is really quite short.  They lose about 4 inches to their cargo tunnel. 
  • The cargo tunnel has interior lighting (not skylights, as I had thought)
  • Several Rivian employees own Tesla cars already
  • Nobody liked the blue R1T that was there, including the rapper who flew in from Atlanta that I was talking to


Advice to Rivian:

  • Pick a better intersection, that was a mess and I'm glad I parked a quarter mile away
  • Have a sign-up sheet
  • Do a better job identifying workers than a blank plastic card with their name written in a sharpie
  • Have organized speaking sessions.  Or something.  I felt like I drove hours for about 15 minutes of interaction
  • Your recruiter needs to be smarter about what jobs are posted; telling two guys to "go online" was a brush-off showing a lack of preparation


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