Loose Fasteners Trigger Huge Rivian Recall

Estimated read time 3 min read

Almost every vehicle it’s made needs to be fixed.

Rivian, an EV automaker based out of Irvine, California, has had a fairly rough start of production. The company was founded back in 2009 but the first production vehicle rolled off the line in September of last year. Now the company is recalling almost all of the electric trucks, vans, and SUVs it’s delivered to customers and it’s all thanks to a single fastener.

Learn why EVs are causing big problems in Florida here.

According to multiple reports, a loose fastener with connects the upper control arm and steering knuckle was discovered to not have been installed correctly. Out of an abundance of caution, the automaker is recalling about 13,000 vehicles even though it estimates only about 1 percent of those are impacted by the issue.

While there could be some altruistic intentions behind this move, it’s also likely decision makers realize how devastating a fatal accident caused by this problem could be for the fledgling brand. Already, Rivian is dealing with public image problems after it public stock soared in value to the point it was the second most valuable automaker in the US, surpassing Ford and GM, only to see its stock deflate by about 67 percent this year.

There have been plenty of questions about Rivian’s ability to ramp up to meet its production goals, despite the company gradually increasing monthly output to get there. Just like everyone else, the automaker has struggled through supply chain shortages which threaten to throw everything off while pushing prices ever higher.

According to Rivian, the recall fix will take mere minutes to perform. The company says in a filing with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that in August it learned of one of its vehicles suffering from the upper control arm separating from the steering knuckle. That’s when the company claims to have launched an investigation into the matter.

In late September, Rivian claims it learned of several more instances like the first. Although no deaths or injuries have been reported, the automaker is urging owners to stop driving their Rivians until the fastener can be properly tightened.

In early September, Rivian announced a strategic partnership with Mercedes-Benz for the production of bespoke large EV vans. Amazon has also started using Rivian delivery vans in certain areas of the US.

There have been three recalls in total for Rivian since last September. However, the first two involved only a few hundred vehicles.

Sources: The Detroit News, The Wall Street Journal

Images via Rivian

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