NEW YORK — Rivian Automotive, a company that has delivered about 150 electric pickup trucks mostly to employees, has surpassed General Motors to become the nation’s second most valuable automaker.
The California company’s market valuation exceeded Ford’s in its first day a public company Wednesday. Its shares rose 10% at the opening bell Thursday pushing its valuation over $90 billion. That’s greater than Detroit’s GM, one of the biggest auto manufacturers in the world, which sold more than 6.8 million vehicles globally last year.
Rivian’s goal this year is to produce 1,000 electric vehicles. The company rolled out its first vehicle, the R1T electric truck, in September and plans to launch its electric SUV, the R1S, in December.
Ford is one of Rivian’s high-profile backers, having invested a half-billion dollars into the company in 2019. The other is Amazon, which held a 20% stake in Rivian ahead of the initial public offering.
Rather than focusing on the number of vehicles it has sold, investors are anticipating vast potential for Rivian with the appetite growing for electric vehicles. And Rivian’s soaring stock price pulled almost all companies in the EV sector higher Thursday.
Lordstown Motors Corp. jumped 11%, Nikola Corp. 3%, Fisker Inc. more than 8% and China’s Nio Inc. rose 4%.
Shares of Tesla, the world leader in electric vehicle sales, were up less than 1% Thursday. After making a promise on Twitter, Tesla CEO Elon Musk sold about 4.5 million shares of the electric carmaker’s stock for more than $5 billion, according to regulatory filings late Wednesday.
Tesla has amassed a market value of more than $1 trillion. So far this year it has sold around 627,300 vehicles.