EV maker Rivian denies media report on production talks with VW

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) -Rivian denied a media report on Tuesday that said the U.S. electric vehicle company was in early talks with Volkswagen to extend their partnership beyond a recently announced software joint venture.

Shares of Rivian dipped 1.5% in extended trade.

German newspaper Handelsblatt reported, citing people familiar with the matter, that an extended partnership might include producing Rivian’s smaller and less expensive R2 SUV at VW’s South Carolina plant, which is currently being built and where it so far plans to produce Scout-branded SUVs and pickups from 2026.

Rivian said it had not changed its plans to start producing the R2 at its manufacturing facility in Normal, Illinois, followed by production at a planned Georgia plant.

“There are no plans for production of vehicles with Volkswagen Group,” a Rivian spokesperson said in an email to Reuters.

Volkswagen declined to comment, saying its clear focus was on the proposed joint venture with Rivian. Its U.S. brand Scout did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

(Reporting by Abhirup Roy in San Francisco and Victoria Waldersee in BerlinAdditional reporting by Noel Randewich in Oakland, CaliforniaEditing by Matthew Lewis)

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