Electric-vehicle maker Rivian says it has delayed construction of its previously announced $5-billion manufacturing campus in Stanton Springs, Ga. The EV-only producer now plans to start making its upcoming R2 SUVs at an existing plant in Normal, Ill., but says it still plans to build the Georgia facility.

The announcement of the construction pause came after Rivian shared its annual financial results last month, revealing a $5.4-billion net loss over the year. CEO R. J. Scaringe told investors that the company is focused on cost efficiency and long-term growth.

Rivian had planned to start construction of the 16-million-sq-ft Georgia plant early this year, for production to begin in 2026. Grading and site preparation are complete, under a state-led project, but it was not immediately clear whether Rivian’s contractor for the plant, Clayco, Inc., had mobilized. Anthony Johnson, president of Clayco’s industrial business unit, said in a statement to ENR that Clayco and Rivian “remain dedicated partners.”

“When the time is right to break ground and advance construction of the plant, our Clayco team will be ready to support and execute our plans seamlessly,” Johnson said. The contractor did not share additional details.

Moving R2 manufacturing to Rivian’s Illinois plant will allow production to start earlier in 2026 than originally planned and save more than $2.25 billion in capital spending, product development and supplier sourcing compared with launching R2 production in Georgia, according to the automaker. 

Rivian did not say how soon it would resume construction in Georgia as it prepares to launch R2 production in Illinois, but Scaringe wrote in an op-ed published in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution March 8 that the company is “committed to building our future in Georgia.”

“This shift in launch cadence puts us in a stronger position prior to launching our Georgia plant,” he wrote, adding that the company is adjusting its plans to “stay ahead” of high interest rates and geopolitical uncertainty. 

In his op-ed, Scaringe wrote that the Georgia plant “remains an extremely important part of our strategy to scale production of R2 and R3.” Rivian said the Illinois plant has capacity to produce 215,000 units per year, including the R2 and other vehicles. Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp has said the planned plant would have capacity for as many as 400,000 vehicles per year.

The R2 and R3 are SUVs, whereas the Normal plant had previously built only Rivian's first generation R1T truck and the larger R1S SUV. The Illinois Dept. of Commerce & Economic Opportunity said it is in discussions with Rivian for a new economic development package for building the R2 in the state. 

To build and operate the plant in Georgia, the state offered Rivian an incentive package worth $1.5 billion in discretionary funding, tax credits and local incentives. Under the terms of the economic development agreement, Rivian has until the end of 2030 to invest at least $5 billion and create 7,500 full-time jobs. 

A spokesperson for the Georgia Dept. of Economic Development noted that the agreement has not been amended since Rivian announced the construction pause. In a statement, the Georgia Chamber of Commerce said that Rivian still plans to begin operations within the period allowed under the agreement. 

“The Georgia Chamber remains confident in both Rivian and the viability of the Stanton Springs North site,” the business group said in its statement. 

Meanwhile, Rivian “will care for the site in the run-up to construction with the goal of minimizing inconveniences this delay may cause,” Scaringe wrote in the op-ed.