• Mar 15, 2011
It's been nearly five months since Avera Motors teased us with a view of the company's first product – an inexpensive, highly efficient vehicle that's been designed to be fun to fling. Since then, it seems that the start-up came under the ire of Hyundai for using the Avera name. Rather than lock horns in an expensive legal battle, the Florida-based automaker simply agreed to change its name. You'll now find the company sailing under the Rivian Automotive banner.
According to news reports, Hyundai believed Avera was too similar to the company's Azera nameplate. Hyundai filed suit against the new company in November of last year.

The new name pays homage to the Indian River, which flows through Rivian's home town of Brevard County, Florida.

Perhaps more interesting is that the automaker has begun the first road tests of the prototype we saw teased so long ago. Supposedly, the vehicle has been out and about in the Sunshine state for a while now. Let us know if you've seen anything odd on the roads around Rockledge, Florida.

[Sources: Rivian Motors, FloridaToday]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 11 Comments
      • 3 Years Ago
      so is this like a new domestic automaker???...
      • 3 Years Ago
      Deja vu? Hyundai went through the very same years back with the Elantra because Lotus thought folks would've confused people looking for an Elan. Hence, in some countries, it was sold as the Lantra.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Holy crap! I didn't realize Avera/Rivian was so close to me! It's like, a 25 minute drive... I have to cross the Indian River to get anywhere on the mainland (I live on the barrier island in Brevard)
        • 3 Years Ago
        Oh, believe me, if I had seen what appeared to be a pre-production test vehicle on the road, I'd have my camera out in two seconds flat. Hasn't happened yet :(
        • 3 Years Ago
        So get out the zoom lens and do a little spying. Ha!
      • 3 Years Ago
      I live in the Rockledge area and when I googled their parent company Mainstream Engineering, they are in a shed like building. I live in the area and have not seen the vehicles outside the building. What I hear from a Mainstream source is that they built a new body with an existing BMW or Mazda engine, powertrain, exhaust and other interior parts. What else can you build in a short time with few employees and $1 million space coast funding? really space coast funding?

      I would be curious to see what they tested. I am sure it is nothing but wind tunnel test for their exterior styling. It is easy to come up with good styled vehicle, engineering for reliability, safety and noise takes some really good engineers and funding. If they don't have more than 10 employees, stay in a shed and cannot explain about the tests being done, they are in business for a different reason. They are around from 2009 as I read online, but I have not seen one advertisement for recruitment in local papers. They say they are creating jobs, but without recuritment...?? Something does not add up! If they are hiring, my son wants to apply here for sure!

      If someone sees the so-called 1st product, post here and I will be out in Barnes blvd. with my SLR and powerful zoom. They could have changed the name to "Rivera" though! River + Avera..:-)
        windjammer540
        • 3 Years Ago
        You need to get your facts straight b-4 shooting your mouth off! You are not even slightly close to what actually is.
        • 3 Years Ago
        I live just south in Melbourne. I've never even heard of them before. I'll be sure to keep a look out down here. Probably won't see anything though.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Dont worry, Hyundai. Noone, besides owners, know what the flip an Azera is in the first place.
      • 3 Years Ago
      I've been following them for over a year now. Millions of dollars of investment by some of the country's largest independent investors. 100 Plus employees as of today, about ninety are engineers, including the owner, Scarringe and his Father. Some Big names in auto engineering are both at the offices daily in Rockledge, and working from thier home. This has been the brainchild of the son for over 20 years, and now with oil demand high, this project has leaped of the drawing board and onto 1-95 Mile Marker 190, both south and north. Been trying to get a shot of the car, have 3 separate confirmed views, sleek with many thin plastic pieces to foil me and the camera.

      Kennedy Space Center, Cape Canaveral, is 20 miles away from the operation, we know of 9 KSC engineers leaving thier jobs to work on this team.
        • 3 Years Ago
        You are misinformed friend! No private investors have taken the big risk yet, but Space Florida has donated some of the State's funds - about million dollars.

        They have about 10 engineers at Rivian. They cannot hold moe than 20 people in their shed. Trust me, I have driven by their building. 50 engineers are at the parent company Mainstream in few buildings, which has nothing to do with Rivian.

        If you do get a shot, please post it online! I am curious to see the styling, though I read in online forums that they used some other vehicles body, engine, PT parts and interior.