In response to the wave of bad publicity, CEO RJ Scaringe partially backtracked two days after announcing the hikes, saying the automaker would respect the original prices for customers who ordered before March 1.
Rivian delivered 920 vehicles last year after starting production in September.
"Earlier this week, we announced pricing increases that broke the trust we had worked to build with you," Scaringe wrote in an open letter to customers. "We wrongly decided to make these changes apply to all future deliveries, including pre-existing configured preorders."
"We also didn't manage communications well," he wrote. "We didn't give you enough insight into what was driving these decisions. The most important aspect of what we are building is our relationship with all of you."
In addition to the price rollback for reservation holders, the Rivian CEO said the automaker would reinstate orders canceled on or after March 1, with the original configuration, pricing and delivery timing — for customers who request it.
Scaringe also explained Rivian's rationale for the price hikes, given fast-rising costs that have affected all automakers. "Everything from semiconductors to sheet metal to seats has become more expensive," Scaringe wrote last week. "And with this, we have seen average new-vehicle pricing rise more than 30 percent since 2018."