Rivian Automobiles has just launched a pair of all-electric outdoor adventure vehicles following years of subjecting them to the harshest testing and explorers’ feedback.
On September 14th, their first models were driven off the assembly line in their Illinois production plant.
The R1T and the R1S are super-loaded with features specialized for road-tripping to off-road adventure, and they have a range 80 miles greater than Ford’s electric pickup.
“A trail to the middle of nowhere. A great mountain road. A long weekend with the family. We are focused on building products that inspire and enable you to see the world, on-road and way off,” the website reads, and that’s no understatement.
The robustness and capability of these vehicles is dramatic, as were the rigors Rivian put their SUV and pickup through on the way to the dealership.
The battery system was built and tested in environments as varied as 130ºF to -25ºF to ensure the car starts no matter where you left it. The four-wheel drive system will do 0-60 in 3 seconds, can crawl up rocks at inclines as steep as you care to attempt, and the models can wade through three feet of water.
To get some early durability testing, two pickups were sent on a 13,000-mile trip from the tip of Argentina up to Los Angeles, which spanned 100 days and every type of terrain and weather imaginable.
With a price tag starting at $67,500 the vehicles are not exactly cheap, but for the most capable nature-lover who is interested in enjoying the great outdoors as much as they are in saving it, there’s just no other choice out there.
A world of experiences
Automatic driving, LTE-WiFI, a booming stereo system with full tablet connectibility and 120V power outlets turns any trip a little more like an RV-one rather than an on-the-rough camping expedition.
The lack of engine block gives the R1T an extraordinary amount of storage space—68 cubic feet in total, which also allows the them to fit a full-size spare tire as standard, and the innovative “Gear Tunnel.”
Located between the cab and the backseat, the gear tunnel is a third standard storage option idea for skis, wetsuits, muddy or dirty cloths and equipment, or anything else that doesn’t have a home, as well as being the compartment for some unique add-ons.
Rivian will sell you an electric slide-out camp kitchen—complete with crockery that folds in and out of the Gear Tunnel. On top of the all-glass panoramic star-gazing roof is an equipment rack fitted with attachments suitable for most third-party products.
It’s an awful lot to fit into a car, but this month the company announced it had received more than 24,000 preorders for the R1T, which they say will be available with an extended range of 400 miles on a charge by next year.