The 2022 Rivian R1T is the first mass-produced electric truck to hit the U.S. market, but that’s hardly the most interesting thing about it. Its electric powertrain notwithstanding, the R1T is unlike any pickup we’ve ever driven—part truck, part sport sedan, and 100 percent amazing. It’s been speculated that pickup buyers are too conservative to embrace electrification, but after our first drive in a pre-production Rivian R1T, both on-road and off-, we think this is the electric truck that will turn them into believers.
There’s so much we want to tell you about the Rivian R1T that it’s difficult to pick a place to start, so let’s begin with the basic layout. Sizewise, the R1T is a tweener, slotting somewhere between a midsize pickup like the Chevy Colorado and a traditional half-tonner like the Ford F-150. The Rivian R1T’s shape and compact bed mimic those of “lifestyle” trucks like the Honda Ridgeline and Hyundai Santa Cruz, but it’ll tow 11,000 pounds according to Rivian and rock crawl like a Jeep Gladiator according to us. And it jets around corners like no pickup truck ever has.
Rivian’s killer apps are its powertrain and suspension setup. The R1T features a four-motor, four-wheel-drive system with a height-adjustable air suspension and interconnected hydraulics for damping and roll control. Like many EVs, it is very quick: The two motors at each axle deliver 415 horsepower and 413 lb-ft of torque to the front wheels and 420 horses and 495 lb-ft to the rears, and Rivian claims a 0-60 time of 3.0 seconds. We’ve yet to turn an R1T over to our test team, but we think that number is eminently possible. For the full story, check out this article from Motor Trend.