Rivian Beats Tesla Off the EV Pickup Truck Production Line

Rivian Beats Tesla Off the EV Pickup Truck Production Line

by Gill D on September 15, 2021

Start-up for electric vehicles Rivian is the first automaker to deliver an electric truck to the consumer market, beating Tesla, GM, and others in a field that is likely to be heavily contested in the coming years.

Rivian founder and CEO RJ Scaringe tweeted on Tuesday that the company's first R1T pickup for a customer had just rolled off the manufacturing line at its Normal, Illinois plant.

RJ Scaringe said:

“After months of building pre-production vehicles, this morning our first customer vehicle drove off our production line in Normal!  Our team’s collective efforts have made this moment possible. Can’t wait to get these into the hands of our customers!”

Scaringe tweeted photos of workers on the production line cheering as several R1Ts made their way along.

Rivian acknowledged that the automobiles being manufactured are for sale. She declined to comment on the company's intentions for ramping up production, such as how many trucks were made on Tuesday or who will be the first to receive the vehicles.

The start of manufacturing, which has been postponed multiple times, comes just weeks after the company, which is financed by Amazon and Ford Motor, submitted a confidential draft registration form for an IPO.

Rivian is projected to be the first of only a few automakers to produce an electric pickup by the end of the year. The GMC Hummer EV pickup is expected to arrive this fall, followed by EV start-up Lordstown Motors, Ford, and Tesla, which just put back the delivery of its Cybertruck from this year to late 2022.

Rivian’s Models

The R1T Launch Edition will be the first and only R1T available, and it will come with a 300-mile battery pack. The Launch Edition includes a number of driver-assistance systems as well as a variety of entertainment and communication technology. However, if you miss out on the Launch Edition, Rivian will eventually offer both the entry-level Explore and the well-equipped Adventure models.

The Basic Specs

The 2022 R1T comes standard with all-wheel drive, thanks to a setup similar to the Tesla Model X, in which each wheel is driven by its own electric motor. The R1T has up to 800 horsepower and a reported timing of 3.0 seconds from 0 to 60 mph. At launch, an adjustable air suspension system will be standard, allowing the clearance height to be adjusted from eight to fourteen inches. The R1T has all-wheel drive with an electric motor at each wheel in every model. This enables the R1T to do a Tank Turn, in which the electric motors rotate the left wheels in the opposite direction of the right wheels, spinning the truck around its axis.

According to Rivian, each R1T can haul more than 11,000 pounds and has a payload capacity of 1760 pounds. Buyers who wish to use the truck's capabilities should obtain the model with the largest battery pack. Towing such a huge trailer will undoubtedly deplete the battery faster than cruising unladen, therefore buyers who plan to use the truck's capabilities should get the model with the largest battery pack.

Leather, wood, and huge displays for both the instrument cluster and the infotainment system adorn the R1interior. T's The R1T comes with a spacious trunk under the hood, a large storage compartment behind the cab (but in front of the bed), and a lockable in-bed compartment. Rivian claims the truck contains a total of 12 cubic feet of lockable storage. Gear may be mounted over the bed and cabin thanks to the truck's extensible and collapsible crossbar system. Three 110-volt outlets and an air compressor are located in the bed.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety have not crash tested the 2022 R1T. (IIHS). Rivian claims that all models will be equipped with hands-free driver aid technology, dubbed Driver+.

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