Rivian R1T and R1S capable of performing a "tank turn"
As we edge closer to the start of production of the R1T and R1S, Rivian has been revealing new details about its upcoming electric pickup truck and SUV.
The latest tidbit is the vehicles’ ability to turn on the spot—a full 360 degrees—by spinning the left and right wheels in opposite directions, a feature referred to by Rivian as a “tank turn,” for obvious reasons.
The feature is made possible by Rivian’s drive system which relies on four independently controlled electric motors. We can imagine it proving handy on tight work sites and off-road trails.
You’ll notice that Rivian has demonstrated the feature on loose soil. Although it should also function on a hard surface, this isn’t recommended by Rivian due to increased wear involved.
The R1T and R1S have been designed around Rivian’s own platform, a skateboard-style design where the batteries lie flat in the floor and electric motors sit at the axles. For the R1T and R1S, Rivian promises battery sizes ranging from 105 to 180 kilowatt-hours, the latter claimed to deliver over 400 miles of range on a single charge. Power will range between 400 and 750 horsepower, with the output dependent on the battery size.
Rivian said at the vehicles’ 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show debut that production is due to start in late 2020, at a former Mitsubishi plant in Normal, Illinois. The company just raised $1.3 billion in its latest round of funding, the fourth this year, and thus is in a good position to start production on schedule. The R1T has been priced to start at $69,000 and the R1S at $72,500.