The Rivian R1T promised so much when it was revealed alongside the R1S SUV back in 2018. Rapid acceleration, fantastic towing capabilities and groundbreaking range. Many were skeptical and doubted it would ever reach the market, as starting a car company from scratch and then seeing through production requires unparalleled levels of capital and expertise. However, Rivian embarked on several rounds of funding and ultimately ended up with a number of large backers such as Ford and Amazon.
With billions of dollars at their disposal, the firm could finally deliver on what they promised and make the R1T and R1S a reality. And, three years later, they are reaching customer hands. Production of the R1T commenced in September meanwhile R1S manufacturing began just a few days ago. In the past month or so numerous reviews of the R1T have been released, with mostly positive feedback.
Gallery: 2022 Rivian R1T: First Drive Review
One such review was by popular tech blog Engadget, who published an in-depth review of the R1T on their YouTube channel. Reviewer Roberto Baldwin noted the R1T was an "impressive beast" that targeted private individuals who like to roadtrip and adventure. Hence it comes with numerous storage spaces such as a gear tunnel and frunk, as well as cool optional features like the $5,000 outdoor kitchen and $2,650 tent. The R1T also has several plugs and sockets as well as an air compressor and hose.
Behind the wheel the R1T is very solid for an all-new car, and drives great with impressive steering. However, ride quality isn't quite as smooth as an ICE Ford F-150 or Dodge Ram. The three second acceleration is unsurprisingly immense and all thanks to the R1T's 835 hp output.
Several settings allow you to configure your R1T to each individual driving need, with the off-road settings making the R1T incredibly capable thanks to its quad-motor setup. The R1T's 314-mile range means plenty of adventuring can be done on a single charge, meanwhile 210 kW DC fast charging means you won't have to wait too long to fill up on range.
Inside Baldwin noted the R1T's materials feel good and there is plenty of storage. There's also lots of neat touches hidden away like a torch and even a portable speaker. The R1T's infotainment is intuitive and works well, however the numerous menus can be frustrating and there is no Apple CarPlay or Android Auto.
The R1T's Driver+ assistance system offers lane-keep assist and adaptive cruise control. It works very well, with the lane-keep only struggling on windy roads. However, Rivian notes it will constantly be improving with OTA updates.
The steering wheel itself feels good and Baldwin thinks it's similar to those of Tesla and Volvo. He mentioned that he was driving a $73,000 R1T Launch Edition which is now sold out. The base $65,000 Explore trim offers the same power and range but just comes with less equipment - Baldwin feels it represents a fantastic deal.
In conclusion, the R1T appears to be a phenomenal all-round electric pickup offering unrivaled capability. And, when you factor in the price of a GMC Hummer EV, you could argue at $65,000 starting it represents good value for money. What are your thoughts on the R1T? Is it your first-choice electric pickup? Let us know in the comments below.