Rivian's R1T pickup and R1S SUV debuted to rave reviews a few years ago, including from yours truly. They picked up all sorts of coveted industry accolades. But what's it actually like to live with a Rivian long-term? 

Now that Rivians have been out in the wild for a while, we can lean on early customers to understand how the startup's vehicles hold up in the real world. In a recent video, YouTuber Ben Sullins recapped his first two years of Rivian R1T ownership.

Get Fully Charged

What to know about Rivian

The California-based electric-vehicle startup started selling its debut model, the R1T pickup, in late 2021. It followed that up with an R1S SUV built on the same platform. A $45,000 R2 SUV is slated for 2026 to provide a more mainstream alternative to the high-end R1 series.

He lays out how much his Rivian has cost over time and what he thinks of its software, performance, gimmicky features and more. For the full story, watch the 20-minute video above. Or read on for the highlights.

How durable is the Rivian R1T?

Sullins says he's put around 40,000 miles on his R1T, including at least four 1,000-mile road trips. It's an R1T Launch Edition, so it was one of the first Rivians sold and has four motors. The truck hasn't needed any major repairs, he said, aside from some self-inflicted body damage. 

"I think they've done a good job building a really quality product here," Sullins said. 

Gallery: 2022 Rivian R1T

How much does it cost to own an R1T?

He said his tires lasted for 30,000 miles, more than tires on other EVs he's owned. Replacing those for $2,000 was the only maintenance he's paid for. Remember, this is an EV, so no oil changes needed. 

The truck cost $84,000 and now has resale value of around $60,000, which is a lot of depreciation. But luxury vehicles of any brand tend to shed value quickly once they're driven off the lot. 

Get the best news, reviews, columns, and more delivered straight to your inbox.
For more information, read our
Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

What about software, service and performance?

Aside from some early hiccups, the service experience has been positive, he said. The R1T's infotainment software, too, had some early quirks. The navigation, for example, didn't work properly. He switched off the Alexa function because it was too clunky. But Sullins said Rivian has refined it and added functions at a decent clip.

When it comes to performance, "this thing is absolutely nuts," he said. That applies to both on-road and off-road conditions. That assessment tracks with the quad-motor R1T's specs of over 800 horsepower and over 900 pound-feet of torque. 

Rivian R1T Blue Ridge Parkway

What else should buyers know?

Sullins offered some tips for Rivian buyers. He suggested buying a phone mount, because Rivians don't have Apple CarPlay. And he said to be wary of storing things in the under-bed compartment that's meant for the spare tire. Water can seep in and it can be inconvenient to access. 

As far as gimmicky features go, Sullins said he's used them more than he expected. The Gear Tunnel, a unique cargo compartment that runs width-wise across the truck, is great for golf clubs. And its doors can double as seats for putting on shoes. He uses the R1T's built-in flashlight regularly, too. That pops out of the driver's side door and has become a signature Rivian feature. 

What's the verdict on the R1T after two years?

Good news for anybody on the fence about a Rivian: Sullins caps off the video by saying that he would buy the R1T again. With one caveat.

Instead of the quad-motor truck with the Large pack, he'd get the dual-motor all-wheel-drive version with the bigger Max pack for some extra range.

Contact the author: tim.levin@insideevs.com

Got a tip for us? Email: tips@insideevs.com