The Rivian R1T was a real trendsetter in the EV market. In late 2021, Rivian was the first to officially announce and put into production an EV pickup. Just one year later, it began deliveries of the R1S SUV. While both are excellent vehicles, they will always have limited market appeal due to their high starting MSRPs.

If Rivian wants to thrive and become profitable, it must offer more mainstream models. So, the Californian automaker has been plotting a course toward optimized, high-volume production for its next stage of growth. This means smaller, more affordable vehicles.

In March of this year, we finally got our first look at this new affordable lineup with the Rivian R2, R3, and R3X. The R2 would be showcased at this event, and the midsize crossover, a scaled-down version of the R1S, met prior expectations. 

However, no one was prepared for the R3 and R3X reveal. These two compact Rivian models immediately captured the imagination of the automotive press and the general public. They practically stole the show from the larger R2. 

What Does The R3X Bring To The Table?

R3X Exterior Badging

The Rivian R3X is a slightly more rugged, adventure-focused variant of Rivian’s upcoming R3 hatchback. Rivian describes the R3X as “a performance variant of R3 offering even more dynamic abilities both on and off-road.”

The base R3 will be the smallest, most affordable vehicle in the lineup and is estimated to have a starting MSRP under $40,000. 

The R3X pricing is expected to be a step above that, with unofficial numbers pegging it around $45,000. If this turns out to be accurate, it would put the top trim R3X in the same price bracket as an entry-level R2.

Of course, no final pricing for any of these products has been revealed at the time of writing, other than the R2 starting at around $45,000. But we will update this section once more concrete numbers are announced.

Similarly, we don't have any firm figures yet for horsepower, torque, 0-60 times, or any other performance metrics for the R3X. Still, we do know the general direction of the project and a few high-level R3X technical details have been made available:

  • The R3X shares the same vehicle platform as the larger R2
  • The R3X will come with a tri-motor configuration standard 
  • It will be the highest-performance model of the R3 and will deliver this performance both on and off-road 
  • The battery pack capacity will come in two options, but both are expected to exceed 300 miles of range
  • Rivian’s new 4695 cylindrical battery cells will be used 
  • Will ship with a North American Charging Standard (NACS) port 
  • Can DC fast charge from 10 to 80 percent in about 30 minutes

What Will The Exterior Look Like?

Rivian R3X 3/4 Angle

The R3X is inspired by various classic hatchbacks, with Rivian specifically citing some of the most beloved hot hatches of the 80s and 90s, like the Delta Integrale and Audi Quattro. Naturally, it also adopts many of the same styling cues as the rest of the Rivian lineup, including the brand's distinctive headlight and light bar. 

Julliana Cho, Lead Exterior Designer for the R3, recently said that ”the goal was to keep Rivian’s iconic design language and at the same time evolve it with a fresh new execution.” She said it was a difficult but rewarding process. “Controlling this balance was very challenging for all of us.” 

Of course, the R3X sits lower to the ground than the R1S and R2 and slightly higher than the standard R3. While the long hood and boxy front half of the R3X are distinctly Rivian, it's the sloping rear hatch that gives it that 80s hot-hatch silhouette.

While the R3X shares most of the same body as the standard R3, the performance variant features several notable differences:

  • The R3X has a wider stance and higher ground clearance than the R3
  • Tires are also wider than the R3, with a more aggressive tread and a distinct wheel design
  • Unique front bumper and flared wheel arches
  • Orange accent colors on the side view mirrors, front tow hooks, and wheels
  • R3X badging

Of course, with the launch of this vehicle three years away, changes are likely to occur. 

What Does The Interior Look Like?

Rivian R3X Interior Details

Rivian calls the interior of the R3X “ruggedly playful,” and this description seems fitting. 

The interior is far more bold than that of the standard R3. It is a mix of dark gray and tan with orange and teal accent colors to echo the exterior design elements. 

Rivian has said it's focused on sourcing sustainable materials whenever possible. They also want the car to feel inviting and point specifically towards using cork on the dash as a fun design material. Even in the seats, you will find teal and orange stitching. In the rear, the word Rivian is engraved on the rear seats between the upper and lower seat padding.

Another interesting feature is the seat back storage. While most vehicles feature a map pocket behind the front seats, the R3X has adjustable straps that would be perfect for tying down objects like sleeping bags, beach towels, tents, and anything else you might need when on the road adventuring. You could potentially even spread a large object across the width of the vehicle and use the straps from both seat backs to secure it. 

Rivian R3X Interior

Behind the wheel, the R3X will feel similar to Rivian's other vehicles. The driver's dashboard appears to be a bit smaller than we've seen before, but it fits the vehicle's overall size and steering wheel. The central touchscreen controls most main vehicle functions. The only physical controls are expected to be a pair of haptic scroll wheels and traditional stalks on the steering wheel.

Here are some other features that Rivian has shared about the R3X: 

  • The haptic feedback steering wheel controls are intended to improve operating precision
  • The rear seats fold completely flat, making it ideal for car camping or carrying oversized objects
  • The rear hatch has a split design; you can open up the entire hatch or just the rear window
  • Like Rivian's other vehicles, the R3X will have a long hood with a decent-sized frunk for storage

When Will The R3X Arrive?

Rivian R3X Rear

We are still in the dark about when the R3X will be available for sale. 

So far, Rivian representatives have only announced that it will arrive shortly after the R2. That model is expected in the first half of 2026, so the best-case scenario, we might see the R3X made available in the second half of 2026 or early 2027. 

While reservations have already opened for the R2, they have not yet been made available for the R3X. We also do not know the final pricing at this time.

We will update this page once additional info becomes available, so check back regularly for new announcements. 

Gallery: Rivian R3X

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