Rivian showed off its most recent R1T prototype at Overland Expo West. The vehicle has a full suite of overland and off-road components. Is this the first full-electric overland adventure vehicle?
Rivian is trying hard to differentiate its electric vehicle offerings by marketing them as “adventure vehicles.” The Rivian R1T overland edition, debuted at Overland Expo, represents one of the first electric vehicles we’ve seen that is ready for a big adventure.
Electric Vehicle Capabilities
Sure, that big adventure can only span 400 miles before needing to find a recharge station. But 400 miles can get you to some pretty epic adventures from most places in America. Plus, the Rivian’s quick 30-minute recharge time buys you 200 more miles to keep the adventure moving down the road.
And with 750 hp on tap and massive (instant) torque, the all-wheel-drive R1T should be quite good off road. It also offers up an impressive 14 inches of ground clearance with its adjustable air-suspension. Sealed batteries even offer up to a 3-foot water fording depth.
Overland travelers love to overload their vehicles with all sorts of gear. Many literally bring the kitchen sink, stove, and fridge with them on their adventures. This Rivian concept has all of the above and isn’t fazed. It has an impressive 1,700-plus-pound load capacity, so it should be able to carry more of your outdoor gear.
The showstopper feature in the Rivian booth at Overland Expo was the “custom electric stove powered by the vehicle’s battery pack.” The complete kitchen setup slides out from the vehicle’s 350L gear tunnel. The setup features an electric double-induction cooktop, a sink, lots of counter space, and a full set of pots, pans, and dishes.
In the truck’s frunk is also a Dometic 12V fridge. It’s always important to keep your adult beverages frosty and your food cold.
Rivian says, “Users can light their surroundings and cook using the vehicle’s power for over a week using only 20 kWh — or 11 percent — of the largest 180kWh Rivian battery pack.” We’re not sure how the brand came to these numbers, or if they include the use of the fridge, but they are impressive! We also didn’t see much in the way of area lighting on the truck, so we’re not sure how Rivian plans to light up its customers’ surroundings.
With your belly full, you’ll want to find some shelter for the night. Rivian has you sorted with a truck bed rack-mounted Tepui and Rivian co-branded rooftop tent.
The Rivian R1T comes with a built-in air compressor, which should come in handy for airing up and down tasks. This concept truck also has roof rack-mounted Maxtrax recovery boards, a shovel, and a Hi-Lift jack.
The Hi-Lift is relatively useless on this build, as there are no high-lift points on the vehicle. If you tried to use the jack to lift the vehicle off any body part or bumper, the part would just crush. It could possibly be used as a come-a-long, but in this instance, I think it’s just eye candy on the concept truck.
Will We See the Rivian on the Road Any Time Soon?
Rivian is still just a startup. It’s fighting a massive uphill battle to launch a production vehicle in North America. Not to mention the extremely stiff competition in the fast-paced EV space. With massive investments from both Amazon and Ford recently, Rivian is now much more likely to bring its vision to market.
Rivian does have lofty goals and an impressive focus on creating a unique and functional adventure vehicle. Just have a look at its modular bed system patent filing for an example of this creativity.
Expected launch of the production Rivian R1T (truck) and R1S (SUV) is late 2020 for North America. Both will be built at Rivian’s newly acquired 2.6-million-square-foot manufacturing plant in Normal, Illinois.
While you can’t order an overland edition Rivian just yet, or maybe ever, you can put your name on the list to purchase one at www.rivian.com.