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Rivian Adds Dual-Motor Options, Lowering Prices

By
Laurance Yap
4
min
Jul 2023
Rivian, the innovative U.S. electric-truck startup, has topped customer-satisfaction rankings with its clever EV pickups. Now, less-expensive dual-motor models lower the price of entry, and are eligible for federal tax credits.
Rivian R1S SUV side profile in blue by a field
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More Affordable New Rivian Models

U.S.-based startup Rivian has become well known for its innovative, capable R1T pickup truck and R1S SUV. Both vehicles launched with high-end trim levels featuring a quad-motor drivetrain, with an electric motor powering each wheel. The 835-hp setup provides exceptional acceleration but also comes with a high price tag. Now, Rivian has introduced two new models to its configurator, both featuring two motors, and lower starting MSRPs.

Orange R1T Adventure in red driving across a field

R1T Adventure: Charge, Range, and Performance

The new entry-level dual-motor R1T Adventure comes with a “standard” 105-kWh battery pack. The starting MSRP of this new model is $73,000, with an EPA estimated range of 270 miles. Its two motors still deliver 533 hp, and let the EV pickup rush from 0 to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds – fast enough to blow away most gasoline sports cars. The Adventure doesn’t skimp on luxury, either. Its interior includes heated and ventilated vegan leather seats, a heated steering wheel, and natural ash wood trim. There are also dual tow hooks, a built-in air compressor, and other nifty gadgets.

Should 270 miles of range not be enough, you can choose a larger 135 kWh battery for an additional $6,000, bringing the starting MSRP to $79,000. The larger battery offers an EPA estimated range of 350 miles. For an additional $10,000, or a starting MSRP of $89,000, the Max Pack battery ups the range to an EPA-estimated 400 miles thanks to its 180-kWh capacity.

There is also a Performance dual-motor all-wheel drive version, which only comes with either the large battery pack or the Max Pack battery. While EPA-estimated ranges remain the same, power output increases to 665 hp, and 0-60 times drop to 3.5 seconds. $84,000 is the starting MSRP for the Performance model with the large pack, and $94,000 buys you the Max Pack. The standard battery pack isn’t available with the Performance dual-motor setup, or the quad-motor setup

Rivian R1S SUV frunk opened by a field

Rivian R1S SUV: Pricing And Options

Rivian’s R1S SUV is also available with dual-motor setups now. With similar styling to the pickup truck, but a spacious SUV interior, it’s a great-looking, technically innovative SUV designed from the ground up for electric power. Starting MSRP for the R1S is $78,000 with dual motors and the standard pack, $5,000 more than the pickup. The pricing structure for other models follows the same logic as the R1T, with the Max Pack dual-motor performance version topping out at $94,000 starting MSRP.

What makes the R1T and R1S special is that they’ve been from the ground up to be EVs. Not based on an existing architecture like, the Ford F-150 Lightning or Ram 1500 REV, they have some advantages. Instead of the battery “fitting into” their architectures, the R1S and R1T are built around the battery packs and drive units. Together, they lay in a flat in a compact package that provides a low center of gravity, but also creates an exceptionally roomy cabin.

On the R1T pickup, the truck bed has a built-in tonneau cover (powered on higher trim levels) and features household plugs to power tools and other gear. The R1T and R1S both feature a front trunk (a “frunk,” if you will) where the engine would normally go in a gasoline truck, expanding upon the numerous storage spaces inside. The R1T also has an ingenious “gear tunnel” between the cabin and the bed with doors on either side, big enough to hold a pop-up tent, or the accessory “camp kitchen” that Rivian offers for outdoor adventures.

Rivian R1S SUV driving on the road in Desert

Rivian Models: Tax Credit Eligibility

Unlike the quad-motor setup, which is sourced from German supplier Bosch, the dual-motor systems in the Rivian R1T and R1S has been developed in-house. Rivian’s “enduro” drive units are made in the U.S., and can be made in larger quantities more quickly than the complicated quad-motor setup, which should help Rivian accelerate production. This, combined with lower starting prices and eligibility for $3,750 in federal tax credits, should help the company sell more of its innovative off-roaders.

A young couple admiring the forest and trees next to their RAV4 Hybrid

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