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Futuristic Rivian EV pickup truck getting close to reality

By James Raia
The much-anticipated, pending electric pickup truck Rivian will begin its introduction to the public this summer when customers who have preordered the R1T model will be invited to test drive it.

With its national tour, the carmaker seeks to educate its buyers about the pickup truck’s major features. Tour dates will be announced soon.

The electric Rivian pickup truck will debut in the summer of 2021.
The electric Rivian pickup truck will debut in the summer of 2021.

Rivian has described its truck, rated with an 11,000-pound towing capacity, will be positioned between a mid-size and full-size truck and will comfortably seat five adults. A trailer hitch is located behind a cover and is accessible by removing two screws.

According to the manufacturer, the R1T is 18 feet, 1 inch long and 7 feet, 3 inches wide with side mirrors out. A standard cab Ford F-150 is 17 feet, 5 inches long and the super cab model is 20 feet, 3 inches long.

Rivian will provide pending customers test drives

Rivian also gave additional details. The R1T has a 54.8-inches wide and 22.7-inches deep front trunk. The manufacturer said cargo is “a clean, lockable space large enough to fit a half-dozen full grocery bags or two full-sized coolers.”

The compartment will open and close with the app, key fob, in-vehicle controls or an exterior button under the lightbar. LED lights turn on automatically and there’s a 12-volt outlet. A removable platform on the floor reveals another storage compartment.

The Rivian pickup truck will include a mid-truck storage area.
The Rivian EV pickup truck will include a mid-truck storage area.

A gear tunnel runs the width of the truck right behind the rear seats. It’s 65 inches across and Rivian said it’s for stowing “slushy snowboards and sandy beach blankets to keep the mess out of the cab.”

The space is watertight and lined with an easy-to-clean material. Doors serve as a seat or a step for accessing the roof and can be opened automatically using the app, in-vehicle controls, or buttons on the bed rail. There’s more storage in the door panels.

The bed length extends to 83.6 inches with the tailgate down and measures 54 inches with it up. The bed will hold the proverbial 4 x 8 sheet of plywood flat. A panel eliminates the gap when the tailgate is down, creating a continuously flat surface front to back.

Lots of storage in and around the truck bed

The bed is made from reinforced, compression-molded structural composite and Rivian said it is resistant to corrosion and wear. There are two LED lights, one on each side, that turn on automatically when the tailgate opens. You can do that with the app, fob, in-vehicle controls, or a button on the bed rail. There are also forged steel tie-downs in each corner and four more tie-downs on the rails that double as mounting points for cargo crossbars.

On the bed wall near the tailgate are two 15-amp, 110-volt plugs. Underneath the bed is another lockable storage space. It’s large enough for the full-size spare, is weather- and dust-proof, and has a drain plug at the bottom so you can use it as a cooler.

Rivian will offer two lockable tonneau covers, one power and one manual, turning the bed into an extra 29 cubic feet of weatherproof storage space. There’s also an in-bed air compressor.

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James Raia, a syndicated columnist in Sacramento, California, publishes a free weekly automotive podcast and electronic newsletter. Sign-ups are available on his website, www.theweeklydriver.com. He can be reached via email: james@jamesraia.com.

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James Shoe
6 months ago

Why no mention of the range or recharge times? I would think that if you are promoting an EV with 11,000lb towing capacity this would be relevant info to include in your press release.