Rivian R1T Production Starts Next Month Kicking Off 750 Horsepower Electric Pickup Revolution

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Tesla is undoubtedly the most famous and most successful electric automaker on the planet, but there’s a new upstart with deep pockets that is looking to make its mark. Rivian first announced its R1T electric pickup in late 2018, and nearly three years later, the company is on the verge of kicking off production.

Although official production was supposed to commence earlier this summer, Rivian CEO RJ Scaringe just revealed this week that production would commence in September… with a few stipulations. “I am excited to report we have started producing vehicles that reflect all of our quality iterations and design refinements,” said Scaringe. “We are currently working with various governing agencies on the final approvals needed for us to make the first deliveries to preorder customers in September.”

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According to Electrek, it seems as though the regulatory agencies that Rivian is currently waiting on could be the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Highway Transportation And Safety Administration (NHTSA). The former handles emissions/fuel economy ratings, while the latter is tasked with overseeing federal crash testing and safety equipment (among other things).

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Leading up to the first trucks rolling off the assembly line, Rivian has opened service centers in Brooklyn, New York; Bellevue, Washington; Normal, Illinois; along with San Francisco and El Segundo, California. If all goes according to schedule, over 100 service centers will be operational by the close of 2023.

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While service centers in close proximity to customers are critical, another crucial aspect of Rivian infrastructure is its charging network. On that front, the company hopes to quickly expand its exclusive Rivian Adventure DC fast-charging network to 600 sites across the U.S. and Canada, providing access to over 3,500 DC chargers by the end of 2023. Rivian says that these chargers can add 140 miles of range within 20 minutes.

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Rivian Waypoints will provide slower 10,000 Level 2 AC chargers near shopping centers, restaurants, hotels, and other popular destinations. “These charging sites will be open to the public and have a J1772 plug, making them compatible with other electric vehicles,” says Rivian. Given that Rivian has some substantial financial backing from both Amazon and Ford, we hope these aspirational figures for infrastructure move along as scheduled.

Rivian’s R1T will be available with either a 100 kWh, 135 kWh, or 180 kWh battery that can deliver up to 400 miles of range per charge. The flagship model features 750 horsepower and can go from a standstill to 60 mph in just 3 seconds. While the R1T could be the first player to hit the market, it will soon face some stiff competition from the Tesla Cybertruck and the Ford F-150 Lightning.

Tags:  ev, rivian, r1t