Can the 2022 Rivian R1T Really Be the Best Pickup Truck on the Market?

The electric pickup truck revolution is coming, and we all better prepare for it. Although the Ford Lightning has made a big boom, and the Tesla Cybertruck is, well, technically a thing, the 2022 Rivian R1T has been the golden boy anyone who has been paying attention is waiting to see. Rivian has systematically been working toward making not only the best electric pickup truck on the market but the best pickup truck, period – and they may have done it. 

Rivian electric pickup truck parked in the desert
Rivian R1T | Rivian

The 2022 Rivian R1T might be the best pickup truck on the market

Aside from the Rivian R1T being the first major production electric truck to hit the U.S. market, it very well may be the best truck, period. The Folks at MotorTrend have been lucky enough to actually drive the very truck that may catalyze the electric truck movement. 

Like everything else in these wacky modern times, the idea of an electric truck has been subject to the politics of the day. Some automakers are worried that although the pickup truck is beyond popular (it’s more of a belief system), most truck drivers are too politically conservative to go for it. Aside from that sentence (and the politics it references) being absurd, the Rivian R1T might be so good that it bludgeons through any political barriers. 

Could it be? After years of some of the most politically dissonant times in recent history, that the Rivian R1T could mend our country. It would be the most American thing ever to have our nation’s biggest issue solved by a pickup truck. 

What is the Rivian R1T and why is it the best pickup truck? 

Rivian has given this pickup truck so many features it’s hard even to know where to begin. From built-in electric kitchens to Star Wars-themed maneuvering abilities, the 2022 Rivian R1T truly should be the best pickup truck ever made. 

The Rivian is closer in size to a Honda Ridgeline or Ford Maverick than an F-150 or GMC Sierra. However, it has all the power of the big trucks and then some. The two motors at each axle deliver 415 horsepower and 413 lb-ft of torque to the front wheels and 420 hp and 495 lb-ft of torque, and Rivian claims a 0-60 time of 3.0 seconds. 

Can electric trucks go off-road? 

Rivian R1T charging a dune shows how it might just be the best pickup truck on the market
Rivian R1T | Rivian

The Rivian R1T is no tarmac-only city truck. Although the interior is finished more like a Caddilac than a Ford, the Rivian R1T was made to crush the trails and boulders. Part of what makes the Rivian so dominant off-road is that it has a motor at each wheel that directly controls the amount of power for each wheel to gain maxim hook up, otherwise known as torque vectoring. 

Also, because of these four motors, Rivian has made multiple driving modes that utilize this feature for several different applications. For on-road driving, MotorTrend testers verify that the “All-Purpose” mode is super snappy and tons of fun, even from stoplight to stoplight. 

The torque-vectoring isn’t just an off-road feature. MotorTrend mentions using it to throw the best pickup truck on the market through some tarmac corners, too.

 “We activated Sport mode, pushed hard enough into a sharp bend to provoke a little understeer, and then nailed the throttle. We felt the R1T’s torque-vectoring superpowers at work: The outside-rear motor powered up and brought the R1T’s nose around, and we blasted out of the turn like the Millennium Falcon—and this with four occupants in the cab, several hundred pounds of gear in the bed, and all-terrain tires.” 

The Rivian R1T is going to change the game

There is still plenty of work to be done in the push for a more electrified future. Infrastructure is still the largest hurdle in this campaign, but customer buy-in is also a major piece of the puzzle. If Rivian production can deliver on all the lofty promises of the testers and PR stunts, the Rivian should make a serious dent on that part. 

With more features that one journalist can explain, this writer humbly suggests that drivers interested in the future of electric trucks seriously look at what Rivian is doing. This truly may be the best pickup truck ever made. 

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