Hybrids & Electrics

Does Rivian Have a Better EV Warranty Than Tesla?

We’re currently counting down the days until the R1T and R1S officially hit Rivian dealerships. But before they do, the American EV company continues to trickle out more information about the potential ownership experience. For example, how it plans to offer charging stations outside of urban environments. And now, Rivian has revealed another bit of vital info for car buyers: the warranty details.

Rivian just released warranty details for its upcoming EVs

A blue Rivian R1T parked on a gravel road in a forest
Rivian R1T | Rivian

Like most car companies, Rivian has an overall bumper-to-bumper warranty as well as area-specific warranties. Since the R1T and R1S are EVs, that means Rivian’s powertrain warranty actually has two sub-categories. E.g., there’s one warranty for the battery pack and one just for the electric drivetrain. And overall, the Rivian warranties are fairly generous, InsideEVs reports.

Firstly, every Rivian vehicle has a 5-year/60,000-mile comprehensive bumper-to-bumper warranty. This covers any parts and labor associated with fixing a defect. The drivetrain warranty is even longer at 8 years/175,000 miles. Rivian’s anti-corrosion warranty also lasts for 8 years, but has unlimited miles.

Finally, there’s the Rivian battery-pack warranty. And it’s here where the average EV warranty starts to diverge slightly from an ICE car’s warranty. While an ICE car’s gas-tank capacity doesn’t shrink time, an EV battery’s capacity does. But, while the process is inevitable, it’s also gradual. So, if you lose a lot of capacity in a short amount of time, something’s gone wrong.

As such, Rivian’s battery-pack warranty covers not just the battery hardware but also battery capacity. What that means is, if the battery fails entirely or drops below 70% within the warranty period, Rivian will replace it. And this period is 8 years or 175,000 miles, whichever comes first.

How long is the Tesla warranty compared to the Rivian one?

But, while Rivian’s warranty seems generous, how does it compare to what Tesla offers? Very well, as it turns out. Rivian actually “equals or betters Tesla in critical areas,” Autoblog reports.

Tesla also offers a comprehensive bumper-to-bumper warranty. However, it only lasts for 4 years or 50,000 miles, whichever comes first. There is a “Supplemental Restrain System” warranty that matches Rivian’s 5-year/60,000-mile bumper-to-bumper one, though.

The black front seats and wood-trimmed dashboard of a 2018 Tesla Model 3
2018 Tesla Model 3 interior | Tesla

Tesla also doesn’t have an equivalent to Rivian’s anti-corrosion warranty. The closest thing is its “Parts, Body & Paint Repair Limited Warranty,” which only covers the sheet metal for 1 year or 12,500 miles. Incidentally, that failing touchscreen that Tesla’s been having problems with? Its warranty only lasts 2 years or 25,000 miles.

In terms of its electric powertrain warranties, Tesla doesn’t split up the battery pack and drivetrain. There’s just one warranty, which has the same ‘70% capacity’ clause that Rivian does. However, while the R1T and R1S have the same warranties, it differs for Tesla’s EVs. And in every case, Tesla loses out to Rivian.

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The Model X and Model S, for example, have an 8-year/150,000-mile warranty, Automotive News reports. However, while the Model 3 and Model Y also have 8-year warranties, they have lower mileage limits. Depending on the specific battery pack, the Model 3’s and Model Y’s warranty lasts either 100,000 or 120,000 miles.

However, it’s worth noting that Tesla, unlike Rivian, offers a used-vehicle warranty. Admittedly, it only lasts for one year or 10,000 miles, Roadshow reports, but it’s still something. Though it’s worth pointing out that, as of this writing, there aren’t any used Rivians.

How do they compare to other EVs?

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So, on paper, Rivian’s warranty is seemingly better than what Tesla offers. Plus, if you want to use your Tesla as a power source, that voids the warranty, because it requires aftermarket modifications. Rivian, on the other hand, has that capability built-in, The Drive reports. But how do these EV companies’ warranties compare to what other automakers offer?

Besides its standard warranty, Toyota has a specific one for its EV and hybrid models’ batteries. Originally it only lasted eight years or 100,000 miles. However, starting in 2020, Toyota increased it to a 10-year/150,000-mile warranty, Car and Driver reports.

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Volkswagen, like Rivian and Tesla, covers its EVs’ batteries with a 70%-capacity warranty; that includes the ID.4. However, while it’s an 8-year warranty, the mileage is limited to 99,418 miles, Autoblog reports. The Ford Mustang Mach-E’s battery warranty slightly beats it out at eight years or 100,000 miles, AN reports. And the Hyundai Kona Electric matches the Mach-E’s battery warranty on mileage limits, but can last up to 10 years.

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