Rivian Files Patent For Star Wars Inspired Off-Road Feature

Rivian has been putting out new features left and right. At this point, it’s hard even to dream up something you’d actually want in an electric truck/SUV that Rivian hasn’t already considered. Everyone has just now calmed down after the announcement of Rivian’s “Tank Turn,” now the coolest electric truck maker has patented a new turning feature with a name borrowed from Star Wars; “K Turn,” or as fellow Star Wars nerds might know it, a drop-kick Koiogran turn.

Rivian R1T climbing a sandy hill as they patent a new Star Wars inspired K-turn feature
Rivian R1T | Rivian

What does the Rivian K-turn do? 

According to Wookieepedia, “A Koiogran turn, or drop-kick Koiogran turn, was a combat maneuver developed by Kendra Novar that was utilized by starfighter pilots to escape pursuit. By pushing the throttle forward with one hand and twisting the control stick with the other, the pilot would lose all forward momentum and loop-roll in another direction.”

Although Rivian trucks don’t fly (yet), the K turn is still a super cool concept for off-roaders. The Tank Turn is a very cool feature, but in sand or other soft surfaces, the Tank turn can dig a hole for the truck, getting it stuck. Seeing as how that is pretty much the opposite of what most off-road adventures are going for, Rivian decided to add another slick, and in this case, Star Wars-themed, turning setting. 

According to Car and Driver, the K turn will use the same four-motor (one per wheel) system to hold one of the inside rear wheels and allow the vehicle to pivot around it, dramatically reducing its turning radius. 

Rivan’s K turn is built off the Tank turn

The Tank turn is exactly what it sounds like. The one side of the Rivian’s wheels goes forward while the other side goes backward, just like a tank can do. This allows for an about-face style turn that is essentially a perfect 180-degree turn. The reason this is so cool for an off-road truck is that if you find yourself stuck on a tight trail, the tank turn feature can spin the truck around without having to do a much wider three- (or 100-) point turn.

However, this style of turning can dig a bit of a hole on less stable surfaces like sand and could potentially make a bad situation worse. As we have learned, Rivian is all about function, and that won’t fly for them. So, the K-turn will use the same system as yet another tool in the Rivian’s bag of tricks.  

What features Will the Rivian R1S and R1T have? 

Rivian R1S driving through the desert at sunset
Rivian R1S | Rivian

Along with the tank turn and K-turn, Rivian is doing as much as possible to make the R1T and R1S as usable and driver-focused as possible. Rivian recently announced that the R1T would offer a fold-out electric cooktop for outdoor adventures. They also offer a series of custom wraps and even a huge network of trail chargers for off-roading “fuel” top-offs. 

Lastly, if all of that innovation wasn’t enough, Rivian is also only going to have 10 dealers. This means customers will no longer have to deal with salespeople and dealerships to buy a car. Rivian is going direct to the consumer. While this is far from the most exciting innovation Rivian is pushing, this may be the most extreme. I would doubt that many automakers will add electric stoves to their cars, but if this dealership-less model works, there’s a strong chance other marques will follow. 

Rivian is coming soon, and that isn’t soon enough

Rivian R1T driving through the woods with surfboards in the back
Rivian R1T | Rivian

We, the Biscuits, are very excited for the Rivian R1T and R1S to start deliveries. If these electric trucks can deliver on half of the promises they have made, it will easily be the most exciting and innovative EV we have seen yet. Long live Rivian. 

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