Tesla may have introduced the public to the revolutionary electric vehicles like the Model S and the Cybertruck, but Rivian is making a splash on the EV stage as well. The world of small EV cars is quickly transitioning to include performance-based trucks.
This evolution may have gained more traction on social media with Tesla’s Cybertruck. But the Rivian R1T pickup is here to compete, and there’s a sign the automaker plans to do at least one thing better than every other competitor.
Rivian is the new EV kid on the block
Rivian Automotive was founded back in 2009 and has since been on a mission to develop automotive technology and now, electric vehicles. With research and production facilities now dotting the country, it’s proving to be the new electric vehicle kid on the block, with serious research and development chops. In 2018, the EV tech innovator introduced the R1T truck and the seven-passenger SUV, the R1S. Rivian continues to innovate in exploring off-road vehicles and electric vehicle battery technology in general.
The competitive edge the Rivian truck may have over others
A few months ago, Rivian Automotive filed for a new technology patent. The title of this patent request was “Configurable Battery Pack for Fast Charge.” This innovation will translate to 800V charging on a battery pack with a 400V capability. It can also mean the vehicle will sustain a battery module fault, without actually disconnecting the load. If the patent is an accurate indication that Rivian is about to bring this tech to market, it would be a game-changer in charging times and EV price tags overall.
Why charging efficiency matters
One of the most pivotal design features in today’s gas-powered vehicles is fuel efficiency. In the EV market, battery charging capability carries the same weight. Any automaker able to make competitive headway in battery tech, battery life, and charging times will come out ahead. Just in comparison, the Porsche Taycan charges at tops, 270 kW. The Tesla Model 3 charges 250 kW. Rivian is announcing its vehicles will top around 300 kW. To translate these points into true-to-life driving ranges, the Rivian R1T will drive 400 miles with a 180 kWh battery pack. Building a better battery, with a quicker charge, will be the competitive strategy that wins this EV race.
Putting the Tesla Cybertruck on notice
Elon Musk certainly revolutionized the EV market. But in true American industry fashion, competition is coming. Rivian Automotive is gaining ground in research, and with this latest patent request, on the tech used in production. Rivian founder and CEO, Robert Scaringe (best known as R.J.) says, “We spent a lot of time understanding the risks.” He has studied the industry and the mistakes made in EV introduction. Scaringe now has his eye on Tesla and has secured more than $2.85 billion in additional funding from the likes of Amazon and Cox Automotive to bring his vision to life. With the money and this new potential patent for battery design, Rivian’s R1T is on point to surpass the Cybertruck.
In 2018, 5.1 million electric cars were reportedly sold globally. Experts are predicting that by 2025, more than 98 million EVs will be on the road. Those numbers may surge even further if Rivian’s patent is any indication of the revolutionary battery design yet to come. The company hasn’t directly commented on the status or implication of the recent patent. So, it may be hard to predict what to expect in the coming years from Rivian or Tesla. For now, it seems Rivian is at least primed to be better than the competition in terms of battery technology and charging.
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