While the GMC Hummer EV may have the hype of the EV pickup segment, Michigan-born Rivian isn’t to be forgotten. They’re already built pre-production vehicles, have done some hardcore testing in a variety of conditions, and say they’re on track for a 2021 launch. And that timetable seems very credible, as a user on the Rivian Owners Forum happened to notice a message on the top of their website saying the online configurator for both the Rivian R1T truck and R1S SUV will launch November 16.
We haven’t yet seen Rivian’s pricing and trim level breakdown, or the design options on offer. The configurator will give us our first look at speccing a Rivian. Only, not all of us will be able to use it. The banner that the forum user grabbed a screenshot of before it was taken down said the configurator will only be available to preorder holders if or when it goes live.
Chances are, this was a goof by Rivian, who didn’t plan to announce a configurator at all. Currently, the message doesn’t appear on the website, and forum members said it was taken down shortly after the initial post. Or, on the other hand, it could be a strategic leak to build some excitement for their electric truck and SUV off the heels of the Hummer EV’s reveal.
Whenever the Rivian R1T, R1S and Hummer EV go on sale, they are going to be remarkably similar. Both brands aim to be genuinely capable electric off-roaders, making good use of their EV architecture with clever technology. Just look at Rivian’s tank turn and the Hummer’s Crabwalk. The pair will also deliver similar range, with the Rivian products hitting an estimated 400 miles beating out the Hummer’s 350+ mile range estimate, and be extremely powerful with quad motor setups. Here, the Hummer trades punches with Rivian, delivering 1,000 hp to Rivian’s 750.
Down the line, Hummer will introduce a SUV variant, making the two brands even more similar. But while the Hummer takes cues from the original with bold, in your face styling inside and out, Rivian strikes a more restrained and elegant appearance. Still, both have a trendy light bar across the front that seems to be a staple in the segment. Only time will tell how these compare in the real world, but they are set to be at the top of the premium, off-road EV truck and SUV market.