These are sad times for donut lovers, and we don’t mean the pastry treat. In December of 2019, the Rivian R1T demonstrated a “Tank Turn” that allowed the truck to spin in place, and it caught people’s attention quite spectacularly. But it seems that it’s too unpredictable at the moment to have it available as of yet.
“Tank Turn” Is Too Unpredictable
Using the quad-motor setup, Rivian was able to have half the truck’s wheels rotate forward while the wheels on the other side rotate backward, resulting in a stationary donut. However, the maneuver is unpredictable, and conditions need to be perfect for the feature to work.
According to Motor Trend, Chief Engineer Charles Sanderson stated, each wheel in the R1T and R1S can have a different amount of grip, which means they need different amounts of power to break the traction and bring about the “Tank Turn.” Without the proper amount of power, the vehicle could spin in a particular direction rather than staying stationary, posing safety issues.
In the video they released a few years ago, we can see just how fast the “Tank Turn” rotates the vehicle in a single space. Because of that, Rivian has valid concerns about drivers and passengers feeling nauseous after the ordeal. As a result, Rivian engineers are working to make the feature safer. Sanderson also stated that the entire focus of Rivian’s resources is on making sure the release of the R1T, R1S, and their electric Amazon deliver vans goes smoothly.
Production is expected to ramp up in January, with the first edition models of the all-electric R1T and R1S reaching customers as of last month. Although the “Tank Turn” is incredible, it makes sense that it wouldn’t be a primary focus point as Rivian is officially the first company to come out with an all-electric pickup truck. As a start-up company, they want to ensure the launch of their first products is as smooth as possible.