Why the Tesla Cybertruck Will Be Better Than the Rivian R1T
You have Elon Musk as the face of the company; isn’t that enough already?by Sidd Dhimaan, on
The war of electric pickup trucks is hot right now and, while there are multiple players in the segment like Fisker, Atlis, and Bollinger, all eyes are on Rivian and Tesla. The former has already announced most of the features and specs for its R1T pickup, but there’s not much we know about the Tesla pickup. We’ve yet to even see the actual truck, and despite this, there are a lot of reasons to believe that the Tesla pickup truck, called the Cybertruck for now, will be better than the R1T.
The Cybertruck Will Have A Lower Starting Price
When you compare two EV trucks, the basic criteria include range cost.
Tesla’s biggest advantage over the Rivian R1T is the starting price.
Rivian has announced that its pickup truck will be starting at $69,000, whereas Musk said the Cybertruck will start at under $50,000. Even if the Cybertruck loses out on some features when compared to the R1T – which I doubt will be the case - the price gap will make up for it.
Tesla Is The Pioneer Of The Electric Vehicles Segment
There’s no denying that Tesla is the pioneer here. The company started operating when electric cars were frowned upon. It took Tesla a long time to build its reputation, but right now, it’s unstoppable. The company has changed the way the auto scene operates, and even though there are products like the Nissan Leaf and Chevy Volt, no automaker dared to go all-in and create truly interesting cars. Musk’s company did it and are reaping the benefits today. Even big companies BMW, Audi, and Porsche are having a hard time catching up with Tesla. In fact,
Tesla has grown so much that it managed to beat the BMW 3 Series and the Audi A3 as Germany’s Midsize Car of the Year at the Golden Steering Wheel awards.
Yep, an ‘electric’ car beat the ‘combustion-engine rulers’ on their home turf. What’s to say Tesla won’t replicate this in the pickup truck segment as well? Especially after Musk has assured public and journalists that the Cybertruck will be their best product to date. Forget about Rivian, even Ford is at risk here.
The Cybertruck Boasts A Better Towing Capacity
The core essence of any pickup truck is its ability to tow and haul cargo. When Rivian announced the 11,000-pound towing capacity and 1,760-pound payload capacity, we didn’t know if it was good or not because there was no benchmark to compare it with.
But, then, Musk sprung a surprise by announcing that the Tesla pickup truck would tow up to 300,000 pounds.
We are still waiting for the payload ratings to be revealed, which we can expect on the day of the launch - November 21, 2019. With the Cybertruck offering a significantly larger towing capacity, it opens the door for it to be used as a work truck - something the R1T probably won’t be able to compete with.
Musk Says The Cybertruck Will Handle Like A Porsche
Elon Musk said that the Cybertruck will have Porsche 911-like performance specs, which means 0-60 mph in about four seconds.
This is one second slower than Rivian’s claim of three seconds to hit the same mark. But, in Tesla’s defense, how often will you do 0-60 mph sprints in your ownership?
What will play a bigger role here is that the Cybertruck's handling will also be comparable to the 911’s.
There are few cars that handle like a Porsche 911 and, If Musk’s claim is true, then Rivian’s ‘faster truck’ claim will be nullified completely.
Tesla Is Not A New Company Like Rivian
Unlike Rivian, Tesla has a history, while Rivian has absolutely zero trust or credibility in the market.
I would bet my money on a company that has a past record and enough service centers. Tesla does not hold a very good record in terms of after-sale customer service, but I’d rather take my chances with ‘poor’ after-sales support than ‘no’ after-sales support. The R1T is Rivian’s first product, and I will be scared to my bones traveling to a place that is thousands of miles away from the company’s service center. Yes, there are fewer moving parts in here when compared to a combustion engine, but whether you like it or not, it basically runs on technology. This isn’t something your ‘garage experience’ can fix. Currently, Tesla runs service centers in 25 states in the U.S and Rivian has zero.
The R1T May Not Be Able To Match The Cybertruck’s Tech Features
Tesla was one of the first automakers to have made everything ‘touch-controlled’ in its cars. Currently, the Model S comes with the biggest touchscreen on the console of a production EV, measuring a cool 17 inches.
The Cybertruck could probably have an even larger screen.
Then there are technologies like Autopilot, Smart Summon, and in the near future, full self-driving capability. Rivian is not far behind in this department as it will feature a 15.6-inch touchscreen system on the dashboard, a 12.3-inch instrument cluster, and Level 3 self-driving abilities just to name a few. You can expect Tesla to up the ante in the Cybertruck, so that Rivian will have a hard time competing against it. Can you imagine the different settings for towing controls on the touchscreen? That will be insane.
Tesla Has Billions Of Miles Of Real World Autopilot Data
Tesla has Autopilot, which in itself is an ode to the future. The company has come under scrutiny on numerous occasions for its inaccuracy, crashes, and whatnot. However, Tesla is constantly improving the technology by collecting real-world data from all the cars that are driving on Autopilot across the globe. Last year, the company revealed that it has hit one billion miles driven on Autopilot. It took Tesla four years to reach the mark. Now, an MIT researcher has predicted that the two billion-mile mark figure is also touched, although Tesla is yet to confirm the same.
Rivian, on the other hand, has not revealed any information apart from the fact that its truck will feature Level 3 autonomy.
There is no doubt that the Cybertruck will be equipped with Autopilot, too, and this is a big pro it holds over the Rivian R1T.
The Cybertruck Is The Most Talked About Pickup Truck On The Internet
The Tesla Cybertruck, while still a mystery at this time, enjoys more hype and social media fame and will have a head-start, at least in terms of exposure.
A recent report by Electrek revealed that the Tesla Cybertruck is the most talked-about truck on Twitter, even overtaking the company that has been dominating the U.S. pickup scene for over four decades, the Ford F-150.
Even the smallest of news surrounding the Tesla Cybertruck is becoming a sensation. Take thefaux military news, for instance. Last week, Musk attended the Air Force Space Pitch Day in San Francisco where he subtly mentioned that the Cybertruck could be used as a potential vehicle for the U.S. military. Soon enough, news started pouring in that the Cybertruck will be used in the military. Musk had to tweet saying that “the Air Force asked me to speak at a startup conference called “Pitch Day” & I happened to mention Cybertruck. They don’t buy APCs. It’s the Air Force.” Well, Rivian does not have this kind of fan following yet.
Tesla’s Cybertruck Will Reach Out To The World Faster Than The R1T
Even though Rivian has blessing from Ford and Amazon, it is still a “U.S. company only.” Tesla, on the other hand, is a global company.. The Cybertruck will have a much bigger reach worldwide when compared to its rival.
Tesla is also coming up with a factory in Shanghai as well, and it was speculated that the Cybertruck’s production could take place there.
However, Tesla has already received a formal permit to begin mass production of the Model 3 at the Gigafactory there. This means the Fremont facility in the U.S. will be retained for the Model X and the Cybertruck. At the recent Golden Steering Wheel awards, Musk also announced that the company’s fourth Gigafactory will be built in Berlin, Germany. In his own words, Tesla “will build batteries, powertrains, and vehicles, starting with Model Y.” The point here is that Rivian is at least a decade behind Tesla as of today and that clearly plays in favor of Tesla and its Cybertruck.
What We Know About The Rivian R1T So Far
- Rivian is marketing the R1T as an off-road, lifestyle adventure pickup, and is targeting it as a family camper.
- The R1T churns out 788 ponies that make it sprint to the 60 mph mark in three seconds flat.
- Four electric motors - one connected to each wheel - make 197 horsepower each.
- The R1T will be offered with three battery pack options: 105 kWh, 135 kWh, and 180 kWh.
- The R1T will offer up to 400 miles of range.
- 0-60 mph achieved in 4.9 seconds with the smallest battery pack and in 3.2 seconds with the largest battery pack.
- Adjustable air suspension that can raise the R1T from 7.9 inches to 14.2 inches by the press of a button
- A 15.6-inch touchscreen system on the dashboard
- 12.3-inch instrument cluster
- Level 3 autonomy
What We Know About The Tesla Cybertruck So Far
- In Musk’s language, it will be a futuristic, Blade Runner-style pickup truck
- It will be priced at under $50,000
- It will be able to tow as much as 300,000 pounds
- Dual motors - standard
- Dynamic suspension - standard
- 500 miles range on a single charge
- Porsche 911-like performance specs, which means 0-60 mph in about four seconds
- Porsche-like handling
Both companies have immensely strong products, but as of now, Tesla holds a slight advantage. While the Rivian R1T is already revealed, the Tesla Cybertruck will be revealed on November 21. The deliveries for the former will begin somewhere in late 2020, and the Cybertruck, well, it’s Tesla we’re talking about, so hard to tell. We’re still waiting for the Roadster so you never know.
How else do you think the Cybertruck will trump the R1T? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.