Rivian demonstrated the “tank turn” feature of its RT1 electric pickup

Rivion R1T pickup truck rotates 360 degrees in place.
Rivion R1T pickup truck rotates 360 degrees in place.

The Tesla Cybertruck is by far the most talked-about electric pickup in 2019. However, Rivian is expected to hit hard in 2020, with financial support from giants such as Amazon or Ford. And like Tesla, Rivian is preparing its share of crazy options, including the latest: Tank Turn mode!

The American startup published a video, which shows how its R1T and R1S electric vehicles can make 360 degrees tank-turns in place. Four independent electric motors are responsible for the spectacular trick. The vehicle performs a maneuver without moving either forward or backward, which creates the illusion that the wheels of the electric car do not turn.

Rivian called this unique ability of its model “Tank Turn.” Together with this function, when turning, the “tank control” (Tank Steer) works. Both concepts were previously patented by the American brand, but now it has shown it to us for the first time in operation with a real vehicle (in this case, an R1T pickup). Thanks to this system, Rivian vehicles will be able to turn on really narrow roads, which will give them outstanding maneuverability.

The Rivian R1T and R1S models will go on sale next year. They will be sold with three battery packs: one of 105 kWh, another of 135 kWh, and a last one of 180 kWh. Thanks to them, the pickup (R1T) will reach 370 km (230 miles), 480 km (298 miles), and 640 km (398 miles) of autonomy under the American homologation cycle EPA, known for its realism. The SUV (R1S) for its part will homologate with the same packs 390 km EPA, 500 km EPA, and 660 km EPA.

Both models will be seated on the platform designed by Rivian equipped with batteries and four electric motors (one for each wheel). This technology, called Quad-Motor, will allow both vehicles very high motor skills in off-road driving.

Note that if you combine the largest battery with its four electric motors, this 2,670 kg monster develops 760 hp and 1,120 Nm of torque. From standstill to 100 km/h (62 mph), the R1T accelerates in 3 seconds, and to 160 km/h (100 mph) in less than 7 seconds.