A new video gives us a breakdown of how each mode operates.
The Rivian R1T is something of a new kid on the block in the mid-size truck segment and one of the first examples to fully embrace an electric powertrain. The advantage of this coupled with an intricate active suspension system means the niche manufacturer was able to create a product that can adapt to many different scenarios. To demonstrate this, the brand has put together a video showing us just how its driving modes work.
The eight modes are put to work on a series of different terrain types while the driver employs a combination of conservative and lively driving. Rivian explains that with these modes, the driver can manipulate the vehicle's ride height, suspension stiffness, accelerator response, all-wheel drive distribution, and more. The model featured in the video is its factory-standard quad-motor truck with an 835-horsepower output.
Things start with a bit of enthusiasm behind the wheel as the R1T is shown power sliding about in Sport mode. Here, the ride height is set at 10.5 inches while the dampers have been stiffened up. The stability control is operating in a reduced state to ensure that the tall truck doesn't lose composure but still has the freedom to get its rear-end sideways. The torque distribution chart also shows us that most of the power is being sent to the rear wheels.
When the R1T hits the dirt road, its Off-Road Drift mode becomes active. Here, the stability control is turned all the way off while the ride increases to the standard height of 11.9 inches. The ride maintains its stiff setting while the brake regeneration is set to high, as opposed to the standard setting in Sport mode. Using this, the electric truck can slip and slide through the course while leaving behind a thick cloud of dust, or even large patches of snow.
When cruising down a tarmac road, the R1T's All-Purpose mode is selected which maintains the standard ride height but the dampers are softened up. Brake regeneration is set back to standard while the stability control is turned on. This affords the driver a relaxed driving experience with comfort being the main focus.
The R1T is a truck first and foremost, which is why its Off-Road Auto mode is a highlight of the package. With the body set to its high setting of 13.5 inches with soft damping and full stability control, we see it effortlessly tackle unleveled and loose inclines. The torque distribution shows us an even balance between the front and rear motors while energy is regenerated by the brakes in their standard state.
The Off-Road Rock Crawl setting is the next step up from the Auto mode. Here, the high height setting and stability control are maintained but the stiff ride and high brake regeneration are opted for. Using this together with a 34-degree approach angle, the R1T can traverse tricky surfaces, such as the infamous Hell's Gate, with minimal drama.
Things get a bit more excitable in Off-Road Rally mode. The ride is lowered back down to its standard 11.9-inch setting while the ride turns stiff. With brake regeneration high and stability reduced, the R1T jovially slips and slides about the loose sandy surface while sending a stack of power to the rear axle.
The R1T's battery pack can sustain a range of 314 miles on a full charge. To get the most out of this, the truck's Conserve mode puts the ride in its lowest 9.9-inch setting with soft damping. High brake regeneration and full stability control are added to the mix while a small amount of torque is transferred to the front motors, ensuring that consumption is kept to a minimum.
The final Towing mode caters to those who aim to use the R1T as a truly all-purpose product. Here, the truck is placed in its standard ride height with a stiff setting. Full stability and high brake regeneration are switched on as well. Once the easy-to-fit Gen-Y hitch is installed to the rear bumper, the truck effortlessly pulls the large caravan with its 900 lb-ft of torque which is distributed to all four wheels evenly.
So there you have it - the R1T can do it all. Let's hope buyers actually use them as more than silent status symbols.