Rivian has released a video of the towing testing for its upcoming R1T electric pickup in 118º F heat.

We are seeing a trend lately of companies planning pickup trucks showing the capacity of their trucks as the race to bring the first electric pickup to market heats up.

Yesterday, Ford released testing footage of its F-150 electric pickup prototype, and a day before that, GM unveiled footage of its Hummer EV electric pickup testing its “Crab Mode” feature.

These electric vehicles are still a year away, but automakers are working hard to validate them and bring to production.

Now Rivian, who is also trying to bring to market an electric truck on the same timeline, released a new video of its team testing the towing capacity of its R1T electric pickup truck in some insane heat:

The testing happened in Bullhead City last month when the region was reaching some insane temperatures over 110º F.

Rivian wrote about the test known as the Davis Dam Grade::

Established by the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) as the standard for determining a vehicle’s tow rating, the route begins at an elevation of 550 feet near the banks of the Colorado River in Bullhead City (about 90 miles south of Las Vegas and 70 miles downstream from the Hoover Dam), then climbs up through the Black Mountains to more than 3,500 feet in just 11.4 miles before gently tapering off near Golden Valley, Arizona.

Rivian has deisnged the R1T to have a towing capacity of 11,000 pounds and they say that the tests were done with a 30-ft trailer of that weight.

During the tests, the temperature reached 118 degrees Fahrenheit.

Sushant More, lead validation engineer/thermal systems validation at Rivian, said that truck performed well:

The R1T performed to the target, and beyond.

Abhijit Nikam, senior development engineer, added:

The Davis Dam test requires us to hit set targets, such as holding a minimum speed of 40 mph, and we surpassed those targets easily.

Rivian plans to bring the production version of the R1T electric pickup truck in June 2021.

Electrek’s Take

This is no joke.

Extreme heat like that is hard on any vehicle, but it is especially hard on an electric powertrain’s thermal management system, and the fact that they were able to tow 11,000 lbs at 40 mph in it is absolutely impressive.

It bodes well for Rivian’s thermal management system.

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