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Posted: 2018-12-06 16:01:09

Is this really the future we want?

It's the classic pickup truck ad shot, wheels spinning as it crashes through the mud. The truck is the new Rivian electric pickup. Rivian founder RJ Scaringe says in a press release, "We're launching Rivian with two vehicles that reimagine the pickup and SUV segments. I started Rivian to deliver products that the world didn't already have – to redefine expectations through the application of technology and innovation."

Rivian interior© Rivian
It won't be truck-like inside, more like a moving living room:

"Although the exterior of the vehicle is what first attracts you, the interior is where you spend the most of your time, so we really focused on creating a transformational space," said VP of Vehicle Design Jeff Hammoud. "The biggest challenge was creating an interior design that delivered a premium experience, while still being comfortable as a space that is heavily used. To do this, we looked outside the automotive industry and took inspiration from contemporary furniture, as well as hiking and outdoor gear, to drive the design."

Rivian in City© Rivian

The truck comes with 180 kWh of batteries that will push it 400 miles. It's a big truck with very big batteries. (A Tesla Model S only has 100 kWh.) On average, in the USA, generating one kWh of electricity produces 1.13 pounds of CO2. So just as big cars produce more pollution than small cars, a big electric SUV uses more electricity and produces more CO2 from power generation than a little one.

Rivian SUV© Rivian

And this is a very big truck or in this case, SUV. It weighs 2670 kg (5886 pounds) empty and 3470 kg (7650 pounds) fully loaded. That means that if the driver weighs more than 114 pounds, he or she will not be allowed to drive over the Brooklyn Bridge. Most of that weight is probably aluminum and batteries, having embodied carbon that might take years to pay off in fossil fuel savings.

Rivian's vehicles also feature a quad-motor system that delivers 147kW with precise torque control to each wheel, enabling active torque

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