Electric Vehicles

Watch: Rivian R1T does a tank turn

Rivian showed off its truck's capability in an early morning tweet.

Photo courtesy of Rivian

The forthcoming Rivian R1T pickup truck and R1S SUV will be able to turn on a dime. This is according to a fresh tweet from Rivian on Christmas morning.

The company promises that its R1T electric truck and R1S electric SUV will be capable of doing a tank turn like the one demonstrated in the video. But, the company didn't just tweet the promise, à la Elon Musk. They showed a video of the R1T performing the maneuver.

A tank turn generally refers to a maneuver where a vehicle, like a tank, appears to spin in place. In modern tanks this is achieved by having a double differential. In an all-electric truck, it is possible to achieve this sort of maneuvering using the four motors on the wheels, which can act independently and with varying levels of torque vectoring to cause the vehicle to turn in a very tight radius.

The company has already trademarked the phrases "Tank Steer" and "Tank Turn".

Rivian, a startup with significant funding from Amazon and Cox Automotive, recently closed on another $1.3 billion in funding from funds and accounts advised by T. Rowe Price.

The startup owns a 2.6-million-square-foot former Mitsubishi assembly plant in Normal., Illinois. Rivian has said that it is about halfway done converting that plant to produce its vehicles. The company aims to create 1,000 new jobs at the plant by 2024 as it moves toward production.

Pricing for the R1T starts at $69,000. The R1S will begin at $72,500. Rivian expects the first deliveries of the R1T to begin in late 2020. The company has previously said it expects six of its models to be on sale by 2025.

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Toyota's ready to make a big announcement.

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Corporation2

Auto Shanghai has another surprise in store. Toyota will debut an electrified vehicle next week and ahead of that moment, the company has leaked teaser photos and video featuring the model on its social media channels.

One of the posts, available on Twitter and Instagram, showcases the vehicle and a series of conceptual, perhaps inspirational, related items. A light shines as a reflection in an eye. A design on paper leads to a math equation. A laser, perhaps a plasma cutter, is focused on an object. Watch the see the rest.


It passes by quickly, but in there is the shape of a crossover. We've captured the moment in a still photo below so you can take a longer look. From the body design quickly shown here, the SUV is shaped more like the Toyota Venza than the Toyota RAV4. The key here is the rear side window, which is more triangular, like the Venza, than the squared-off RAV4''s.

202 The shape of the vehicle is similar to the Toyota Venza.Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Corporation

2022 Toyota Venza EV

The face of the vehicle, shown in another social media post (this time on Instagram) and at the top of this article, shows a pared back vehicle face. The height of the vehicle confirms that it's in fact a crossover body style.

We do know that Subaru and Toyota have been working on an electric SUV for a while. While Subaru is likely calling the vehicle "Evoltis" there's some indication that Toyota may be reviving the "Celica" name for the EV. Batteries, after all, are made up of cells.

As of right now, we have to take the wait-and-see approach. One thing's for sure. We'll know more next week.

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The Hyundai Santa Cruz will debut next week but ahead of that, the design department is giving a closer look at the truck in a new video.

Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

We'll see the Hyundai Santa Cruz in full for the first time when it debuts on April 15 but ahead of time, Hyundai is setting the stage for expectations with the model. To help with that, the company released a video today featuring the truck's design manager discussing the inspiration for the utility vehicle.

The quick one-minute video is hosted by Brad Arnold, design manager at Hyundai North America. The Southern California native is the leader of the team that created the Santa Cruz, a project that began years ago. He's joined in the video by Senon Franco, the lead designer at Hyundai North America.

2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz

Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America
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As Arnold explains in the video, the design of the Santa Cruz started with a simple premise: "this is not a typical truck". Based on how Arnold describes the capabilities of the truck, that sounds true. It is meant to "thrive in dense urban environments and the open outdoors". One could argue that no full-size truck on the market today does that. Neither do most of the midsize models, though their sizing is better for that landscape.

Arnold says that the Santa Cruz is "small in size", a call that serves to remind viewers that the Santa Cruz isn't a big truck. It's more similar in size to the forthcoming Ford Maverick, a small truck that slots below the Ranger in Ford's lineup.

However, the company isn't even calling it a truck. The new model is being referred to as the Santa Cruz Sport Adventure Vehicle. This sounds a lot like how Kia is referring to the new generation of its Carnival minivan as a multi-purpose vehicle (MPV).

Arnold says that the design is meant to make the Santa Cruz not look like a truck. Rather, it's supposed to look "like a Santa Cruz". Part of that includes the front end, which looks like a carryover from the fascia of the 2022 Hyundai Tucson.

Among the other secrets Hyundai is giving away ahead of the product's reveal is that there will be more than one "efficient" powertrain, a flexible bed, "cutting-edge" connectivity, and all-wheel drive.

Watch the video for yourself below.

Design Inspiration | 2022 Santa Cruz | Hyundai www.youtube.com

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