Ford F-150 Lighting VS Rivian R1T

F150 Lightning vs Rivian R1t

Two of the first electric trucks that have come to market are the Ford F-150 Lightning and the Rivian R1T. In this article we will compare the Ford F-150 VS Rivian R1T and help you decide which one is best for you.

Update 7/17/2023 — Ford has lowered the price of the F-150 Lightning by as much as 10K according to Reuters This article has been updated to reflect the new pricing.

Both vehicles have strengths/weaknesses and target audiences but from a technical perspective the Rivian R1T wins hands down. While Rivian starts at a much higher base price. If you compare the R1T Performance Max battery to the Platinum F-150 it beats it on every count at only 2K more. The Rivian has longer range, higher towing capacity, quicker acceleration, more horsepower, charges faster and has slightly more storage.

General Overview

The Rivian R1T Adventure Model starts at 73K and can be upgraded with both better drive train options and bigger batteries. The Ford F-150 Lightning starts at 60K for the Pro model and has 3 higher trim packages XLT, Lariat and the Platinum.

Ford F-150 Lightning Interior

If you have ever ridden in an gas F-150 then you will feel at home in the F-150 Lightning. The interior is very similar to traditional gas F-150’s with the addition of the large vertical tablet in the middle console. Even with the addition of the tablet the vehicle still has all of the same buttons and controls you would expect any normal F-150 to have. Ford has not gone down the same minimalist road that Tesla has with their electric vehicles.

Compared against the Rivian it has more of a traditional and manual feel. One comparison between the two is the control of the air vents. The Ford air vents have manual hand controls where the Rivian air vents can only be adjusted in software on the middle tablet controls. The F-150 lightning has an option moon roof on high end trims and it even opens up to allow airflow to come into the cabin.

Rivian R1T Interior

Rivian R1T Interior

The interior of the Rivian appears to take a lot of design cues from Tesla and copies their minimalism interior. The CEO of Rivian R.J. Scaringe is a big fan of luxury cars and would rebuild old Porches as a kid in his spare time. There as a luxury feel in this interior and overall it has a very luxurious and minimalist design. The Rivian roof is a complete glass piece and its standard on all models.

There are also some fun unique features to the interior. The driver side door has a flashlight embedded into the door frame and under the center console there is a large bluetooth speaker that you can take out of the truck with you for camping and such. Another unique feature to Rivian is they do not include a glovebox, but there is a large center console with lots of room for storage and there are small storage bins underneath the seats.

Specs and Trims Of The Ford

Ford takes your typical automobile trim packages that improve both the performance of the vehicle and the bells and whistles. The base model is the PRO trim comes with all the base features, vinyl seats and the standard range battery.

The next step up is the XLT comes with standard range battery and can be upgraded to extended range. Comes with the light bar that extends along the entire top of the grill. Has cloth seating, extended running boards with better lighting and a 360 degree camera. This model also comes with a spare tire that is stored underneath the back of the vehicle.

The LARIAT is the third level it includes all the XTL features plus 20 inch wheels, leather trimmed heating and ventilated seats. The tailgate is powered it can be upgraded with a twin-panel moonroof as well as the extended range battery.

The top model is the PLATINUM comes with all the below features and includes 22 inch machined aluminum wheels. Heated and ventilated Nirvana leather seating. Extended range battery standard, twin panel moonroof standard and upgraded sound system.

Specs And Trims Of The Rivian

Rivian takes a more buffet style do it yourself attitude to the specs and allows you to pick and choose your features. The base Dual Wheel AWD Rivian R1T starts at $73,000 then you can upgrade the drive train to either the Performance Dual Wheel AWD for $5,000 more or the Quad Wheel AWD for $8,000. The battery can be upgraded to either the large battery pack for $6,000 more or the max battery pack for $16,000.

The base package is the Adventure package and you can upgrade the package to the All-Terrain Upgrade and get 20″ wheels, underbody protection and a matching spare tire. The spare tire is stored in a compartment underneath the floor of the bed.

Ways The Rivian Is Better

This vehicle is genuinely tougher than the Ford. The quad-wheel motors make it great for off roading with high road clearance and the upgraded undercarriage protection make it a beast for wilderness adventuring. The Rivian has a better sound system then the Ford it offers double the wattage and speakers. It also includes a subwoofer hidden in the back seat standard.

The Rivian has faster acceleration, more horsepower, more range, charges faster and has more storage space.

Ways The Ford Is Better

This vehicle has a bigger truck bed at 5.5 feet vs the 4.5 feet for the Rivian. Also the standard range battery models have about ~300 pound greater payload capacity which unfortunately seems to come from the vehicle itself having lighter/less capacitive batteries. Although for what its worth Ford claims not much range is taken off with the vehicle loaded up to the max payload capacity.

The Ford has power outlets galore. Multiple power outlets in the bed and power outlets in the Frunk as well. Even a full size power outlet in the cab of the truck. The back seats of the Ford are roomier than the Rivian both from a leg room perspective and from the width of the vehicle you are able to sit 3 full size adults comfortably in the back of the F-150 Lightning.

Unique Features Of The Rivian

The first unique feature they call the gear tunnel. A large storage compartment that runs the entire width of the vehicle and provides extra storage space for things like golf clubs and duffel bags. They also created a cool camping kitchen that is designed to fit in the gear tunnel. To learn more about the gear tunnel read our Rivian review article here.

Standard with this truck is a air compressor in the back of the truck bed. It also comes with a large hose that allows you to fill up all 4 of your tires if need be or any other pool floaty or basketball you may need to top off.

Unique Features Of The Ford

The big selling point used in advertisements for this truck is the ability to push power back into the house. During power outages you can use this truck to power your home during the outage. To do this though you will need the Ford Charge Station Pro which comes standard with the extended range battery. And you will also need The Home Integration System which costs ~ $4,000 and includes a power inverter, transfer switch, and battery to start the system, which enables two-way power flow.

Warranty Comparison

Our Take

In a lot of technical power aspects the Rivian is a better vehicle. However the both have their strengths and the were clearly both designed with different use cases in mind. One theme that Rivian likes to target for their market is adventure and this vehicle fits that bill well. If you need to pull a camper, drive up into the woods for a night or go off-roading this vehicle will be perfect for you.

The Ford on the other hand is designed with utility in mind. The interior look/feel and controls are very similar to a regular gas vehicle which allows you to jump in and go get work done with very minimal learning curve. Many of the aspects of the interior design, the plethora of power outlets and the bigger bed and payload capacity were designed with the express purpose of this being a work truck. If you work construction or some kind of labor like that this trunk may be the better fit for you.

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