According to the US Patents office, Rivian has trademarked the terms ‘Tank Steer’ and ‘Tank Turn’ with a video purportedly showing it in action, but…

A video doing the rounds on the Internet purportedly shows an electric Rivian R1-T pick-up performing a ‘tank turn’ meaning the thing is basically pivoting around its own front wheels. This is big news…if it’s true.

Sure, Rivian has trademarked the terms ‘tank turn’ and ‘tank steer’ and the Internet is awash with claims the video was produced by Rivian’s ad agency but the video isn’t on any channel associated with Rivian, so…

More than that, look closely at the video and it looks a little, well, fake. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting the Rivian R1-T won’t be able to ‘turn on a dime’, indeed, Rivian itself has been quoted referencing its desire the R1-T should be able to perform a ‘tank turn’ which will be awesome if it can, and with its four electric motors it’s more likely than not.

Watch the video and you can see the ‘wheel tracks’ the vehicle makes as its driving down the hill. But as it performs the turn there’s nothing but dust. Look closely at the front wheels which are braked but still describe an arc as the thing spins the rear around…there aren’t any tracks left behind. To us it looks like clever CGI illustrating what the thing will be able to do rather than a prototype doing it.

Still, will be pretty cool if it can turn like that…

Update: Since writing this post yesterday, another video of the above has been posted claiming it is a ‘representation’ of the vehicle’s ability.

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Isaac Bober

Isaac Bober