Ford F-150 Lightning Vs Rivian R1T: Which Electric Pickup Truck is Right for You?

Justin Pritchard
by Justin Pritchard

More shoppers than ever are considering in an Electric Vehicle (EV) for their next purchase. And an increasing number of all-electric models are coming to market to fight for their hard-earned dollars.

The Ford F-150 Lightning and Rivian R1T are two of the most commonly-searched electric pickup models in 2022. The F-150 Lightning comes to market as an electrified version of the popular F-150, and the R1T representing the first dedicated all-electric pickup truck to come to market.

Both models provide shoppers an all-electric access to a functional pickup truck experience. They come complete with the latest tech, features, and engineering each automaker has to offer.

Get a Quote on a New Ford F-150 Lightning or Rivian R1T

Though towing can quickly reduce the range of both of these all-electric pickups, each packs the capability and fast-charging tech to provide drivers with range to spare for their daily commuting, errands, and weekend road trips.

Below, we’ll compare key attributes of these models side by side to help highlight their key differences and similarities The goal, to help you make a better purchase decision between the Ford F-150 Lightning vs Rivian R1T.

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Rivian R1T: Cabin Space

Ford F-150 Lightning: The five-seat F-150 lightning offers front seat occupants 40.8 inches of headroom, 43.9 inches of legroom, and 66.7 inches of shoulder room. Front hip room clocks in at 62.5 inches. Rear seat occupants get 40.4 inches of headroom, 43.6 inches of legroom, and 66 inches of shoulder room. Rear seat hip room in the F-150 lightning clocks in at 62.6 inches, slightly more than up front.

Rivian R1T: Also a five-seater, the R1T serves up 41.1 inches of front seat headroom, 41.4 inches of front seat legroom, and 60.6 inches of shoulder room. Front seat hip room rings in at 54.9 inches. The R1T’s rear seat occupants get 38.1 inches of headroom, 36.6 inches of legroom, 59 inches of shoulder room and 54.2 inches of hip room.

Bottom Line: Though the Rivian R1T is outgunned by the F-150 Lightning in most dimensions for the roomiest interior, it is the most accommodating truck of the pair for taller drivers, thanks to a slight advantage in front seat headroom. Elsewhere, it’s the F-150 Lightning that will prove the most accommodating truck for larger occupants thanks to its superior hip, shoulder and legroom measurements in both seating rows.


Ford F-150 Lightning: At this writing, the F-150 Lightning is available in two powertrain configurations. With the standard-range battery, shoppers get 452 horsepower and 775 lb.-ft of torque from its dual inboard-mounted fixed-magnet motors. Extended-range models bump horsepower from 452 to 580, while peak torque remains unchanged at 775 lb.-ft.

Rivian R1T: At this writing, the Rivian R1T offers shoppers a single powertrain configuration. With an electric motor driving each of its wheels, drivers get a combined 835 horsepower backed by 908 lb.-ft of torque. This quad-motor AWD setup will later be joined by a dual-motor AWD setup with over 600 horsepower and 600 lb.-ft of torque.

Bottom Line: The Rivian R1T’s currently-available quad-motor powertrain, as well as it’s incoming dual-motor powertrain, both boast higher horsepower than comparable F-150 Lightning powertrains. On torque, the F-150’s 775 lb.-ft torque punch is standard from both of its powertrain options.

The F-150 Lightning’s standard powertrain should boast a torque advantage over the incoming Rivian dual-motor powertrain. But the R1T largely takes the lead on power and torque, giving performance-oriented drivers access to the higher output figures of the pair in almost all of its configurations.

Range and Efficiency

Ford F-150 Lightning: The F-150 Lightning uses a lithium-ion pouch battery configuration. There’s 98 kWh of usable energy on the standard-range battery, and 131 kWh of usable energy on its extended-range battery. These figures translate into an EPA-estimated range of 230 miles for units with the standard-range battery, and 320 miles for most units with the extended-range battery.

SEE ALSO: 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Hands-On Preview: 5 Things We Love About the EV Pickup

One exception? The F-150 Lightning Platinum. Using the same extended-range battery, it’s range clocks in at a slightly-reduced 300 miles.

The EPA rates the F-150 Lightning at 78 MPGe City and 63 MPGe highway in extended-range configurations. Standard-range models are rated at 76 MPGe in the city and 61 MPGe on the highway.

Rivian R1T: The R1T’s currently-available 135 kWh lithium-ion battery is built by Samsung. Drivers can expect range of about 314 miles to a full charge. Energy consumption is rated at 74 MPGe in the city and 66 MPGe on the highway.

Bottom Line: The R1T’s sole battery option offers more range than the standard-range F-150 Lightning. But it falls just short of the Ford’s extended range battery, which gets a 6 mile advantage in EPA testing.

Remember, your results will vary depending on locale, driving habits, and climate. The Rivian is the most efficient model of the pair when it comes to highway driving, though the F-150 Lightning boasts the more energy-efficient city drive.

Cargo and Towing

Ford F-150 Lightning: The F-150 Lightning is the taller, longer, wider truck of the pair. The F-150’s bed is nearly 8 inches longer than the R1T’s. The wheelbase is nearly 10 inches longer, too.

On cargo space, the F-150 Lightning offers up a frunk, or ‘front trunk’. It allows drivers to store gear and cargo in the cavity where gas-powered F-150 models keep their engines. That’s an additional 14.1 cubic feet of cargo space, right under the hood.

Look for maximum towing capacity of 7,700 lbs with the standard-range battery, and 10,000 lbs with the extended-range battery.

Rivian R1T: The R1T is the smaller truck here, but it’s not without a few space-saving tricks up its sleeve. For instance, the gear tunnel storage system concealed within the truck’s body serves up an additional 12 cubic feet of lockable bonus storage. It’s also got a frunk to help keep cargo and gear organized and secure on the move.

Rivian says the R1T can tow up to 11,000 pounds.

Bottom Line: Though detailed cargo and interior measurements aren’t yet available for both machines, we’d expect the physically larger F-150 to offer the higher maximum cargo volume of the pair. Though, both models make clever use of specialized design around their electric powertrains to maximize storage space and flexibility.

Note that both models are offered with wide-ranging accessories to help kit the vehicle up to the specific needs and tastes of any shopper. Also, remember that towing with an electric truck can drastically reduce the available range from its battery.

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Rivian R1T: Safety

Ford F-150 Lightning: The F-150 Lightning is a rolling showcase of some of Ford’s latest safety technology. Among its safety features are systems like BlueCruise, a Level 2 advanced driving assistance function that provides hands-free driving capability on over 100,000 miles of divided highways in North America.

A camera works to make sure drivers keep their eyes on the road at all times. The F-150 Lightning also boasts a pedestrian-detecting automatic braking function, lane keeping assist, blind spot monitoring and more. Automatic lights and wipers work with an advanced-functionality 360-degree parking camera system for fully-optimized visibility in all settings.

The F-150 Lightning has not yet been crash impact tested by the IIHS or NHTSA.

Rivian R1T: Like the F-150 Lightning, the R1T will ship with an impressive suite of the latest safety tech. Rivian’s Driver+ system comes standard, and includes true hands-free driver assist functionality, automatic emergency braking, lane keeping assist, blind spot monitoring, and more.

SEE ALSO: Top 8 Hybrid and Electric Pickup Trucks Worth Waiting For

At this writing, the R1T has not been crash tested by the IIHS or NHTSA.

Bottom Line: Shoppers making the spend on a new and cutting-edge electric pickup expect little less than the market’s very latest in driver assistance and safety technology. Both of these pickups deliver it.

Over the air software updates can improve the performance and efficiency of the safety systems, as well as adding new functionalities, over time.

Tech and Features

Ford F-150 Lightning: The Lightning capitalizes on the latest array of F-150 pickup tech and features. These are largely problem-solvers for drivers based on owner feedback. Industry-first Pro Trailer Hitch Assist technology can automatically control steering, throttle and brakes for easier trailer hitching. A giant vertical central touch-display system incorporates the latest Smartphone connectivity tech. It also provides easy access to hundreds of infotainment, connectivity and climate control functions.

With plenty of exportable power, the F-150 Lightning also offers up to 11 power outlets which can tap into 9.6 kWh of juice thanks to the Pro Power Onboard system. It can power your house or cottage in the event of a power outage too.

Elsewhere, extended exterior lighting provisions, a premium Bang and Olufsen stereo system and ‘phone-as-key’ technology will help draw tech aficionados in for a closer look.

Rivian R1T: With 8 driver-selectable modes on offer, the R1T’s Drive Mode tech makes it easy for drivers to dial in the ideal mode for the situation. It optimizes vehicle systems for towing, off-road driving, rock-crawling and even off-road drifting. An all-glass roof and Meridian sound system give the cabin an open-air feel while delivering your favourite tracks with concert-level firepower.

An integrated air compressor adds useful utility to the experience. An advanced security system can use the truck’s on-board cameras to monitor the surroundings and any gear you’re leaving behind, which can be locked to a special receptacle in the truck bed via a braided cable, and monitored via built-in video surveillance.

Bottom Line: Shoppers after handy, compelling and innovative features that make off-roading, camping and driving easier can expect to be surprised and delighted. Both the Ford and the Rivian ship with an abundance of high-tech features and clever systems. They’re built to answer the demands of a shopper who expects nothing less than the latest and greatest pickups trucks have to offer.


Ford F-150 Lightning: Though the F-150 Lightning flaunts some electric-specific styling touches, including its front fascia, Ford’s first EV pickup largely amounts to a friendly and familiar face. It’s more traditional and well-known looks should appeal to many shoppers, including loyal F-150 drivers.

SEE ALSO: 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning First Drive Review: The Game Has Changed

Extended use of LED lighting elements help convey a strong after-dark identity as the Lightning rolls down the road. Plenty of window height and a large glass roof visually open up the spacious cabin even further.

Rivian R1T: The R1T’s fresh new face and unique stance are sure to turn heads as it hums down the road. Strong fascias with unique lighting elements and proud badging across the tailgate convey a strong brand identity from a glance. The R1T’s shape and poise look more athletic and emotional than the more blocky and conventional look of the F-150 Lightning.

On board, the Rivian’s cleaner-looking forward dash is more clutter-free. It makes use of a large touch-screen interface to do away with most button clutter. The strong horizontal line-work on the dashboard visually widens the cabin without adding visual complexity. It creates a perfect environment for occupants to sit back and take in the scenery.

Bottom Line: The Lightning’s interior, controls and interfaces will make long-time F-150 owners feel right at home. Its exterior styling is instantly recognizable as a specialized version of a highly familiar model. The Rivian R1T is more likely to turn heads with its more daring looks and some never-before-seen styling elements. A clean and elegant interior will attract those who prefer a driving environment that’s quieter-looking and less visually cluttered.


Ford F-150 Lightning: The F-150 Lightning starts at $46,974 in the Pro grade. It includes 2.4 kWh of exportable power, standard-range battery, and Ford CoPilot 360 driver assist technologies. Both Max Trailer Tow and Tow Technology packages can be added, as can a variety of wheels, exterior and interior accessories, and audio and entertainment upgrades. A 12-inch touch-screen is standard.

The F-150 Lightning XLT comes in from $59,474 with the standard-range battery and $80,974 with the extended-range pack. It includes enhanced exterior utility lighting, a 360-degree camera system and up to 9.6 kWh of exportable power,

The F-150 Lariat adds a wheel and grille upgrade, ventilated seating, a power tailgate, upgraded touch-screen interface and twin-panel moonroof. It comes in at $74,474 with standard-range battery and $85,974 with the extended-range battery. The F-150 Lightning Platinum opens the biding from $96,874 with all the toys. It includes the extended-range battery as standard. Just remember, this trim grade’s added weight costs drivers 20 miles of maximum range from the battery pack.

Rivian R1T: According to the Rivian website, R1T pricing opens at $73,000. The Explore package is the entry model, while the Adventure Package adds additional luxury features. They include an upgraded stereo and premium seating, the Gear Guard security system, and additional opportunities for interior styling customization.

SEE ALSO: Top 10 Electric Cars with the Longest Range

Manual and power tonneau covers can be added, as can a variety of gear packs and options to fine-tune the R1T to any taste or budget. Presently, shoppers can configure an R1T with various battery and motor options online that will be available later.

Bottom Line: Though the F-150 Lightning offers the lowest starting price on the page, the entry-level Lightning’s range can’t match that of the Rivian. Stepping up to the extended-range battery in the Lightning requires shoppers to part with no less than $80,974. That means a base-model R1T ($73,000) nearly matches the range of the Lightning’s larger battery pack at a savings of nearly $8,000.

For shoppers with more modest budgets, the F-150 Lightning’s standard-range battery helps offer a much lower starting price. Of course, at the expense of range and equipment. A wide range of options and accessories are available for both trucks. And more are on the way as the aftermarket begins to cook up further solutions.

Ford F-150 Lightning vs Rivian R1T: Conclusion

The Ford F-150 Lightning vs Rivian R1T are helping kick off an emerging market segment. It’s likely to experience tremendous growth in the coming years. With a great span of pricing and equipment levels, both the R1T and F-150 Lightning give shoppers plenty of options to devise their ideal electric pickup experience.

The F-150 offers a more basic electric truck from a much lower price point. It reduces the barriers of entry for shoppers looking for their first all-electric. The R1T currently has no lower-cost, shorter-range option. But we can expect more model variants to come online soon as production ramps up and competition intensifies.

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Justin Pritchard
Justin Pritchard

Justin Pritchard, an award-winning automotive journalist based in Sudbury, Ontario, is known for his comprehensive automotive reviews and discoveries. As a presenter, photographer, videographer, and technical writer, Justin shares his insights weekly through various Canadian television programs, print, and online publications. In 2023, Justin celebrated a significant milestone, airing the 600th episode of his TV program, AutoPilot. Currently, he contributes to, Sharp Magazine, and MoneySense Magazine. His work as a technical writer, videographer, presenter, and producer has been recognized with numerous awards, including the 2019 AJAC Video Journalism Award and the 2018 AJAC Journalist of the Year. Justin holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Hons) from Laurentian University, which he earned in 2005. His career in automotive journalism began that same year at Since then, he has written one of the largest collections of used car buyer guides on the internet. His passion for photography, nurtured from a young age, is evident in his work, capturing the scenic beauty of Northern Ontario. Living in a region with a particularly harsh winter climate has made Justin an expert on winter driving, winter tires, and extreme-weather safety. Justin’s significant achievements include: 2019 AJAC Video Journalism Award (Winner) 2019 AJAC Road Safety Journalism Award (Runner-Up) 2019 AJAC Automotive Writing (vehicle review topics) (Winner) 2019 AJAC Automotive Writing (technical topics) (Winner) 2018 AJAC Journalist of the Year You can follow Justin’s work on Instagram @mr2pritch and YouTube @JustinPritchard.

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