Tesla Enthusiast Test Drives Refreshed Rivian R1S, Walks Away 'Super Impressed'

The refreshed Rivian R1S is impressive 20 photos
Photo: @BLKMDL3 via X
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Earlier this month, Rivian announced a vastly improved R1 lineup, thanks to a reengineered drive train, an updated software platform, and a more refined suspension. Zack, who test-drove the 2025 Rivian R1S, confirmed the refreshed model is every bit as good as promised.
Rivian has been widely praised for its first model, the R1T pickup truck, which turned out better than most expected. A true luxury vehicle, the R1T proved well-built and, thanks to its impressive software, easy to improve over time with new features and optimizations. Until then, only Tesla offered something similar, although in a less luxurious package. However, Rivian's unique selling point wasn't luxury or software but R1T's off-road capabilities.

The entire Rivian philosophy revolves around adventure, and the R1T had the qualities to make this more than an empty promise. Unlike Tesla's Cybertruck, which struggles in difficult terrain, the R1T doesn't disappoint in the most difficult situations. To prove this, Rivian completed the famous Rubicon Trail, one of North America's most challenging off-road trails. No other production EV has ever matched this performance.

The R1S, an SUV developed on the same platform as the R1T, inherited the same qualities as the pickup truck. However, being based on a truck setup means that it can be a little rough on the edges. Despite becoming Rivian best-selling model, the R1S has been criticized for its unforgiving suspension, which struggled with deeper irregularities in the road. This is why people were curious to see whether the refreshed model has improved in this regard.

Reengineering the R1 lineup was mainly done to boost manufacturing efficiency and cut costs. However, Rivian also listened to what R1 owners wanted and delivered with the 2025 models. On paper, the new R1S and R1T should offer a lot more thanks to its improved drive train and revamped software platform. However, people wanted to see these improvements first-hand before pulling the trigger on a refreshed model. Considering the crazy incentives Rivian offered for 2023 and 2024 models, some might think the refreshed models might not be worth the wait.

However, Zack, a Tesla enthusiast who test-drove the 2025 Rivian R1S, thinks the new model is worth every penny. In a post shared on X, Zack admitted he was "super impressed" by the Gen-2 Rivian R1S. The electric SUV was already an awesome car, but Rivian made it even better for the 2025 model year. The first thing Zack noticed during the demo drive was the improved suspension. He said that it's now much smoother than before, even in lower modes. The refreshed R1S is more consistent, with a more sophisticated ride and handling.

Zack drove the LFP dual-motor model, which Rivian advertises with a 0-60 mph (97 kph) time of 4.5 seconds. However, he said that the R1S feels much snappier in practice as if it's a four-second car or faster. Being fitted with an LFP battery, this R1S should have a better charge curve than older model years, which are known to reach their thermal limits pretty fast. However, he didn't have the chance to test this during the demo drive.

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About the author: Cristian Agatie
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After his childhood dream of becoming a "tractor operator" didn't pan out, Cristian turned to journalism, first in print and later moving to online media. His top interests are electric vehicles and new energy solutions.
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