Video: Rivian vs. the Bear Lake, ID Boat Launch
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Video: Rivian vs. the Boat Launch

2022 Rivian R1T Launches a Boat at Bear Lake in Idaho

Having seen the video, we’re both impressed and horrified – but probably not in the ways you’d imagine! Watch this Rivian do its best.

One of the most common objections we’ve heard critics of EVs make is that you can’t run a battery-powered vehicle through water. Ignoring the fact that the US Navy has been doing exactly that for the last several decades, however, takes a certain sort of intellectual shielding that can usually only be penetrated with a “see for yourself” kind of exercise – and one new Rivian R1T owner recently found himself in a perfect position to prove that you can drive an EV through the water to the good people of Missouri.

Before we get to that, though, we’d like to share a bit of background on what you’re about to see, in the owner’s own words:


I’ve been looking forward to this for more than two years! I pre-ordered a Rivian R1T in February of 2020 and it was delivered May 2022 … oh the agony in waiting!

We frequently boat at Bear Lake in Idaho, which is known for very nice sand, Caribbean blue water and a very very gradual beach. There are only a few boat marinas at Bear Lake, so during the summer, launching a boat can require several hours of waiting in line. Also, the Bear Lake storms can be deadly too, so when there is a storm everyone wants to get off the lake at the same time within 20 minutes. This is a scenario where being able to launch and retrieve your own boat from the beach can save time, money, and keep people safe.

Normally people use highly modified vehicles or, more often, tractors to do this if they’re brave enough to try it at all. I’m guessing this is a first for a Rivain [sic], and I’d be surprised if the engineers even considered launching a boat from the a beach shore. Truly a good experience though.

Once I knew the R1T maximum water fording height was over 43 inches, I was instantly curious of whether I could launch my boat in Bear Lake Idaho.


What happens next? If you’re an engineer, you can probably guess – but, for the rest of you, you’ll want to press “play” to see what the Rivian is made of. Once you’re done with that, scroll on down to the comments section and let us know what you think of the electric truck’s performance. Enjoy!


2022 Rivian R1T at Bear Lake, Idaho Boat Launch




23 Responses

  1. Just because you can do something doesn’t mean that it’s a good idea. There was no margin of error for sinking in muddy bottom, being able to open a door, etc. Pretty cool that he was able to pull it off, but I would not risk a brand new truck like that.

    1. The sand at Bear Lake is surprisingly firm in most places, especially at the shore line. The biggest problem launching a boat there is the shallow incline, not getting stuck.

  2. A perfect example of how well evs work in just about any location. It’s amazing just how much miss information is out there..and passed on as current and accurate. As an owner of an electric hybrid in a cold climate, I’ve experienced it myself with people saying my hybrid will not work in the cold! Kudos for the video.

  3. Pretty cool that you could do this easily with an electric and not have to worry about sucking in water.

    Not sure why somebody wasn’t in the boat to start it up and driver it away versus everybody being out of the boat.

    That jet ski was being an idiot and a little closer to swimmers

  4. Yea so how far will that truck tow that boat before it needs a recharge …. When it breaks 2 hrs of range then we can be shocked and amazing by electric vehicles

    Untill then there has been battery powered tools for years …. Fast acceleration is not amazing …. Driving Range is

    1. You mention tools, have you ever heard of the concept of using the right tool for the right job? Or are you still holding out on buying a Prius because it doesn’t have a 17,000 lb. tow rating?

    2. So the rivian, not towing, has a range of 314 miles, while towing there range is 224 miles. About the same as a full size diesel or gas truck.

      1. My experience pulling a Featherlite trailer with my 1500 Silverado a few years back would concur.

      2. I tow my 17k lbs fifth wheel 450 miles with a Chevy before needing fuel. Your 250 mile estimate is waaay off.

        1. Maybe so, but it’s a question of using the right tool for the right job. If you drive that 3500 Silverado with a 5th wheel six or seven months out of the year, then it’s the right tool. If you take out your 5th wheel 1 weekend a year and drive a lifted full-sizer with an empty bed the other 51, then the tool is the guy in the drivers’ seat, you know?

  5. I was amazed at the capabilities of the Rivian when I watched the series, “The Long Way Up” and they used 2 new, untried, Rivians that had never been tested before. Rivian even had to install charging points in South America to make the trip possible. It was amazing to see that there was only one breakdown along the entire route and Rivian flew an engineer down to sort it out. The range of the vehicles was pretty impressive as well.

  6. What they are NOT saying here is, These “Trucks” only get 100 miles per charge while PULLING A LOAN. Not Thanks. We CAN and SHOULD find better ways to use what we have NOW until they find a better source of Power that lasts longer and charges Faster. OR, just go to Hydrogen. We already have the Engines. A $3000-4000 conversion and you’re back on the road and we won’t be GIVING China More Money (from rare earth minerals which members of OUR congress GAVE THEM RIGHTS TO0) That THEY use to build a Bigger Military which Threatens the WORLD ALMOST DAILY. THINK PEOPLE.

    1. Absolutely nothing you said here is right, BUT: if you find a way to convert engines to hydrogen (and not that phony BS “HHO” nonsense) for $3000-4000, I want in. LOL!!

  7. We have a tesla. Im a believer in electric cdcat and the torque, etc. we have a 2021 f150 for towing anhauling.
    The dude with the boat is a wanker.

  8. My 1 ton diesel truck will get 900-1000 miles per tank empty and 600-700 towing. If I’m super heavy I get 500 miles.

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