Rivian R1S Performance Dual Motor vs. Dual Motor: What’s The Difference?

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Rivian R1S Performance Dual Motor vs. Dual Motor: What’s The Difference?

Key Points

  • The Rivian R1S Performance Dual-Motor offers 700 horsepower and 700 ft. lbs. of torque, compared to the standard Dual-Motor’s 600 horsepower and 600 ft. lbs. of torque.
  • Performance Dual-Motor accelerates from 0 to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds, while the standard Dual-Motor takes 4.5 seconds.
  • Both trims have a towing capacity of 7,700 pounds and feature torque vectoring between the front and rear axles.
  • The Performance Dual-Motor has a starting price of $89,000, while the standard Dual-Motor starts at $78,000.
  • The Performance Dual-Motor offers a larger operational range with a max battery pack, reaching closer to 400 miles per charge.

Rivian R1S is one of the most sought-after adventure SUVs. Three rows of seats can fit your whole family, and the car has legit off-road capabilities. It’s available in three trims, each with a different motor. The Quad-Motor model is a rocket but also the most expensive. If you want a blisteringly quick EV without going over the top, you’ll have to choose between Dual-Motor and Performance Dual-Motor. What exactly is the difference between these options? Find it out in our Rivian R1S Performance Dual Motor vs. Dual Motor head-to-head.

Rivian R1S Performance Dual Motor vs. Dual Motor: Side-by-Side Comparison

Performance Dual MotorDual Motor
Torque vectoringFront to rearFront to rear
Acceleration (0 to 60mph)3.5 seconds4.5 seconds
Operational range340 to 390 miles260 to 340 miles
Towing capacity7,700lbs7,700lbs

Rivian R1S Performance Dual Motor vs. Dual Motor: What’s the Difference?

R1S adventure speeding on the highway
A well-designed electric SUV, Rivian R1S has a suite of driver assistance features.

©Mike Mareen/Shutterstock.com

One of the few electric SUVs designed for adventure, the Rivian R1S was launched in 2022 and initially included only two trims. The standard Dual-Motor is the brand’s entry-level option, even though it is not exactly cheap. However, it is more affordable than the Quad-Motor. Rivian introduced the mid-range model Performance Dual-Motor in April 2023 for those who want a middle ground.

Dual-Motor and the Dual-Motor trims of Rivian R1S are surprisingly similar in performance. Considering the price difference, one might expect a completely different system and unique capabilities from the former.

In reality, the Performance Dual-Motor is the plain, standard dual motor enhanced through a software upgrade. It costs $5,000 and $11,000 more than the standard trim. Let’s see how these two options stack up against each other.


Rivian introduced the Performance Dual-Motor upgrade majorly to provide more power to the adventure-avid folks who are not yet ready to invest in the top-tier Quad-Motor. Compared to the standard Dual-Motor, the Performance brings an extra 100 ponies and 100ft. lbs. of torque, taking the SUV from 600 to 700 horsepower and 600 to 700 ft. lbs. of torque.

The extra power boost translates into higher capabilities in challenging conditions, such as steep inclines or loose terrain. However, the most striking difference is in acceleration. The increased torque and power shave off exactly one second from the zero to 60mph time, bringing it down to 3.5 seconds.

That said, no actual difference exists between the motor configurations. Unlike the Quad-Motor trim, both trims feature a single motor per axle, with one motor per wheel. Due to this design, these SUVs have similar torque vectoring and towing capacity.

Torque Vectoring

Torque vectoring refers to the motor’s ability to control how much power it sends to each wheel or axle. The Rivian R1S Performance Dual-Motor and the Dual-Motor distribute torque between the front and rear axle.

The rear motor features a higher gear rotation, allowing the system to distribute torque toward the rear. This results in improved performance, acceleration, and robust towing. At the same time, braking is controlled independently on each wheel.

Altogether, these features allow a seamless transition from one driving mode to another. The standard Dual-Motor and the mid-range Performance Dual-Motor feature five main driving modes. These include all-purpose mode ideal for the city, sport, conserve, off-road, and towing. Considering that Rivian is a vehicle for adventure, finding multiple sub-modes under the main off-road mode is unsurprising.

Towing Capacity

Another similarity between the Performance Dual-Motor and the Dual-Motor is the towing capacity. Both the entry-level and the mid-range vehicles can tow up to 7,700 pounds. This capacity does not match the Rivian R1T, which can tow up to 11,000 pounds. However, it is impressive for an electric vehicle.

Operational Range

Aside from performance, these two Rivian R1S trims differ in operational range. The standard Dual-Motor is offered with a standard or large battery pack. The former provides up to 260 miles of range, while the latter goes up to around 340 miles.

Performance Dual-Motor isn’t compatible with the standard battery pack, but you can get it with a large or a max pack. The large pack provides the same range seen in the standard Dual-Motor, 340 miles, while the max pack brings the operational range closer to 400 miles per charge.

The larger the battery pack, the more cash you’ll have to shell out. The large pack, for instance, adds $6,000 to the vehicle’s price. If you want maximum range, the max pack option now costs $16,000. Not all packs are available on all trims. If you opt for an all-terrain upgrade, you’ll have to equip the vehicle with a large or max battery.


A critical difference between the Rivian R1S Performance and the standard Dual-Motor is the price. The entry-level trim has a starting price of $78,000. This price includes a standard battery pack, 21-inch road tires, and no custom interior or paintwork. Add-ons and an all-terrain upgrade can bump costs to just under six figures.

The Performance Dual-Motor has a higher starting price of $89,000. With add-ons and upgrades, you can shell out over $100,000. While expensive, it is still cheaper than the Quad-Motor, starting at MRSP a $92,750.

Credit: Rivian

Rivian R1S Performance Dual Motor vs. Dual Motor: 5 Must-Known Facts

  • Rivian R1S Dual-Motor is the standard yet incredibly capable entry-level trim. Multiple driving modes make it perfect for road and off-road adventures.
  • Essentially, the Performance Dual-Motor is a software upgrade that increases the power from 600hp to 700hp. You also get more torque, but the motor’s features are identical.
  • The Performance Dual-Motor can have a slightly better operational range of up to 390 miles per charge if you select the max battery pack.
  • More power and torque increase the Performance’s acceleration, reducing the acceleration time (zero to 60mph) from 4.5 to 3.5 seconds.
  • The Adventure model has both trims, designed for roads and light-duty off-road driving. The off-road upgrade is worth it if you’re a thrill seeker.

Rivian R1S Performance Dual Motor vs. Dual Motor: Which One Is Better?

With the Performance Dual-Motor, Rivian brought performance democratization into the game. This option is superior to the Dual-Motor, although they share many features. You get more power and torque, but not as much as you would from the Quad-Motor. You can count on this trim to reach high speeds when off-roading. But the real question is, will you miss the power if you pick the 600-horsepower machine instead of the 700? Unless you’re an avid adventurer ready to tackle the great unknown, chances are you’ll do just fine with the standard Dual-Motor.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Rivian dual-motor?

Rivian is an adventure electric SUV. It comes in all-wheel drive variants only, and the dual-motor refers to the trims with front and rear motors that move the front and rear axles, respectively. This technology is different than the one found in the high-end Quad-Motor trim. In this case, the vehicle has four motors, each controlling only one wheel. The differences between these configurations become visible in torque vectoring.

How much horsepower does the Rivian R1S dual-motor have?

The Rivian R1S dual-motor has 600 horsepower as standard. Recently, the brand released an upgrade, the Performance Dual-Motor, that features 700 horsepower. In addition to more horsepower, the Performance model also bumps up the torque.

What is the 0-60 speed of the Rivian R1S?

Rivian R1S’ acceleration varies from trim to trim. The standard model goes from zero to 60 miles per hour in 4.5 seconds. The Performance Dual-Motor can reach 60 from a standstill in 3.5 seconds. Ultimately, the Quad-Motor gets to 60 miles per hour in three seconds flat.

Is Rivian R1S quiet?

The Rivian R1S is a rugged SUV designed for off-road but inherently quiet. Its electric motors are almost completely silent, allowing you to enjoy the sound of nature.

How fast does Rivian R1S charge?

Regardless of your trim, the Rivian R1S charges from 10 to 80 percent in about 20 minutes at fast charging stations. Using a 48-amp charger, you can expect to get about 25 miles of charge every hour, and it could take up to 12 hours to fully replenish the battery.

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