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Ford F-150 Raptor R vs. Rivian R1T: V8 Meets EV in a Head-to-Head Off-Road Battle

America's quickest pickup trucks face off in the dirt

Ford F-150 Raptor R vs. Rivian R1T group shot
  • We pit two of our favorite trucks — the Ford F-150 Raptor R and Rivian R1T — in a head-to-head off-road battle.
  • The Raptor might have V8 force, but the Rivian has tons of tactical torque.
  • We aim to find out if gasoline or electric power is better for off-roading.

While most pickup trucks lean heavily on towing and hauling capabilities, others prioritize off-road shenanigans. That's certainly the case with the Ford F-150 Raptor, and its fun factor goes up exponentially when you upgrade to the Raptor R. Powered by a stonking supercharged 5.2-liter V8, the Raptor R has 700 horsepower and 640 lb-ft of torque. This thing can sail through dusty whoops and crawl up and over rocks with a level of grace that belies its full-size frame. But it's not the only game in town.

In fact, no longer does the mighty V8 sit at the top of the power food chain. These days we have newfangled electric powertrains, like the one found in the Rivian R1T. Our Launch Edition test truck has four electric motors that produce a whopping combined 835 horsepower and 908 lb-ft of torque. With a 135-kWh battery pack, the Rivian can also travel 314 miles before needing a recharge (it went 3 extra miles in the Edmunds EV Range Test).

When we put these two side by side on the pavement, the Rivian bested the Raptor in a 0-to-60-mph acceleration test by a few tenths of a second. That got us thinking: What if we took these two out to the desert? Is the R1T still the quickest pickup when the pavement turns to dirt?

Heading off-road gives us more questions to answer, too. When the going gets rough, can the R1T’s air suspension match the damping properties of the Raptor's Fox shocks? And what about articulation — does the body-on-frame Raptor outflex the unibody R1T? Finally, at the end of the day, which one is more efficient?

The answers might just surprise you. Watch our video to see what happens as we head to the desert to pit old-school displacement against new-school technology.

Edmunds says

As more and more electric trucks go on sale, this won't be the first time you'll see gas versus EV out in the dirt.