Pickup beds are designed to carry all sorts of things, but now you can add miles to the list.
Startup electric automaker Rivian has received a patent for a removable battery pack that can slip into the bed of its R1T pickup like a toolbox.
The patent, uncovered by The Drive, says the auxiliary unit could weigh hundreds of pounds, which could provide a lot of extra range for trips into the great outdoors.
The R1T will be able to cover a lot of ground without it. The 4×4 truck is launching next year with a battery pack good for 300 miles per charge and will be available with a 400-mile version by 2022.
That’s about the same time Ford will have its first electric F-150 on sale, and the blue oval brand has a similar idea to extend its range … that involves burning fuel.
Ford submitted a patent application before Rivian’s that describes a device that’s similarly shaped, but has a small internal combustion engine generator and fuel tank inside of it that can be quickly refilled on the road.
Neither automaker has announced plans to put their invention into production, but Rivian CEO RJ Scaringe previously told All Things EV that the company had some interesting ideas to deal with range anxiety that included a “digital jerry can.”