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Confirmed: New Rivian R2 electric SUV to hit the UK in 2027

The mid-size electric SUV sits on an all-new platform and will offer over 340 miles of range

The all-new Rivian R2 is coming to the UK and Europe in 2027, Auto Express has learned. The mid-size electric SUV will be the American EV start-up’s first car sold in Britain, where it will go head-to-head against the best-selling Tesla Model Y.

A stark contrast to the rounded, bar-of-soap shape of the Model Y, the R2 embraces the blocky yet clean and futuristic design language worn by Rivian’s R1T pick-up and R1S seven-seat SUV. Rivian Chief Design Officer Jeff Hammoud says “We designed R2 by balancing form with function, while building on our inviting and iconic design language.”

One detail carried over to the R2 is Rivian’s signature vertical ‘stadium headlight’ design, the two units connected by a very thick light bar spanning the front of the car. The rear end gets a similar full-width light bar, with a subtly recessed section below for large ‘Rivian’ lettering.

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Much like those of its big brothers, the R2’s interior should be able to handle anything you can throw at it because the materials used were chosen for their sustainability and durability, with easy to clean textiles and surfaces throughout. The cabin has been designed to be inviting, too.

Rivian says the amount of rear legroom was a priority to ensure long journeys were comfortable for everyone in the five-seat SUV. The 2,935mm wheelbase will help with that, as it’s 45mm longer than the Model Y’s. Although it’s worth noting the R2 measures 4,715mm long, whereas the Tesla stretches 4,751mm from nose-to-tail.

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Some interesting features on the R2 include a torch hidden in the driver’s door, while the ability to fully lower all four regular windows and the rear windscreen, and pop open the rear quarter windows, is supposed to create an open air experience and “invite the outside in” – much like California Mode on the Fisker Ocean, another future R2 rival.

All of the seats in the Rivian can also be folded down completely flat when you need to carry lots of cargo, or want to use the car for camping in the wilderness. Alternatively, there’s a frunk on the R2 that provides extra storage space.

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Rivian has taken onboard feedback from R1T and R1S owners who complained about the lack of a glovebox, so the R2 features two: one in the traditional location, and another below the larger central touchscreen. The new steering wheel design in the R2 also incorporates two control dials with haptic feedback.

Speaking at the reveal of the new Rivian R2, and its little brother the Rivian R3 crossover, Rivian founder and CEO RJ Scaringe said “The vehicle [R2] combines capability, performance, utility, storage and functionality in a way that we think fits really right into a huge customer need and a huge need within the market.

Rivian R2 platform, range and performance

The Rivian R2 sits on the company’s brand new platform that has been designed with performance, range and cost efficiency in mind, and will also be used to underpin a more affordable crossover called the Rivian R3.

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The platform incorporates a structural battery, which means the top of the battery also serves as the floor of the vehicle, and other components that were designed to dramatically reduce complexity.

The R2 will be offered with a choice of two battery sizes, the larger of which will provide a range of over 340 miles from a single charge, according to Rivian's website. The company also claims a 10 to 80 per cent top-up from the right rapid charger will take less than 30 minutes, but exact charging speeds have yet to be announced.

Rivian has confirmed that there will be three electric motor configurations to choose from: single-motor rear-drive, dual-motor all-wheel drive and a tri-motor setup that uses two motors to drive the rear, and one for the front wheels. Power outputs for the trio are still under wraps, but we do know the quickest models will do 0-62mph in less than 3.2 seconds – trumping the Tesla Model Y Performance and 577bhp Kia EV6 GT in a straight line.

Because the R2 is capable of receiving frequent software updates from Rivian, new features can be added after launch, and the array of 11 cameras and five radars on the car will enable the R2 to offer enhanced autonomous driving capabilities over the brand’s previous models.

Pricing for the new Rivian R2 will start from $45,000 in the US (roughly £35,000), with production slated to begin in the first half of 2026. However, first examples won’t be arriving on UK shores until sometime in 2027.

Click here for our list of the best electric SUVs on sale...

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News reporter

As our news reporter, Ellis is responsible for covering everything new and exciting in the motoring world, from quirky quadricycles to luxury MPVs. He was previously the content editor for DrivingElectric and won the Newspress Automotive Journalist Rising Star award in 2022.

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