Rivian electric vehicles have recently been gaining traction, with some people seeing it as a major competitor against Tesla. Given Tesla’s much more widespread use and charging infrastructure presence, the compatibility of Rivian vehicles with Tesla chargers is becoming a common question.
The short answer is yes, Rivian electric vehicles can use Tesla chargers. Recently, Australia has become one of the countries included in the Non-Tesla Supercharger Pilot program to make electric vehicle charging easier in Australia, which includes Rivian models.
If you’d like to know more about the compatibility of Rivian vehicles with Tesla chargers, continue reading below.
How Do You Charge a Rivian Car?
Rivians come with the Combined Charging System (CCS2) in Australia, allowing them to charge from either CCS2 charging stations or CCS1 (J1772) charging stations. You can also charge your Rivian at home through either the portable charger that comes standard with the vehicle or a Rivian wall charger.
On the road, you can charge your Rivian car through designated Rivian Waypoints (Rivian’s own charging stations), public DC fast chargers with a J-Plug connector or connectors which are compatible with CCS2 ports, and through Rivian Adventure Networks, which are the company’s version of Tesla’s Superchargers.
Where Can You Charge a Rivian in Australia?
You can charge your Rivian at Rivian Waypoints, found across cities near places with a lot of foot traffic, such as hotels, restaurants, and shopping centres. You can also find public chargers in similar locations, with at least 2,400 across the country, varying from standard chargers to ultra-fast chargers.
Can Rivians Use Tesla Chargers?
Yes, Rivians can use Tesla chargers, depending on the charger. All CCS-compatible Rivians can use Tesla supercharging stations scattered across Australia. The number of charging stations Rivians can charge at is constantly increasing.
Near the end of January 2023, Tesla announced the expansion of their existing Non-Tesla Supercharger Pilot program to include Australia — the 16th market where non-Tesla electric vehicles can now use certain Supercharging stations. During the announcement, Rivians, which were CCS compatible, could use five supercharging stations in New South Wales (NSW), which is approximately a tenth of the entire supercharging network. These 120kW V2 chargers were found in Narooma, Tamworth, Bathurst, Hollydene, and Dubbo. Rivian owners would just need to use the Tesla app to charge their vehicles at these select supercharging stations.
The non-Tesla charging compatibility program began in November 2021 and has since covered 16 countries, including Australia. The expansion into Australia was possible and seamless because the country uses the CCS Combo 2 charging connector for fast charging, much like Europe. This is not the case for North America, which uses the CCS1 connector, requiring a ‘Magic Dock’ on select supercharging stations.
Which Chargers Work With Rivian Cars?
Rivians can work with chargers compatible with Combined Charging System (CCS) 2 — the standard for Australia. However, American Rivian models will need to use a ‘Magic Dock’ or similar adapter that allows for cross-compatibility between its CCS1 charging port to a CCS2 charging station.
It should be noted that CCS2 is backwards compatible with CCS1, meaning you can use a CCS1 cable and plug it into an electric vehicle with a CCS2 port, but not the other way around (unless you use something like a Tesla Magic Dock).
How Much Does it Cost to Charge a Rivian at a Charging Station?
The average cost to charge a Rivian at a charging station in Australia is approximately $4 AUD for 100km, although this depends on the location due to the different electricity prices. Australia’s electricity flat rate (c/kWh) ranges from as little as 21 c/kWh to as much as 36 c/kWh.
Even if two electric vehicles charge at the same charging station in the same location, there will still be price variations due to the vehicles’ battery sizes and the amount of power they draw when running.
However, if you are going to charge at a Tesla supercharging location at any of the selected stations compatible with non-Tesla vehicles, it will cost you roughly $0.79 AUD per kWh to charge your Rivian. This can be brought down to just $0.66 AUD per kWh if you opt-in for the $9.99 AUD monthly ‘membership’ to the network.
How Fast Do Rivians Charge?
There are numerous ways of charging your Rivian car, each falling into a Level 1, Level 2, or Level 3 category. Each of these levels represents the charging speed. The different ways of charging a Rivian car are as follows:
- Home Charging – As the name implies, home charging is the process of using a specialised charger to charge your Rivian at home. While not as efficient as some road chargers, it’s always more convenient.
- Level 1/ 2 Rivian Portable Charger – Every purchase of a Rivian electric vehicle comes with a portable charger. The charger has a cable that can be connected to a standard 120V household outlet — providing a slow charge of approximately 5 km worth of range every hour. This charger is also compatible with a 240V outlet, which will provide a higher level of charge at roughly 25 km worth range per hour.
- Level 2 Rivian Wall Charger – This is a much faster charger that does not come standard with Rivian car purchases. It comes with a much longer cord and will provide 40 km worth of range per hour.
- Road Charging – Road chargers are becoming increasingly common in Australia, providing electric vehicle owners with a fast and efficient way of charging their vehicles on the go, albeit at a slightly higher cost.
- Level 2 Rivian Waypoints – Rivian has charging stations near popular areas such as restaurants, parks, shopping centres, and hotels. There are plans to further expand this, with pricing and charging varying between sites.
- Level 3 Public DC Fast Chargers – You can utilise DC fast chargers with a J-Plug connector since Rivian electric vehicles are compatible with public charging networks which also use a Combined Charging System (CCS) charging port.
- Level 3 Rivian Adventure Networks – Rivian has plans to install their own fast-charging Rivian Adventure Network charging stations. These would provide up to 225 km worth of range in as fast as 20 minutes of charging.
Rivian Charging FAQs
Can You Charge a Rivian in the Rain?
Yes, much like most electric vehicles, it is possible to charge your Rivian car in the rain because the vehicle and its chargers are specifically engineered to withstand rain and other weather conditions due to their protective layers and safety features.
Do Rivians Have Bidirectional Charging?
Rivian electric vehicles currently do not have bidirectional charging. However, both of the models currently offered by Rivian, the R1T and R1S models, have been reported to eventually get bidirectional charging in the near future, including those that have already been in use before the rollout of this feature.
Can a Rivian Charge Another Car?
Rivians are currently unable to charge another car due to the absence of bidirectional charging. However, since the feature has been reported to roll out in Rivian vehicles in the near future, you can expect Rivians to be capable of Vehicle-to-Vehicle (V2V) and Vehicle-To-Home (V2H) charging eventually.
What Batteries Do Rivians Use?
Older Rivian vehicle models use Lithium-Ion (Li-On) batteries. However, the company has announced plans to upgrade its entire lineup to use Lithium Iron Phosphate (LFP) batteries. In line with this, the company has already optimised its manufacturing processes and used LFO batteries for its EDV 500 and 700 vans.
How Many Electric Car Charging Stations Are There in Australia?
According to an Electric Vehicle Council report published in October 2022, there are approximately 3,700 public charging stations in over 2,100 locations across Australia. However, the amount of stations available in Australia is quickly growing and will likely significantly increase in the next few years.
Can Any EV Use Tesla Charging Stations in Australia?
There are Tesla chargers that any EV can use to charge in Australia, but most Tesla chargers are currently only for Tesla vehicles. Since the expansion of Tesla charging stations to other EVs is fairly new in the Australian market, only a few are capable of charging non-Tesla vehicles.
However, this is expected to increase as demand and the market grow, as seen in other markets where the expansion has previously occurred.