Just a few weeks ago, electric car company Tesla unveiled its first pickup, nicknamed the Cybertruck, and the world has been talking about nothing else since then. At the Los Angeles Auto Show, CEO Elon Musk pointed out features of the truck and even put some of them to the test as he promised the crowd that the Cybertruck will begin production in two years.
A New Design from Tesla
The Cybertruck looks nothing like any of Tesla’s existing vehicles or any vehicle on the road for that matter. The sharp edges of the stainless steel truck evoke science fiction imagery from 1980s Hollywood, not something that the world has seen on actual roads. The bed of the Cybertruck lacks 90-degree angles; instead, it slopes from roof to bumper.
Owners will be able to raise or lower the truck’s suspension for easy access to the bed. Drivers also have the option of adding a glass cover that will also function as a solar panel. This truck is more science than fiction; however, the cold-rolled steel that makes of the body of the Cybertruck is the same as that on Tesla’s SpaceX’s Starship craft.
Aside from the body, the Cybertruck is outfitted with armored glass windows that are designed to resist bullets, which Musk successfully tested at the auto show. First, Tesla’s CEO tested the body of the vehicle with a sledgehammer, but he couldn’t make a dent. Then, Musk hurled a projectile at the vehicle’s windows, which responded by denting and cracking rather than completely shattering.
The Cybertruck will be spacious enough to fit six people with under seat storage and have a hauling capacity of 6,400 kilograms or 7 tons. Tesla hasn’t forgotten about its sporty roots, however. While the Cybertruck will be rugged and capable of off-roading, it will be able to accelerate from 0 to 60 miles per hour in just 2.6 seconds.
Tesla’s First Electric Truck
Like other Tesla vehicles, the Cybertruck will be electric. Tesla promises between 250 and 500 miles on a single charge, which can be extended by 15 miles per day with the optional solar roof. And owners will be able to charge their vehicles at home as well as the free Destination Charging points that Tesla has set up.
These are just several of the features that Tesla hopes will sway buyers. The company recognizes that their first truck must make a bold statement to lure buyers, many of whom stick with the same brand of truck for the entire lives. However, the Cybertruck may sway from people who are already Tesla fans rather than diehard fans of other manufacturers.
All of this comes at a price of just under $40,000 for consumers who want the more affordable single-motor model with rear-wheel drive. However, Tesla will offer an upgraded three-motor model with all-wheel drive for $69,900. It will cost an additional $7,000 for the self-driving upgrade.
The Cybertruck might seem like a fantastic futuristic design from the past, but it will be a reality sooner rather than later. Tesla will begin production on the single-motor Cybertruck in 2021, while production for the upgraded model will start in 2022. Consumers are ready. Thus far, the company has taken 46,000 reservations, which indicates that truck lovers are ready to go electric.
Cybertruck Will Have Competition
Tesla isn’t the only company that has set its eye on electric pickups. Ford has just announced plans to invest $500 million in Rivian, an electric vehicle startup based in Detroit that has plans to produce a Cybertruck competitor beginning in 2020. At a price comparable to the upgraded Cybertruck, the Rivian vehicle offers rugged features and comparable range.
With this new competition, Tesla will have to make good on their word to deliver the Cybertruck to consumers on times, something that the company has struggled to do in the past.
The reveal of the Cybertruck follows the announcement of Tesla’s new Model Y, a car that is described as the “safest midsize-SUV in the world,” earlier this year thanks to a low center of gravity, rigid body, and crumple zones, which absorb some of the energy from potential impacts and direct it away from a vehicle’s occupants. The Model Y is Tesla’s second SUV, following the larger Model 3, and Musk promised consumers the ride of a sports car in the function of an SUV.