Last night, much of the world stayed up to watch the livestream of Tesla’s all-new vehicle — the Cybertruck. Telsa owner and real-life Justin Hammer, Elon Musk, has been teasing a pickup truck for years but it’s finally been revealed and it caused quite a media stir for several reasons, chief of which being its design. The Tesla Cybertruck looks like it’s been designed by a five-year-old in Minecraft and, well, it’s not great looking.
A BMW designer recently told me that style is subjective but design isn’t; you might not like a design but that doesn’t mean it isn’t well-designed. Now, I’m no designer, so I will almost never say a car is poorly designed, even if I don’t like it, simply because I’m not in the position to do so. So I won’t say that it’s objectively a poor design, because maybe the angles and lines used actually work. I don’t know. But, subjectively, it’s a flipping mess. It’s just a random collection of triangles and trapezoids and looks like it was made for a video game in 1998.
Because Tesla is just Elon Musk’s ego with public stock, the Tesla Cybertruck is said to be bulletproof and capable of withstanding 9mm gunfire. Okay. Sure. Why, though? More than that, it’s said to have bulletproof “Tesla Armor Glass” which was tested by having someone throw a metal ball at the window. But it broke the window. Musk did point out that the ball didn’t go through and that’s true. But that’s hardly bulletproof, is it not? Hell, if the guy had a better arm, the ball would have gone through.
Of course, it’s a pre-production car, so it’s perfectly acceptable to not have fully bulletproof glass just yet. However, it’s sort of hilarious that Musk’s ego made him genuinely believe that little demonstration would work out, despite knowing the glass wasn’t production-ready (or at least we hope it isn’t, after that demo). Did he really think that was going to work?
Under its supposedly bulletproof skin is said to be some impressive specs. It will have three different powertrains, with one, two and three electric motors. It’s said to have anywhere between 250-500 miles of range, depending on spec, and enough power in the three-motor spec to get from 0-60 mph in 2.9 seconds. Musk claims the tri-motor Tesla Cybertruck can tow 14,000 pounds yet out-handle a Porsche 911.
All of that sounds very expensive and it likely will be in the end. It’s said the entry-level Tesla Cybertruck will start at $39,900 but, as with the Model 3, don’t expect to see many of those. Instead, expect to see more of the top-end tri-motor, big-battery models, which will cost over $70,000. Which is still quite a good price, to be honest. Production is said to start in 2021 but the tri-motor car won’t come until 2022.
The Tesla Cybertruck is an interesting idea, as it boasts some very impressive specs and unique ideas. But like with all Tesla vehicles, the final product is likely to fall very short of the lofty heights set by Musk. I might sound harsh on Tesla but I genuinely hope the Cybertruck ends up being every bit as good as it’s said to be. I honestly do. Why wouldn’t I? The more excellent cars on the road, the better.
However, I won’t get my hopes up. I think the Cybertruck, on paper, is an interesting idea. But I have a feeling it will end up like the “bulletproof” window in last night’s demonstration.