The armored, electronic, “futuristic” Tesla Cybertruck was only announced on November 21, but CEO Elon Musk has already announced 200,000 preorders. The angular e-vehicle, set to roll off production lines in late 2021, costs as high as US$76,900.
At Cybertruck’s reveal, Musk claims the exterior shell is made from “ultra-hard 30X cold-rolled stainless steel.”
If people buy the top-spec version of the Cybertruck, it will have a range of 500 miles. Dual versions will offer 300, while singles will have 250 miles.
The e-vehicle’s tri-motor model will reach 60 mph in 2.9 seconds. Meanwhile, the dual and single motors will need 4.5 and 6.5 seconds, respectively.
The dual model proved to be the most popular at $49,000 at 42% of the preorders. The $69,900 version was at 41%, while the other $39,900 version had 17%.
Tesla: “100 years of the same”
Elon Musk started the presentation of the e-vehicle with a statement claiming every other pickup truck looks the same. He said it was hard to tell which truck models were from other American brands like Ford and GM.
Tesla wanted to try something “different.”
Musk said the car was inspired by a 1977 James Bond car. In the film, the “Lotus Espirit” transforms into a submarine that they used to escape from villains.
The truck had a 100-cubic-foot cargo area with up to 14,000 pounds of towing capacity. It takes less space than Ford’s F-150 while still achieving the same capabilities in the same dimensions.
Meanwhile, the rival company remains unfazed by its competition. A Ford representative said the company looks forward to an F-150 hybrid next year.
The CEO also showed a video of the Cybertruck beating Ford’s best-selling F-150 truck in a tug-of-war battle. He then boasted about the truck’s dynamic adaptive dampening and ride-height.
Porsche’s 911 sports car also lost against Tesla’s truck.
Tesla assigned the truck’s lead designer Franz von Holzhausen to smash a “regular” truck door to compare it with Cybertruck. While the regular one took substantial damage, the e-vehicle didn’t dent at all.
Musk claims consumers want a truck that is not “fake tough.”
The Cybertruck Effect
Holzhausen tested the “armor glass windows” by throwing a silver metal ball at them. Each pane broke under pressure.
Musk attempted to look at the embarrassing demonstration at a positive light, he joked of the ball not going through.
CEO Musk’s tweet regarding the 200,000 preorders was perceived deceptive, at most. No one purchased the Cybertruck at its full price but only inserted a $100 refundable deposit.
Reports compared their deposits with the prior 1 million interested audiences in the infamous Area 51 invasion earlier this year. Only 40 people ended up on the property.
The product’s presentation did not impress investors. Tesla’s shares dropped 3.5% overnight, signaling a lack of mass appeal.
Analysts question the e-vehicle’s impact against Ford and GM’s ~3 million annual pickup truck sales in the US. Daniel Ives, an analyst at Wedbush, said Tesla would likely produce 175,000 units in its first year of production.
Cybertruck could help expand the company’s market opportunity, he said, but catching up with the stalwarts would prove difficult.