New Tesla Cybertruck production finally begins after 4-year setback
With over 1.9 million pre-orders and counting, Tesla’s Cybertruck has generated quite a stir. But will the outlandish EV pickup meet the intense hype?
Like him or loathe him, there is no debating that what Elon Musk has achieved with Tesla is highly impressive. Managing to successfully infiltrate a market dominated by legacy manufacturers with many decades of a head start and beat them at their own game — as evidenced by the Model Y becoming the first EV world’s best-selling car in Q1 of 2023 — Tesla’s achievements in sustainable mobility are something to be proud of.
However, there's been some bumps on the road to delivery: deadlines for the Cybertruck were pushed back by a further two years in 2021 (with Tesla citing parts supply issues as the main culprit) and sceptics feared that the futuristic pickup may be another overly ambitious project, destined to never see the light of day.
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They needn’t have worried though, as the assembly line at Tesla’s Giga factory in Texas has sprung into action at long last, with the first production Cybertruck rolling out of the facility on 15th of July. Tesla’s workforce certainly has a sizeable job on its hands if it is to meet targets of 375,000 ‘trucks a year. And the American manufacturer can’t afford to let those figures slip either, as even at that rate it could take around five years to meet demand — assuming all 1.9 million pre-orders make it to fruition.
So, what’s all the fuss about? Well, for those of you who weren’t watching when it premiered back in 2019, according to Tesla, the all-electric Cybertruck offers: “Better utility than a truck with more performance than a sports car.” Sounds intriguing, right?
Well, it doesn’t stop there; the Cybertruck is a bit of a superlative-fest. Its ‘exoskeleton’ is like nothing we’ve seen on a car this side of the Halo video game series. Manufactured from ultra-hard cold rolled steel and Tesla armor glass, the pickup is designed for maximum durability and protection.
It’s so strong in fact, that the US manufacturer is even claiming that it can shrug off a direct hit from a 9mm handgun – although those who witnessed the embarrassing live failure of the glass during an unveiling of the truck, may be understandably dubious of this claim. Regardless, the Cybertruck is tougher than just about anything else on the road.
A bit like Musk himself, the Cybertruck’s design is radical, unconventional, and unafraid to deviate from the norm. Few cars (with the exception of the mk1 Lotus Esprit and Reliant Robin) have attempted to pull-off such an angular, wedge-shaped design, but it certainly makes a statement and judging by the demand, it seems to resonate with a huge audience.
At 5.9m long and 2.1m wide, it’s no shrinking violet either. To put that into context, the Cybertruck is nearly a metre longer than the largest Range Rover and over 60mm wider than the now discontinued Hummer H2. Yikes, you certainly won’t want to meet a bus on a narrow country lane. Such is the Cybertruck’s heft, in some countries it may even have to be classified as a commercial vehicle.
But, if driving around in something the size of a cathedral on wheels doesn’t faze you, prices are expected to start around the £30,000 mark for the entry-level, single-motor rear wheel drive variant. This base model is said to achieve 60mph from rest in six and a half seconds and a range of 250 miles.
Add another nine thousand pounds to that figure and you get a motor on both axles and a sportscar baiting 4.5 second 0-60mph dash. While the flagship Cybertruck gains a third motor, allowing it to achieve an impressive 500 miles on a charge, as well as an insane sub three second 0-60mph time. Musk has also reportedly announced that this range topper will benefit from a 6350kg towing capacity – impressive for any car, let alone an EV. It’ll cost you though, £53,700 excluding incentives.
Still interested? Simply visit Tesla’s website and leave a £100 (fully refundable) deposit, to join the queue. Although if you live in the UK or mainland Europe, Tesla has yet to confirm if such an order would be fulfilled.
Does the world need an EV pickup truck with the performance of a Ferrari? Probably not. Does the world want such a machine? It would appear so. If you were in the market for a gargantuan EV off-roader, would the Cybertruck tempt you away from Hummer’s new EV?
All Images Courtesy of Tesla, Inc.