The Tesla Cybertruck hasn’t had a great development cycle, with at least two separate delays pushing the truck’s launch window back from Fall 2021 to sometime in early 2023. However, there’s some good news to be shared: Development on the truck should hopefully be finished before the end of the year.
The news was confirmed by Tesla CEO Elon Musk during the automaker’s recent Q4 and Full Year Earnings Conference Call. While it doesn’t mean the Cybertruck will launch this year, completing development does pave the way for mass production to begin.
Musk was vague in his statement, likely to avoid having to delay the Cybertruck any more than it already has been. “We want to complete the development of the Cybertruck this year”, Musk said, “and be ready for production next year”.
Emphasis is on the fact Musk said Tesla wants to complete development this year, not that it will. Musk may be known for grand promises, especially where autonomous driving is concerned, but that doesn’t appear to be the case here.
Supply chain issues have already been blamed for the Cybertruck’s existing delays. As Musk put it, launching a new car requires a lot of resources — resources the company needs to boost its own production capabilities. During the call Musk also explained that Tesla won’t be able to succeed if it keeps focusing on future products, and neglecting the ones it already has.
Which makes sense. Tesla is already having problems meeting demand for the four cars it has on the roads. Currently the Model Y, complete with the standard 19-inch wheels, has a delivery estimate of January 2023. Meanwhile, anyone hoping to buy the standard Model X is going to have to wait until January or May 2023.
While it’s possible to shorten the wait time by buying more expensive options, like larger wheels or the Full Self Driving add-on, both cars show just how important it is for Tesla to boost its production capacity. Especially with all the increased competition from other automakers, and the fact gas prices are through the roof.
It just means the Cybertruck is the latest victim to the longstanding Tesla delay problem - alongside the 2nd generation Tesla Roadster and the $25K Tesla hatchback.
The Cybertruck is the most unique of the trio, though. While electric trucks are starting to hit the road, the Cybertruck has a very unique, angular design that helps it stand out. Like something out of a '90s Cyberpunk video game, which may be how Tesla was inspired to come up with the name.
The shape stems from the truck's steel exoskeleton frame, which promises to be one of the strongest vehicle frames a civilian can buy. At launch Elon Musk showcased this by having the door beaten with a sledgehammer, and promising it can withstand a shot from a 9mm handgun. Various models of the truck are also set to come with up to 500 miles of range, up to 14,000lbs of towing capacity, and a 0-60 time of 2.9 seconds. That's impressive for any car, let alone a giant steel truck.
Pricing was supposed to begin at $39,000, though since the first delay tesla has removed all that information from its website. So we can't say for certain whether inflation and supply chain issues will affect the final price until closer to launch — whenever that may be.
If it's any consolation for would-be Cybertruck owners, Elon Musk has been incredibly enthusiastic about the truck ever since it was announced. The truck is going to happen at some point, but right now Tesla has bigger things to worry about.
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