Elon Musk recently took center stage in Austin, Texas, to hand over keys to the inaugural 12 owners of Tesla’s long-awaited Cybertruck, marking the culmination of a four-year journey rife with delays. However, the celebratory event took an unexpected turn when Tesla swiftly increased the Cybertruck’s price on its website, raising eyebrows among enthusiasts.
Amidst the excitement, Musk, known for his candid demeanor, failed to mention a significant detail: the Cybertruck’s price nearly doubled from $39,999 to $60,990, a revelation made on Tesla’s website immediately after the live stream concluded. The event itself showcased Musk’s enthusiasm as he drove the steel-plated electric behemoth onto the stage, emphasizing its uniqueness and declaring, ‘Finally, the future will look like the future.’
Musk engaged with the crowd, showcasing the vehicle’s durability by recreating a 2019 test with Franz von Holshausen, Tesla’s design chief, using a baseball to demonstrate the strength of the ‘armored glass.’ The presentation included videos of the Cybertruck outperforming a Porsche 911, towing another Porsche on a trailer, and surpassing a Ford Super Duty pickup in towing capacity.
Despite the upbeat atmosphere, the unanticipated price increase raised questions about transparency. The base price of $60,990 is not the only adjustment; the all-wheel drive now costs $79,990, and the high-end Cyberbeast model is priced at $99,990. The rear-wheel drive option is set to be ‘available’ in 2025, while the all-wheel drive and Cyberbeast models are expected to launch in 2024.
With over two million people on the waitlist, secured with a $100 down payment, Tesla’s production challenges are evident. Musk projects an annual production of around 250,000 Cybertrucks by 2025 but acknowledges the significant obstacles faced in achieving volume production due to the vehicle’s novel technology and design.
Critics highlight the Cybertruck’s unconventional design as a potential hurdle, with some suggesting it may have a narrower appeal than traditional pickups like the Dodge Ram and Ford F series. Musk, who once floated the idea of creating a more conventional-looking truck if the Cybertruck faced backlash, remains determined to navigate the challenges.
The Cybertruck’s unveiling brought moments of excitement, unexpected price hikes, and renewed discussions about its unconventional design and production challenges.
As Tesla strives to meet demand and overcome obstacles, the Cybertruck’s journey continues to captivate both enthusiasts and skeptics alike.