It is a very silly truck. (It also may not be a normal-sized pickup: Of all the photos released so far, few actually show the size of its bed.) But I also wonder, reading the commentary, how many people have seen other new trucks. Have you looked at new car designs lately? Half of them look like a Yeti cooler mated with a lamprey. Most car commercials now end with a shot of their “lineup,” which is to say, eight crossovers distinguished only by how much their grilles are yawning. In 2017, construction crews in London removed a fatberg—“a 130-ton mass of sanitary products and cooking fat”—from the city’s aging sewage system. A small amount of the fatberg was put on display in a museum, but the rest was secretly injected with human growth hormone and turned into the Infiniti QX80.
What I’m saying is, at least the Cybertruck looks different.
And while Musk has a habit of promising a lowest tier of prices that never actually arrive, the Cybertruck seems like it will be priced competitively: $39,000 to $69,000. That places it in the same approximate range as other pickup trucks, which are America’s best-selling and most profitable vehicle segment. While Tesla’s margins probably won’t be as padded by pickups as Ford and General Motors’ are, this is arguably the first time the company will compete with mainstream brands at a mainstream price. Pickup buyers are used to paying nearly $50,000 for a new truck; the Cybertruck (that is still really its name) is safely in that margin. It will also be competitively priced with the first electric pickup from Rivian, a new automaker that can count both Ford and Amazon as investors. Rivian’s first vehicle, the R1T, is due to beat the Cybertruck to market by a year, but its entry-level model starts at $69,000.