General Question

gorillapaws's avatar

Are you interested in buying Tesla's Cybertruck?

Asked by gorillapaws (24133points) 1 week ago

Tesla just had an event last night unveiling their Cybertruck. It’s safe to say the design is very unique and isn’t going to appeal to everyone. The specs and price (starts at $40k) actually do make this a compelling option for some truck drivers when compared to other trucks on the market. The fact that you can hit it with a sledgehammer without denting it, and that it has some impressive stats such as a max range of over 500 miles on a charge, can plug in your power tools and pneumatic tools as well, could actually make this a practical option for some.

What are your thoughts? Hideous? Revolutionary? I’m particularly interested in hearing the opinions of people who own or have owned pickups.

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47 Answers

canidmajor's avatar

Yeah, but it has a few problems if you throw a metal ball at it….

gorillapaws's avatar

@canidmajor That’s true. As Elon said “There’s room for improvement.”

elbanditoroso's avatar

I thought that the shattered window was a feature….

gondwanalon's avatar

UGLY. Looks like a cross between a Prius and a Delorean.

FYI: I love my beautiful and powerful 2017 Ford F-150.

rebbel's avatar

I won’t (not because of any other reason than that of budget; I barely can afford my bicycle).
I feel sorry for the other parties that collide with this monster of stainless steel.

gorillapaws's avatar

@rebbel So the design doesn’t turn you off? Do you like the looks or just neutral on it?

rebbel's avatar

Neutral is the word :-)
I wouldn’t mind driving it (once inside you don’t see the exterior; for all I care I would drive around in a Pacer)

ragingloli's avatar

It looks like fucking shit.
It looks like a hobby project by a first month welding apprentice.
It looks like a 3D model from a 1995 racing game on the Playstation 1.
It looks like Musk inhaled a factory hall’s worth of Cannabis smoke when he approved the design.

“unique design that will not appeal to everyone” my arse.
This monstrosity is the worst thing I have ever seen, and it needs to be destroyed.

SEKA's avatar

I’ve never wanted a truck. Now I really don’t want a cybertruck. I don’t find it hideous, but I also don’t see it as attractive. Throwing the metal ball at the window was a cute trick. The fact that the ball didn’t go through the window tells me that, if by any chance I end up in a lake, I also won’t be able to break out the window in order to get out.

A friend of mine owns a Tesla and she loves it. Nearly every time I go to her house she’s either charging it or downloading the most recent update. She says the plus for her is that she never has to take it to a dealership because there aren’t any. Something goes wrong, she calls a toll free number and they send her an update to fix it. Half my house is now computerized. I’m not sure that I’m ready for a totally computerized car/truck. What happens when we’re attacked by an enemy and the entire power grid goes down?

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

It looks too much like a folded napkin.
The design blows my nose
I have owned trucks and there’s no room in the bed from what I can see.

gondwanalon's avatar

Perhaps this diabolical disaster can be used in the next Mad Max movie. HA!

SEKA's avatar

Did I miss it or did they conveniently neglect to give a price range? Stainless steel is going to be considerably higher than the plastic/metal bodies that we’re buying now

gorillapaws's avatar

@SEKA Prices:

$39,900 = RWD, 1 motor, 250 mi range
$49,900 = AWD, 2 motor 300 mi range
$69,900 = AWD, 3 motor 500 mi range (also <2.9 second 0–60mph)

SEKA's avatar

@gorillapaws Thank you. Not as bad as I had imagined

gondwanalon's avatar

@gorillapaws What’s the miles per charge distance while carrying a half ton of cargo in the winter with the heater and windshield defrost running? Also how long does it take for a recharge? What’s the battery life?

gorillapaws's avatar

@gondwanalon Winter usually reduces batteries by about ~30%+. I have no idea about the exact impact of heavy loads on range, but I’m sure it’s a larger impact if it’s being towed behind, creating a lot of air resistance vs. going in the bed under the cover. In fairness to the cybertruck, if you towed a heavy load with a conventional ICE vehicle in the winter, you’re going to get terrible mileage too. If someone is frequently towing heavy loads in the winter for hundreds of miles, and is unable to wait for charging, I don’t think this vehicle is a good fit. For the other 99% of truck buyers, it may not be a good fit for many other reasons, but not because 500mi range is insufficient.

As far as charging times, It’s probably about 30–40 minutes for 80% charge. I’ve had my Model 3 for about 1.5 years now and it really hasn’t been an issue for me. I plug in at night and I always have plenty of charge to get me through the day and an extra 180 miles should I need it.

chyna's avatar

@seka All good reasons, especially not being able to smash the window if in water. That is one of my biggest fears.
@gorillapaws I really know nothing about chargeable cars. How do you charge it if you are on a trip? Do gas stations now have charging centers? It seems like you would be there waiting to charge for a very long time.

gondwanalon's avatar

@gorillapaws I think that Tesla’s electric truck is likely useful for my needs. If the miles per charge values are accurate. I don’t carry heavy loads. Mostly I carry my light weight canoes to nearby lakes, beaches and rivers (4 to 150 mile one way trips). It might be difficult to rig up utility racks.

LadyMarissa's avatar

@chyna I agree with you & @SEKA. I almost drowned when I was 10 & I ALWAYS think about what would happen IF I ended up in a lake, so I picked up on that right away!!! With my current car, the door won’t open while locked when you use the door handle, so I’ve purchased a little hammer made for popping out the window when you can’t get the door open.

As far as charging goes, even my sleep little town has a few charging station around the town square that are free to use. I don’t see AAA sitting with you while they wait for the car to charge. Maybe google has a map that show all the charging stations on the route you plan to take. The govt does

Another concern…how much does a replacement battery cost??? My friend drives a Prius & her replacement battery is $4K.

gorillapaws's avatar

@chyna Here’s Tesla’s Supercharger map. If i wanted to go from Richmond, VA to Cleveland, OH (~475mi trip) I would charge to 100% the night before, then drive to Hagerstown, MD and charge for 45 minutes (probably try to time this to coincide with lunch) and then drive to North Huntingdon, PA for a 40 minute charge and then on to Cleveland. It’s about a 9 hour drive in my Model 3 according to this. It would be slower than going in a gas car by about an 1h 25m, but that’s assuming the gas car didn’t stop for gas, bathroom or food breaks along the way. In a real-world road trip scenario it’s probably 30–45 minutes slower overall.

There are slower public charging options out there too if you aren’t near a supercharger. I wouldn’t use those unless I was desperate though. Replacement batteries aren’t cheap, but there are reports of them lasting over 500k miles before needing replacement. Prius batteries are very different than Tesla batteries.

RocketGuy's avatar

Looks like cheap prop from a bad 80’s sci-fi movie. Maybe the production model will look better.

stanleybmanly's avatar

It’s great. @ragingloli What SHOULD it look like to meet with your approval? It baffles me to near incredulity that Musk would allow the dense metal ball hurled at the windows without having tested the process prior to the unveiling. Can anyone explain so glaring a marketing oversight? In any event, a couple of years of shaking out the bugs, and I expect Tesla has a winner. Judging from the number of Tesla autos on the roads around here, the company’s kickin ass. There’s one other aspect to Tesla that puzzles me. Their manufacturing gigafactory is in Fremont, yet any weekday you can witness convoys of tractor pulled auto trailers loaded up with the cars on their way to obscure pier 80 in San Francisco. This puzzles the hell out of me, when Oakland is so handy as well as the logical place infrastructure wise that would allow rail transport directly from factory to ship on platforms or in containers by the dozens. All the other area automakers do exactly this.

rebbel's avatar

Can anyone explain so glaring a marketing oversight?
Marketing genius.
Only thing people talk about today, and the next days, I think, is his truck.
News outlets, on- and offline, blogs, social media; Tesla Truck is everywhere.

gondwanalon's avatar

It would look better as a 2 door (“single-cab). This would give the truck a more sporting look and a bigger bed.

Put some utility racks on that spaceship to bring it back to functional reality.

It just looks weird now. Forget about bulletproof glass.

stanleybmanly's avatar

Let it look weird. It’s a truck!

gorillapaws's avatar

@gondwanalon I agree that a 2-door version with a bigger bed that fits 4×8 plywood would make more sense. Maybe they’ll produce a model like that later if the demand is there. The crazy looks are growing on me.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

I think if you put “real truck” skin on that it would be bad ass. As-is it’s a concept designers wet dream.

Do I want one? Hell yes I do!

Demosthenes's avatar

Even if I liked the way it looked (I don’t because it’s butt fugly), the simple fact that the design is so unusual means that it will draw a lot of attention to itself and I have no desire to drive a vehicle that attracts that much attention.

LuckyGuy's avatar

It’s built like a tank. I’d have fun with it – if I were given one. I might even buy one 10–15 years down the road when it’s fully depreciated. At this point it is too much: too radical, too sharp, too flashy, too dangerous for others, too expensive, ... It is cool looking though.

I live in the north east where we have snow and cold weather. That greatly reduces battery life. Since I usually don’t drive far daily I could use an electric vehicle for short runs and reserve my Subaru Forester for longer trips.

SEKA's avatar

A friend sent this to me

gondwanalon's avatar

As is it’s a monstrosity. But I’d think about getting a single cab version.

Also add side mirrors and attachments for utility racks.
Forgetabout the knobby tires and high profile.

Response moderated
gorillapaws's avatar

@gondwanalon I’m no engineer, but I suspect a design like that with such poor aerodynamics would either have terrible range, or require a whole hell-of-a-lot more batteries to keep the same range. That would mean it would be much more expensive, slower to charge, heavier, slower, and handle worse.

gondwanalon's avatar

@gorillapaws A pickup truck is useless as a truck if can’t function as a truck. I need a large cargo bed with utility racks to carry my canoes. I’m not asking for a lot. Just carry my very light weight canoes and camping gear a couple hundred freeway miles (0ne way). If Leon’s “Cyber Truck” can’t even do the bare minimum load capacity of a pickup then his truck is not a truck. It’s a failure.

gorillapaws's avatar

@gondwanalon ” I’m not asking for a lot. Just carry my very light weight canoes and camping gear a couple hundred freeway miles”

What you’re asking is to travel a couple hundred miles with lots of extra drag from wind resistance. It’s not “asking for a lot,” but this is one of the tasks that electric vehicles struggle with. They rely on aerodynamics at highway speeds to minimize the range loss from drag.

There are plenty of other areas where the Cybertruck would outperform gas trucks, such as tasks that require lots of raw power, or towing heavy loads economically across town. I’m not saying the Cybertruck isn’t able to do what you want it to do either, just that lots of canoes creating drag at highway speeds might be a significant hit to range. It could even be that using a trailer might yield better results. I really don’t know.

gondwanalon's avatar

@gorillapaws Of course I would not expect to get ideal mileage or anything close to it while traveling with canoes on utility racks and cargo. I’m thinking that if I bought the 500 mile version of the Cyber Truck (must be single cab with 8 ff bed) and even if I got half of that then I’d be happy.

FYI: Before I added utility racks on my Ford F-150 pickup, I got 20 miles per gallon of gas. With utility racks plus canoes I average 19.6 mpg.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

I never saw too much fuel economy difference hauling canoes or bicycles around either.

gorillapaws's avatar

@gondwanalon “Fuel” efficiency is different in BEVs. Basically, electric power is much more efficient than internal combustion vehicles in terms of converting the potential energy of their “fuel” into actual motion of the vehicle. Adding additional drag to such an extremely inefficient system is only a small percent change of the overall efficiency. It’s kind of like farting in an outhouse. BEVs are much more efficient in terms of transferring the stored electrons in the batteries into forward motion of the vehicle (you don’t have the losses from heat and much less friction overall). It’s more like farting in a phone booth.

Because of this, ICE vehicles have very low efficiency when in stop-and-go traffic, at freeway speeds they do much better. The drag from wind resistance is actually a small overall percent of the wasted energy until they start to reach much higher speeds (imagine how significant the fuel economy difference would be comparing the same before/after roof racks and canoes) if you were traveling at 100 mph in both F-150 tests. I assure you at those speeds the differences in efficiency would be more apparent than the ~2% you’ve experienced with your truck.

RocketGuy's avatar

My buddy put our mt bikes on a rack on top of his 4Runner. He was not able to get to 70 mph that way. We were surprised because we were able to get to 75 mph when the bikes were inside on the trip out.

gondwanalon's avatar

@gorillapaws Wow that’s interesting. I didn’t know that electric vehicles were so sensitive to wind resistance. So this electric “truck” is a truck in name only as it can’t even do the minimum requirements of a real truck.

@RocketGuy I can put my 31 foot (100 pound) canoe plus a 22 foot canoe on top of my 6-cylinder F-150 loaded with camping gear and easily get up to 75 mph on the freeway.

gorillapaws's avatar

@gondwanalon “So this electric “truck” is a truck in name only as it can’t even do the minimum requirements of a real truck.”

I think that’s a matter of personal interpretation. If long-distance hauling of stuff with poor aerodynamics without having to recharge and using a trailer with better aero is off the table then I think there probably are better options out there. It’s certainly possible, and only the Tesla engineers could really answer your question at this point anyways. It may work just fine. The Cybertruck clearly has worse aerodynamics than Tesla’s other vehicles, so the incremental change of extra drag from some canoes is less than it would be if you were to strap it on the roof of a Model 3 as a percent of range loss.

Also, to be clear, it’s not the case that the Cybertruck couldn’t hit high speeds with canoes, it’s that it will burn up battery power pushing against that extra air resistance much faster than it otherwise would.

That said, if you want to haul ~3,500lbs of payload around in the bed, then the Cybertruck is actually cheaper than (all/nearly all?) the gas trucks on the market. If you need something with serious off-roading capabilities, then this thing may be one of the best options for the price (when comparing against other new vehicles). With the traction electric motors can generate, this ought to be amazing at plowing snow. There is a ton of utility for someone to work out of it as well with the built-in electrical and pneumatic ports, the t-slot rails for any arrangement of tiedowns, the security that the steel, “garage door” tonneau provides, etc.

It’s huge and very ugly to some (I have mixed feelings on the visuals), but the stats would mostly disagree that it doesn’t meet the minimum requirements of a “real” truck. Elon said they may make a smaller version in the long-term future. That has more appeal to me than trying to drive/park something this massive.

gondwanalon's avatar

Look at 90% of the pickup trucks on the road. They’re running around with empty tiny beds with a large extended cab. It’s like the designers were trying to merge an SUV with a pickup and the pickup aspect suffered the most. Looks ugly to me but is a big hit to most people who really don’t need a pickup. And in that regard Leon’s Cyber Truck should be a big success.

Like I said, I have minimal needs. Short single cab. Extremely low payload (300 pounds total). 8 foot bed to accommodate my very light weight canoes. Yet with my Ford F-150 6 cylinder the power is always there for much greater demands if I should ever need it in the future.

I have no need for most of the bells and whistles that the Cyber Truck offers that appeals to folks who want a truck for fun and show.

To most folks, a truck that is greatly limited by air friction is no problem.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

@gondwanalon So true, Tesla really should have just made an SUV. I beat the living hell out of my mid-size truck, that’s what it’s for. I can’t see spending a lot on one for that reason. Unless you’re hauling something huge around on a regular basis like a camper then a massive truck is more of a “personality extension.”

SEKA's avatar

Ford is challenging Tesla to a real life test of strength. Tesla has gotten what they wanted. Musk claims they’ve already received orders for 200K of that ugly monstrosity. PT Barnum was correct There’s a fool born every minute

gondwanalon's avatar

@ARE_you_kidding_me and @SEKA I’m interested in Ford’s electric F-150 that’s being developed and due to go into production in 2021. Suppose to have plenty of power. Price is an unknown and important issue. Fun to watch the development and dream of the ultimate electric pickup of the near future.

gorillapaws's avatar

@gondwanalon “I’m interested in Ford’s electric F-150…”

Ford is playing by the same physics as Tesla. Based on the geometry of their Electric Truck Prototype, it’s probably going to be packed to the gills with batteries, weigh a crazy amount and be unaffordable, or it’s going to have very limited range (especially when pulling a trailer or with a roof rack). That’s just the limitation of current batteries.

Electric Vehicles can either be:

A. Aerodynamic with respectable range 250–500mi at a small price premium over gas vehicles.

B. Not aerodynamic with respectable range and a bunch of extra batteries to compensate for the aero, which is much more expensive, heavier, requires upgraded breaks and tires, takes longer to charge, has increased stopping distances, has worse handling, etc.

C. Not aerodynamic with more limited range i.e. <200mi.

That is, unless Ford has developed some secret new battery technology that either improves energy density, the weight per kwh, or the cost in a significant way.

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