It’s two years overdue and about twice as expensive as originally promised, but the finished product doesn’t look any less outrageous. Tesla has finally made the first deliveries of its Cybertruck – albeit only a dozen, to customers at a special event in Texas last month.
It celebrated in a typically cheeky way with an official video showing how the Cybertruck could beat a Porsche 911 on a dragstrip… while towing an identical Porsche 911. Check out the official video above.
Even that has come with some controversy; some commentators who have analysed the film from the Sacramento Raceway are now saying the race wasn't a full quarter mile, and was measured out so that the Tesla would beat the Porsche... just. Hey, it's all in fun people.
But really, what to make of this radical new ute? Nobody seems to know, including CEO Elon Musk, who is on record as saying Tesla has “dug its own grave” with the truck and will need up to 18 months to make any money from it.
In usual fashion, Tesla is launching the high-end versions first, in the hope of attracting affluent customers and maximising profit while production ramps up.
The AWD and top Cyberbeast versions will sell for US$80k and $100k respectively (NZ$129k-$160k) from next year; the entry RWD version will be more like US$60k and won’t be launched until 2025. Musk originally quoted a price of US$40k.
Tesla has resorted to a “range extender” to get closer to its early claims about 800km Cybertruck range. But not a range extender as we know it: instead, it’s simply an extra battery pack that clips into the tray, taking up around one-third of the available loadspace. The standard AWD has the longest range at 547km, but that can be boosted to 756km with the extender; the Cyberbeast’s 515km extends to 708km.
Musk has also said on X that the pack is suitable for “very long trips or towing heavy things up mountains”.
Technical detail on the truck overall is still scarce, but that’s the Tesla way too. And that extends to availability in right-hand drive; the company has made it clear that Cybertruck won’t be a global model, but whether that means left-hand drive only is another matter.