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Tesla Cybertruck (tesla.com)
1765 points by sahin-boydas 13 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 1928 comments

As a truck guy who has owned a lot of trucks and currently owns a 2017 Ram 2500 CTD 4x4 and a Land Rover Defender 110, I'm telling you right now: this is going to kill it. This is the suburban status item of 2022.

I want to buy this right now. This has nearly the towing capacity of my Ram and will smoke my wife's Audi on the track.

Stupid question: what’s up with trucks in urban areas? I understand the utility of a truck in rural/farm setting but never figured why folks want to lug around that pointless empty half while living in cities. Two of the folks I know who owns trucks have used empty halfs probably twice in a year when bringing home some furniture but that too could have delivered free by the store. Again, as I said, stupid question.

In some cases it seems like pure conspicuous consumption. The sheer impracticality of it is a badge of honor. This is not atypical for American consumerism.

In fact, I wonder about the Tesla truck's appeal. I feel like the oversized truck's negative ecological impact is one part of its appeal, do does an electric truck actually end up selling? Here in the South, some pickup drivers modify their exhausts to spew toxic smoke ("rolling coal") which is clearly not an option with the Tesla...

That’s so true, trucks and SUVs like the Mercedes G Wagon, the Ford Raptor (the F150’s rowdy cousin) and maybe even the Range Rover HSE are typical Veblen Goods. They do really well in urban areas specifically because they are over-engineered and are overkill for the purpose they are used for and are not afraid to show it off. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Cybertruck does well for the exact same reason.

"overkill" may be an unfortunate word choice, if you're the pedestrian who has a close encounter with one of these.

A pedestrian encounter with any vehicle is likely to have the same result.

No SUV's and trucks are wildly more dangerous to pedestrians.

The design of the vehicle has a significant impact [sorry!] on the pedestrian's chances. All those sharp edges can't be good.

Yeah but the glass breaks really easily so it should help disperse the impact.

The overall height, especially of the hood is also really important for the pedestrian's chances. if a sedan hits you, ideally you can roll over the top. if a truck or suv with enough size hits you, you go under it.

Somehow I think the mass and speed is far more significant than a pointy bumper.

Mass probably is only significant because it makes the stopping distance longer.

Mass also adds to the force of the impact

Should be safer with self-driving versus human-driven pedestrian crushers (SUVs)

Not that it's a guarantee but at least tesla's emergency breaking detects pedestrians already. We're still a couple years from release. I'd like to think the long-term solution is to just stop hitting pedestrians with cars.

TIL what a Veblen Good is. Thanks

To save others the googling

> Veblen goods are types of luxury goods for which the quantity demanded increases as the price increases, an apparent contradiction of the law of demand, resulting in an upward-sloping demand curve.

TIL what TIL means (also Veblen Good). So today I learned 2 things.

I agree with you on many pickup purchases being conspicuous consumption, but I think you're underestimating how many people would happily display conspicuous green consumption. This has all the "look at my big powerful toy" but acceptable for someone wanting to display how environmentally aware they are.

> This is not atypical for American consumerism.

Conspicuous consumption is an enormous part of consumerism absolutely everywhere. Wearing a $20,000 suit is conspicuous consumption to those who can tell that’s what you’re wearing but we don’t generally call it that because it’s only conspicuous if you’re in the know.

> Here in the South, some pickup drivers modify their exhausts to spew toxic smoke ("rolling coal") which is clearly not an option with the Tesla...

They could always shoot a hole in the battery pack to do that.

I hope someone invents a "coal"-roller add-on that emits high pressurized steam (builds it up for 5 minutes, then releases it when the engine is pressed hard). But it's got to be white vapor not black, as it will need to represent the green nature of what Tesla owners are buying into.

... and give validity to these assholes' hobby by playing along with their game?

yeah that sounds like exactly their attitude, fun but useless.

Having learnt the term 'rolling coal' just now, I would sincerely hope the morons doing this are in a minority amongst truck drivers. I find it far more likely that conspicuous consumption is to blame for the truck/SUV trend than anti-environmentalism.

Don't come to the Midwest... Rural towns are full of folks who love to mod their trucks so they can be seen/heard/smelled.

Or the intermountain west. Utah is the home of the Diesel Brothers. If you want to feel like garbage, go down that hole.

It is definitely a minority. If that is any consolation.

Same here, I went and looked it up on Wikipedia: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rolling_coal

I mean... why the hell would you do such a thing?!

I stopped reading at "... as a form of anti-environmentalism", what the actual fuck?!

And several people here, as a manner-of-fact, "oh yeah that happens in part of the country where I live". That is not normal.

Environmentalism has become a tribal trait, and of the tribe opposing them. Therefore, you become anti-environmental, as a way of showing your tribe.

You should probably avoid ever visiting the Southeastern US...

Think about conspicuous energy waste with Tesla coils. Rolling coils.

But clean green energy.

I live in a city and have used my pick-up truck for 15yrs constantly to move furniture, haul trash to the dump, and bulk material (mulch, dirt, sand, pavers, etc) for myself and friends. It's a major time and money saver. Yes, parking is a PITA and the gas is horrendous. However, with the population density, the utility need to haul materials is compounded - especially now that you have increasing #'s of DIY renovations and things like urban farms.

The thing I find interesting about this truck design is the angled body. It looks like it's designed for minimised radar cross section (RCS) signature, which is a military application benefit.

Indeed. It looks to be inspired by the RAH-66 Comanche stealth helicopter [1]. Currently operators are known to use (through Mil-COTS) the Toyota Hilux. Maybe Elon is after an influx of SOCOM/DARPA money for Tesla (increasing his association with Tony Stark in the process).


I got a speech like that from a co-worker, who has since called me to help him with my truck multiple times. Not so useless, it seems.

Your co-worker is trading carbon credits. Keep it up.

I live in a northern Midwest suburb, in a region that receives a lot of snow in the winter. I have driven older trucks my whole life, in part because of of the 4x4 capability for winter driving. I also enjoy being the guy who keeps a tow strap in the toolbox and hauls people out of ditches. Hard to do that without a heavy 4x4 vehicle.

When you have the bed, you realize there are a lot more uses for it than you might otherwise think. Other than just hauling stuff, the tailgate acts as a bench to sit on- I used to have lunch with my wife every day in the summer like this. At an outdoor event (like fireworks, outdoor concert in a park, etc.) I've lined the bed with blankets and lounged at comfortable height with 3 friends and great view of whatever is going on.

For me, the real key is to own an older truck that you don't mind dinging or using to its potential. I buy used, with cash, and I don't spend more than $15K or so. I don't understand spending $65-75K on a brand new mall-crawling status symbol that will only start being used like a truck in 15 years by a guy like me.

Although admittedly, I really like the look and presumed potential of the new Tesla truck. It's the first vehicle that I'd actually consider buying new. I wonder how well the stainless steel will hold up the salty roads- the bane of vehicles around here.

How much snow do you get there?

I live in Northern Europe and drive a Prius and have no issues in the winter. Last year we went to visit my wife's grandma, who lives in a 'village' (nearest neighbour 1km away) ~5km down a uneven dirt track which is bad enough in the summer. When we went, there was 30cm of snow on the road, but I had absolutely no issues. I was surprised by how well it handled it.

Sure if I had ended up in a ditch I would have had troubles, but you'd also have issues with a truck. (There aren't many big trees you can use to tow yourself out in this area)

I get that maybe you like trucks, but I don't think there is as much need as you make out (in the winter department - your other points are fair arguments). Modern cars (esp. 4x4) can handle pretty much any road surface, the only case you would need something bigger is for off-road where you need higher clearance.

It's not just amount of snow but terrain. A fair bit of snow on a flat surface might be fine, but even a little bit on a slope can quickly become problematic if you don't have 4x4.

I wonder how this sounds to people who live in, say, Switzerland, where it is very mountainous, snows frequently, and literally nobody drives a truck, and even the cars are not AWD.

I mean, I _know_ how it sounds because I am one of those people. But I wonder how Americans think this sounds.

European countries are much more compact, which makes public transportation much easier to justify. By contrast, the US is extremely spread out and public transportation yields much less ROI even in many urban areas.

Vehicle ownership in the US is practically a requirement because you have to drive to get anywhere. Therefor, having a versitile vehicle like a truck is more apealing.

Trucks also tend to be more durable than cars so they're more common in the used market, especially in the midwest.

...but for many, a truck is just an aesthetic/lifestyle symbol. The "country" lifestyle is generally associated with independence and work ethic - traits which are highly valued in the US. Trucks are a classic symbol of that lifestyle. That's why country songs stereotypically mention trucks.

The OP wasn't arguing for public transport, so I don't get where your comments on that came from from. I totally get what you mean about "symbols" though.

> Trucks also tend to be more durable than cars

Surely the engine, drivetrain, clutch etc are the same parts you'd find in cars? Curious about what you mean here?

I drive a normal FWD car during winter weather almost nobody will go out in. I drove it cross-country through the worst snowstorm the midwest experienced in the last 10 years where I couldn't see more than 10ft in front of me.

All that said, I would have been much safer in a truck.

> All that said, I would have been much safer in a truck.

A truck specifically, or would any ol' four-wheel driven (4x4, AWD) vehicle do?

It really depends on the depth of the snow.

I'm with you - as long as you don't have a RWD car, winter tyres on a FWD car make a huge difference, and they deal with ice and snow just fine.

Switzerland is about 41000 km^2 in area. The US has about 660,000 km^2 of fresh surface water.

The scales of the US and Switzerland are incomensorable.

Ohio has the same population density as Spain. American exceptionalism is just American ignorance of geography.

Alabama is the size of England. Using individual US states as points of reference for entire European countries is one form of the incomensorability. Columbus, Ohio is as far from San Diego, California as Barcelona is from Moscow. Except there's pretty much nothing but empty plain, mountains, and desert in between. Ohio has 10,000 km^2 of fresh water...about a quarter of Switizerland.

Recognizing the difference of scale is not a claim to exceptionalism. The US's scale makes it more like Russia than any western European country.

Unless you are suggesting that the typical American pickup truck trip is across Lake Michigan and back your comparisons of scale are irrelevant.

Inyo County, California is 1/3 the area of Switzerland. At population 18,000, it has fewer people than any Canton save Appenzell Interhoden (~16,000). Inyo County is surrounded by more Mojave. The Mojave Desert is the size of Portugal...nearly thrice that of Switzerland.

No driving in water.

Yes and nobody lives there. Are you always this obtuse? Ford is not selling 1.5 million trucks per year to the residents of Inyo county.

Sorry, I don’t seem to understand the point you are making.

You also forget that gas is super cheap in the US so buying a truck with its sub 20mpg fuel consumption is a no-brainer.

The long-term utility of this Tesla truck will be interesting to see. Even though new trucks are insanely priced right now, they do have very good longer-term value compared to cars.

I like having a truck but would never drop $75k for one. I currently own a 1999 Chevy 2500. It has 150,000 miles on it, which is essentially nothing for a truck that old. A lot of people who buy trucks expect them to last 15+ years and most of them do. Hell, as long as the frame is in good shape, you won't have any trouble finding someone who would buy the truck and drop a new engine in it, considering a crate 350 will set you back less than $3,000.

That’s exactly what gets me about Tesla. This is a truck you will probably never be able to repair yourself or at local shops (for software reasons alone) and is totally dependent on Tesla’s attention span and staying in business to hold its value.

Farmers are fed up with John Deere and their software shenanigans. I hope people like you who are actually thinking about value, don’t fall for this...

I own two Chevy 2500's, a '99 and a '00. They both have the 6 liter engine, very hot roddy. Bought them both for less than $3k used. One is 4WD and the other is 2WD. I used them to haul sheds that I manufacture and they are the first pickup that hasn't disintegrated under this abuse. My shed trailer and heaviest building weigh 7500 lbs together, and there is significant wind resistance towing buildings.

While I've never considered purchasing a new pickup, I'd sure like to have one of the cybertrucks to haul with.

My Honda Civic does just fine in the winter in Michigan. A good set of snow tires is all I need.

Yeah, FWD with snow tires is like 1000x better than AWD with "all season" tires.

AWD has a great plus for thrust, but in terms of stopping, which is where most "oh shit" stuff happens, the snow tires are what's meaningful.

(I live in New Hampshire)

It turns out that all cars have four wheel braking... Actually, unloaded pickup trucks don’t use their back brakes very effectively.

Everyone I knew in the midwest with a pickup weighted the back in the winter.

> there are a lot more uses for it than you might otherwise think

This looks like a solution in search of a problem. People are buying stuff they don't need then finding a good justification for it (from their perspective). But almost anything can be justified this way. Even driving an 18-wheeler will have advantages you never thought about but this doesn't negate the downsides. Mainly that you carry around 4000-5000lbs (over 2000Kg) of metal mainly just to move 1 or 2 people and nothing more. This is a lot of wasted fuel and a lot of space taken in the street.

Coal also has advantages but few people would dare defend it with this argument.

No wasted “fuel” for an electric car, especially if it comes from 100% solar power...

Moving a total of 2600kg with only 150kg of "useful load" (2 people) is a waste of energy.

Sun shining on your roof is also a waste of energy.

The top end model S weighs about 2300kg, so it's not really much of a difference.

That doesn't make it better. Moving around by yourself (like most drivers out there) in a 2300Km vehicle is not efficient. It's just better by comparison because at least it's an EV. But you still use a lot of (not so clean in the majority of cases) electricity to move a lot of weight just so one person gets from point A to point B.

People want one car to be the jack of all trades. Big enough for 7 people and carry a house's worth of furniture in one go while towing a boat, and travel 800Km on a charge. So it ends up being truck sized, 2500+Kg, to carry 1 person on their 5Km commute to work 99% of the time.

It's all relative. You could build something that weighed 100kg, so anything heavier is a waste of energy if we only look at ability to go from point A to point B.

But it would be a death trap to drive around other 2000kg vehicles, and it wouldn't be comfortable.

>5Km commute

Almost no one in the US has a commute that short.

99% of the people could do with a sub-compact 99% of the time as seen everywhere else in the world. Are the only 2 options you see a 100Kg dingy or a 2500Kg fat-mobile? It's like saying you can't have electric cars because how far can they go on 2 AA batteries.

If that's a death trap around the "real" vehicles, should cyclists and pedestrians expect 90% mortality rate should they ever decide to go out on the streets? Is that normal?

> Almost no one in the US has a commute that short.

It's all relative. You just multiply that (avoidable) waste.

Do you really need to drive a "tank" just to survive? https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=21609767

I'm sure more people could live with a subcompact car than currently do, but it's nowhere near 99%. I can drive a subcompact but they aren't made for tall drivers and anything more than 20 minutes or so hurts my knee.

People with families who regularly take them out aren't going to fit in a subcompact particularly if anyone is tall or there are car seats.

You could design a very lightweight car that could hold 4-5 people comfortably with 1 or 2 carseats and fit tall drivers. But no one does--it's not really an option.

You could buy and maintain multiple vehicles for different purposes, but it's expensive especially when you consider the additional insurance.

>100Kg dingy or a 2500Kg fat-mobile?

No obviously not, I'm saying that 2600kg vs 2300kg is basically irrelevant. And that when you say 2300kg is a waste of energy that statement only makes sense in the context of specific design goals.

>If that's a death trap around the "real" vehicles, should cyclists and pedestrians expect 90% mortality rate

No but motorcycles have an almost 30x higher fatality rate per mile driven than cars do, so I'd call that a death trap.

It's a prisoners dilemma. Everyone else is driving 2000kg+ cars. To make very lightweight vehicles that are safe around those huge vehicles it's very expensive. The solution is regulation, not begging individuals to drive smaller cars.

I find there's only a tenuous relationship between overall car size and space for tall drivers. e.g. a Nissan Leaf has about the same leg and head room as a Subaru Ascent.

See how fast you can go 250 miles on foot power.

Like me, you probably live in the vast majority of the Midwest that is as flat as a pancake. I would argue in that scenario 4x4 is not very important: if there's no incline, two wheel drive will work in almost any weather situation.

(sure, on strictly theoretical grounds, having 4 wheel drive, or 10 wheel drive or 1000 wheel drive, if there are no downsides, would always be preferable)

I once pulled a rather Jeep out of a ditch in my old Volvo 240 station wagon. At low speeds basically every 100+ HP vehicle is traction limited. It also did surprisingly well in the snow with a little practice and good tires.

How do you justify having much dirtier and far more carbon emissions than people who have appropriately sized vehicles? Granted, you could use it a few times for the bed, but why not just rent a truck and save the environment the other 95% of trips?

Trucks in urban settings are an exclusively American thing. Because of the chicken tax [1], a 20% import duty on trucks, foreign trucks are unprofitable in the US. This lack of competition incentivizes American auto makers to create as much domestic demand for trucks as possible.

1: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chicken_tax

Urban pickup trucks in particular are very American, but the ever increasing number of SUVs in places like central London is just as absurd, not to mention problematic[0]. I'm guessing one reason Europe favours SUVs over trucks is because the roads are generally much narrower here.

[0] https://www.theguardian.com/environment/ng-interactive/2019/...

As someone with two kids, massive storage space appeals to me very much.

Flying somewhere for vacation now costs $$$, so driving say to France, Spain or Portugal is a lot more appealing. A baby stroller already takes up half the 500L boot/trunk space of my BMW X1 and even with an annoying & noisy 400L roof box we still can't fit everything we want (I used to go backpacking for months with a 35L pack, so I'm not someone who takes the kitchen sink on vacation).

A Skoda Superb has a boot space of around 600L, one of the largest among "normal" cars. If you want more space, I guess you have to go for something that may look out of place in the city center but does have practical appeal even outside of farms.

As your example numbers here show though estates are often better for storage than crossovers. So there must be other factors behind crossover popularity.

Their being higher is a big factor I bet (less stooping and more road visibility, although the latter is less of a factor as they get more popular).

The fucking problem is now that everyone has an SUV, driving something of a normal size makes you feel like you're going to get crushed to death in an accident.

The trick is to accept your fate. I daily a Miata.

Ah, I used to have one for a while. Great fun.

Reminds me of the bumper sticker I saw on a big, jacked-up American truck, though: "If you can't stop, smile as you go under."

You usually can but than there are the moments where you can't. Like that 1.3 parking spots the SUV took (https://i.imgur.com/RGxHHkF.jpg) because...well nobody knows because it should actually fit but the driver couldn't park it in despite the x amount of cameras and assistants or maybe just didn't want to because he/she needed more space to get out of it in the end (actual reason presented to me once). Parking with one wheel on the street/bike lane is quite common too. However probably not because of the same reasons as the street should be wide enough to get out so maybe there are just not enough parking sensors in there. Or that SUV in a narrow city road-fun: driving with too much distance to the right side so everybody coming from the front has to wait for the city tank to pass them because somehow SUV drivers don't have a good feeling about how wide it really is.

Well yeah...they might be a thing that fits well in the US but they as sure as hell don't belong in Europe.


Reading this thread and seeing all of the reasons people come up with to justify their "need" of a truck is hilarious.

I live in the midwest, have to deal with snow, and with a good set of winter tires I do just fine in my 97 na.

Not as small, but my car is a Prius C. I feel dwarfed by most cars on the roads these days. I'm always needing to inch out juuuust a little further for a turn just so I can see if the road is clear for me to proceed.

I used to, until my MR2 was run off a road by a careless truck driver. I was fine but the trauma persists - the sickening sound of running into hard items at 70+ mph is hard to forget.

I weekend a tiny roadster as well.

The fact you sit higher and the extra visibility that gives on the road is indeed a huge plus. Car salesman told me "everyone's ditching estates for crossovers nowadays" and almost every brand makes one.

Conversely, a low center of gravity and the superior emergency handling that it gives a car is also a huge plus.

My wife used to own a Mercury Sable. I literally dodged a deer with it one day without rolling the vehicle. Ended up in the next lane over in less than half a second still going down the highway.

With my big pickups, I just try to center the deer on my massive grill guard so they don't dent the quarter panels.

You can’t get more American than this comment. Cultural clash at its finest.

I'm with you on this. I recently drove an BMW X5, a 350D M-Sport, and the high level of body roll was a real surprise - straight out of the showroom I turned at a set of lights and thought I was going to roll the bloody thing!

Also, realistically I don't think sitting slightly higher up gives much better visibility.

> Flying somewhere for vacation now costs $$$, so driving say to ...

What about the rest of the time though?

Would you save money by using a "normal" car for most of the year, and then renting something bigger (SUV, (mini)van) when you need the large volume? Or purchase a hitch for your car and rent a trailer when you need to haul things?

A co-worker of mine drives a Ford F-150 year-round because he owns a fishing boat that he used 5-6 weekends per year. Seems... sub-optimal.

My current car is a BMW X1, which isn't really a big car at all. But I do need more space a few times a year, usually on extended trips.

A bigger car of a non-premium brand with a small engine would probably cost about the same in taxes, insurance, consumption.

F-150 is total overkill of course.

I was recently shopping for a car with loads of space - it's actually surprising how little storage space there is in most SUVs, especially compared to larger saloons, estates and hatchbacks!

An Audi Q5, for example, is big vehicle, yet I've more space in my 3 Series GT. Very similar story with the BMW X3 and the Merc equivalent.

At some the very biggest SUVs, such as the Q7 and X5, yes, you have a decent amount of space - but it's absolutely less than you'd think for what are basically tanks.

does the math really work out? You will also have to spend quite some money on fuel and should factor in the depreciation and maitenance costs of your car to make it comparable. And flights on popular routes in Europe are pretty cheap nowadays.

Estimated cost both ways is about 600EUR, that includes fuel, tolls, a cheap hotel half way. Brussels - Bilbao is always an expensive flight for some reason. There's Ryanair airports nearby but it's a huge hassle and we'd still have to rent a car upon arrival.


Traveling with kids is complicated.

Brussels - Bilbao at the end of Dec is 1500EUR for 3x tickets. Driving there & back is around 5-600EUR, including diesel, tolls and a cheap hotel half way.

There's cheaper tickets with budget airlines but getting to some rural Ryanair airport by 6AM with a toddler and a baby, no thanks.

just checked some prizes out of curiosity for that route and found tickets starting from 400 EUR for 2 adults and two kids (unless you have to travel on the most expensive dates). Make it 600 EUR but it still does not sound like a big difference and you are not factoring in the depreciation and maintenance a car costs for a long trip like that. Financially i don't think it makes a big difference, it's probably about convenience in the end.

Four hundred EUR total, were did you find such tickets? I use Kayak, only direct flights and no Ryanair (all too much hassle with kids)

A car like this should be able to do 80K Km before needing any serious maintenance / repairs so a 2500Km round trip doesn't worry me too much. It is indeed also about convenience.

We have 2 sets of twins, age 3 and 5. Currently drive a Multipla, which has the same controversial looks and the same 3+3 seating plan. I'd like a tesla truck, but I'd really like one as an estate/station wagon. More internal space, the merrier. Bigger is better. Shorter wheelbase is better for parking in London, but I can live with it. The number of big SUVs around here is utter nonsense. Stupid cars. Big on the outside, small on the inside. Diesel guzzlers. Nothing to do with function, whatsoever. Transport for London is banning a load of them in 2021.

SUVs are the minivans of rich suburban soccer mums.

I really hate that trend as most of time people driving it have no idea what they are doing + have no need for that capacity.

They are often called housewife tanks in Germany.

"Hausfrauenpanzer", pronounced somewhat like "House-Frown-Pun-Tser". In case anyone was wondering.

As a bit of a WW2 historian/wargamer, that is the most hilarious thing I've heard in a long time... thank you from my particular context :)

Interesting. I’ve never heard that before, but I have heard them called Einkaufspanzer (shopping tanks) several times. The implication being it’s the tank you use to do your grocery shopping in.

That's brilliant.


Hilarious - my family and I joke and call the inevitable massive chevy suburbans "Mom Tanks"

Chelsea tractors

but now we're putting people in the position where if you're not driving SUV and you're in a collision with an SUV you come off worse. so your option to remain safe is to buy an SUV so that if you hit/get hit another SUV or you hit/gethit another vehicle you end up in a better position

I don’t think that’s true and it’s possible to design small cars to fare well. I had an old Saab 9-3 that was t-boned by a Chevy Avalanche at about 40 mph.

Both vehicles were totaled. My passengers had some lacerations from shattered glass. The avalanche people were taken away in an ambulance. I was fine.

Small cars can be designed quite robustly to withstand these huge trucks hitting them. Not all though.

I think the current tesla sedans do quite well with large vehicle impact testing.

It’s not so much about the design than the impression. Lots of people don’t like driving and would rather a bigger car because they feel unsafe next to those other giant cars. Nothing to do with actual danger, just perception.

I think people like excuses to drive SUVs. I had a friend who drove an SUV and talked about the safety and space needs. But the SUV had worse safety and space than many sedans, wagons, and hatchbacks. I always thought it curious about why they would cover up whatever the reason was for driving an SUV but was never able to talk about it because they got deflective and defensive.

Modern safety features certainly help, but ultimately physics is still physics.

There can also be serious problems when modern vehicles have collisions with older vehicles that don't have those safety features, for similar reasons.

Whoa, freaky. My 9-3 was rear ended by an Avalanche. Luckily no one was hurt and insurance didn't total my car somehow.

I wish it hadn’t totaled mine. It was a 2000 so before GM turned Saabs into Malibus.

The downside is that an SUV flips over without any effort. Especially with the high greenhouses and unavoidable sunroofs nowadays. I've seen SUVs flip over just from being rear-ended.

I saw a Defender flipped on its side after being t-boned by a Mercedes taxi.

Notice how one of the first marketing points of this new monstrosity is "passenger safety". Because the safety of the passengers in a vehicle the size of a truck with the performance of a sports car is really important. Given the poor standard of driver training it's going to be suicide to drive smaller car soon, let alone be on a bicycle or walking.

This is why I exclusively drive a Mac truck.

Oh dear lord, what's Apple gone and done now? Semi rigs?

It's "Mack" truck

speaking of weight

over/under 2.5t on weight of that tesla cyberwart?

Definitely over. A claimed 500mi range on the upper model with three large motors is a LOT more copper, steel, and lipo cells than the X.

> have no need for that capacity

If I'm forking out 40K+ on a car I'm going to make sure it's at least useful for 2-3 vacations per year with the kids. That currently requires about 900L of boot space (stroller, 3 big duffels, a few boxes with supplies, toys, etc)

The thing is, if you the math, owning a small car and renting a larger vehicle the 2-3 times a year you need it is vastly less expensive.

I own zero cars and rent when required. I save a fortune.

By myself I can live with my bicycle and motorbike but once kids, daycare, schools and 10Kg of groceries per week come in to your life things change.

Most grocery stores in the places I’ve lived offer online shopping. From Amazon Fresh to Carrefour. Try it, it will save you so much effort.

For sure! If your living situation allows it that’s definitely the cheapest option, at least for car budget.

Better for the environment too.

Not the case in central/eastern Europe (where most personally owned vehicles are second hand)

>people driving it have no idea what they are doing + have no need for that capacity.

Presumptuous to assume the operators of these vehicles don’t have the need for the capacity. My next door neighbor has 3 kids that fit in 3 car seats she carts them around all day not to mention their accessories and shopping and I always thought she needed a bigger vehicle. SUVs fare better in a collision with a smaller car, when it comes to protecting your kids you are better off riding in a tank.

Get a MiniVan (called a people carrier in the UK) if you need the capacity, not an SUV. Better MPG, less likely to flip over, similar or greater capacity.

And sliding doors, which are one of the best inventions ever when it comes to getting kids in and out of the car in tight spaces and garages.

SUVs fare better in a collision with a smaller car, when it comes to protecting your kids you are better off riding in a tank.

Unless the other party was driving a bigger tank in response to everyone else's tanks.

An arms race where vehicles get heavier and heavier isn't really in anyone's interests over the long run.

SUVs have a dreadful record for safety. They feel safe, because they're so big, but they really aren't more safe than smaller vehicles.

>3 kids that fit in 3 car seats

Would all fit in a compact

Car seats are massive and I’m pretty sure they’re deliberately designed so that few models will fit three to a row. They certainly don’t fit in my compact or my crossover. Putting them in my compact also requires me to drive with my chest on the steering wheel.

show me a compact that can take 3 car seats and have isofix mounts for all 3 of them.

Here's a long list, along with a list of carseats that have been tested "3 across" in those cars. A minivan or SUV would undoubtedly be easier to load kids in and out of, of course.


There isn't a single compact car on the market which fits a family of five - three children in ISO-fix seats and two adults in the front.

You need to look at the Peugeot 5008 or larger MPVs if you want that.

It's a gap in the market, I'd kill for a Model 3 sized car which was 5cm wider and had three proper seats in the back.

Source: the last three months researching and looking for the smallest car I can buy which can fit the whole family in.

Agreed, there are very few cars on the market that fit the bill. There's the Ford S-Max, Peugeot 5008, and the Audi Q7 (which is ludicrously big) - I think that's it.

It really does feel like a massive gap in the market, and I wonder why that is?

BTW, if you're still looking, and depending on the age of your kids, it might be worth looking at the MultiMac - it's basically a new back bench for your car, with 3x car seats built-in.

I have the Citroën c4 spaceturer which also does this.

The ww Turan is also a option.

Maybe because not many people have triplets? My parents had five children and never had more than one baby seat in the car at a time (they only ever bought one baby seat).

Laws have changed over time. When we got our third our oldest was 6. She was still required to be in a kid seat.

Most of those have the "third" set of mounts in the front passenger seat. Is it common to put kids in the front seat in the UK?

In the US kids who are small enough to need a car seat aren't going to be in the front (air bags aren't designed for kids)

I don't know if its a legal requirement, but every car with passenger airbags I've ridden in over the last five years at least has had the ability to disable the passenger airbag, and clear warnings that you should do so if a child is in the front seat.

A lot of those cars arnt compacts. Something like the Grand C4 Picasso is SUV size. And for the compacts they say:

ISOFIX points can be found in the outer rear seats and in the front passenger seat.

So then you most likely wont have space for the second parent.

The ISOFIX requirement is the big constraining factor. Ditch that and you can find combinations of compact car and child seats which will fit three across, though you’ll have less choice in terms of child seats.

Even if you ditch the ISOFIX requirement, it's still difficult to find a combination of 3 car seats that will fit across the back bench, even with large cars.

Technically, all cars can take 3 car seats (1 in the front, 2 in the back) if they have the mounts for it.

No kid who is small enough to be in a car seat should be in the front passenger seat.

And the space. I doubt any normal family car I've ever driven could fit a rear-facing baby seat behind a tall person in the driver's seat, for example.

Roads that have always been able to pass sensibly-sized cars on either side are effectively one-way now because of all the outsize vehicles.

You see them everywhere in urban and rural Australia too, though the aussies call them ute.

Honestly if my family is going to own just one car, it will be a SUV, instead of a sedan/compact.

Ute for utility vehicle, I presume?

Reminds me of My Cousin Vinny.

Heh. Another great performance by the late Fred Gwynne.

> foreign trucks are unprofitable in the US.

Toyota trucks are everywhere and our family 1995 Toyota t-100 regularly had people stopping us making offers on it from about 2005ish until I gave it to my half-brother in 2013 with almost 140k miles on it (which is nothing for a Toyota), I even had people knock on the door of our house offering to buy it when it wasn't for sale. The Indiana State Police (I live in Indiana) even had some of their fleet as Toyota pickups for years (they still might). Actually, I'm quite confident I received more offers for my t-100 than I did for my '67 c-10 and I'd regularly get stopped and asked if I was willing to sell it too (which I finally did when someone offered me twice what I'd paid for it, which I'm still sore about I really miss that truck).

To be fair though, Toyota does manufacture a lot of vehicles in Canada and the United States which gets around the 'chicken tax'.

The reason you don't see a lot of imported pickups is because most of them are absolutely tiny, when you see an Isuzu truck for example it looks about as practical as an El Camino.

They are also popular in Austria because you pay lower yearly/monthly taxes on small utility trucks even if you don't run a business. Plenty of large US trucks parking in the center of Vienna...

Same for the Netherlands, but here it's only for business owners. But nowadays even the mailman in a business owner, thanks to contracting changing the job market.

A small Peugeot diesel crossover, weighing 1392kg, will cost you €1484 per year in road tax. Meanwhile a Toyota Hilux at 2030kg will cost you €496 in road tax. Even a Ford F250 with the 7.3L V8 and 2850kg will cost you only €692 per year. Less than half of a family crossover.

The worst thing is that some pickup trucks don't have a bed big enough to qualify as a work vehicle, so they cut the bed and make it longer (VW Amarok) or they take out the rear seats and put a divider in between to create a cargo area. Or people just buy a bigger truck so it's big enough to qualify. It's also exempt from CO2 tax giving you between €5000 and €72,000 (not a typo) off your initial purchase. So the €256,000 Range Rover SVA suddenly becomes a whole lot more affordable at €184,000, just by tossing the rear seats, calling it a utility vehicle and registering it on your business.

Mind boggling that we do this while construction of new homes is shut down all over the country because of the nitrogen crisis.

Here in Belgium you have the rear seats taken out of any car and register it as "lichte vracht" (light cargo), massively reducing the taxes you pay on it. Anyone can do this.

I've seen an Audi RS6 like this.

Here are detailed pictures of a Range Rover Autobiography converted to a cargo van: https://link.marktplaats.nl/m1475620469

I've actually considered removing the rear seats from my Ford Fiesta simply for the increased practicality, was mostly just deterred by the hassle/expense of installing some kind of cargo floor to replace the seats.

My wife and I both own businesses here and neither of us have heard of this.

That's absolutely nuts.

The only thing I heard of is that older cars can be registered under a company and the market value used for tax purposes. That's why you see a lot of these massive Mercedes on the road..

What do new homes have to do with nitrogen?

The Netherlands outputs too much nitrogen. Mainly because we are the number two exporter of food. So we are drastically cutting sources of nitrogen. Construction of new homes is done by heavy machinery that output a lot of nitrogen into the atmosphere.

I should add that only 1 percent of nitrogen is caused by construction, compared to 40 percent being caused by agriculture.

Did you mean carbon? I’ve never heard of anyone caring about nitrogen emissions.

Lots of electric vehicles too, downtown Vienna is thankfully pretty hipster as well as cowboy.

I'd expect the lack of competition, especially from Japan, would make the American trucks more expensive and less reliable.

There is actually a fair amount of competition from Japan. The Toyota Tundra/Tacoma, Nissan Titan/Frontier, and Honda Ridgeline are all popular and in some ways better trucks than their American counterparts. I think many "truck people" are also people who tend to prefer domestically-made goods; in the same way that people shopping at Home Depot are more likely to buy products with the "Made in the USA" sticker on them.

The Tundra is the only full-size truck made in Texas.

The Titan is made in Mississippi.

The Ridgeline in Alabama.

Those who identify as Republicans seem to indicate willingness to pay more for Made in USA than Democrats according to the polls I've seen.



There's a bit of irony in that the Japanese car companies make all their cars (destined for the US market) in the US, whereas the American car companies tend to prefer Mexico.

In fact the 2019 Honda Ridgeline has more American content than any other pickup, US brands included.


Add to that the hardcore brand loyalty a lot of truck owners seem to have, it really is surprising.

What else is really surprising to me is their resale value, especially when they are optioned with desirables such as 4x4 or a diesel powertrain; 10-15 year old Dodge Rams with the Cummins are still selling in the $10k+ range, with some of the nicer 10-year-old examples fetching closer to $20k, roughly half the original MSRP

The Tacoma (Japanese) is the best selling mid-size truck in the US. It isn't the lack of Japanese trucks.

If you have 2-3 provider and strong demand that is enough competition

I mean, they are.

But they’re trucks and not cars, so things randomly falling off is part of the appeal.

How is the chicken tax related to practicality of trucks in urban settings? It makes American trucks cheaper. But OP's question was about the practicality of a large truck in an urban setting.

It seems like you wanted to show off your knowledge of the chicken tax and just threw it in an answer to whatever thread came up first.

I believe their point is thaat if the automotive industry has any control at all, then they'll lean toward the segment that has a moat to protect them from competition. So buying advertising to make it seem normal or desirable to have a truck for example.

It doesn't make them more practical, just more common.

>It makes American trucks cheaper.

Cheaper relative to the foreign competition, but the prices of American trucks are not reduced by the tax.

>It seems like you wanted to show off your knowledge of the chicken tax and just threw it in an answer to whatever thread came up first.

Maybe, but I'm sure there are a lot of people here who don't know about the chicken tax. It is relevant to a general discussion of trucks.

It's definitely relevant to a general discussion about trucks. I just couldn't tell if I was missing something and it was somehow directly related to trucks in urban environments.

>an exclusively American thing.

UK has Chelsea Tractors.

Though those are not usually pickups. More Range Rovers and similar. The Thais like their pickups though. Locally made Hiluxs are #1

They're very popular in the countryside. Pick-ups from Ford, Mazda, Isuzu are also locally made in Thailand.

They're used a lot as utility and work vehicles. Road conditions can be pretty bad especially during the rainy season.

In Bangkok small cars are more popular.

> Trucks in urban settings are an exclusively American thing.

I suppose you have never been in Crete, Greece. :P

Wouldn't they have that incentive regardless?

I found that once I owned a home, the utility for a truck doing "weekend warrior" tasks was great. Runs to the dump, transporting furniture, soil/mulch, firewood. Standard towing package for a boat or a rental trailer. Can also fit bikes, kayaks, skis, and camping equipment, no need for expensive roof rack accessories.

We use my wife's crossover for all of the family trips, so it's usually just me in the truck. Before I owned a home I enjoyed driving a nicer sedan but now I would now I prefer the utility of a mid-size truck.

I drive a Fiat Panda and I do all of those things. I perhaps spend a bit more time fitting stuff in (kayaks/skis have to go on top obviously).

I once managed to fit an entire king size bed inside a fiat punto, but it doesn't make punto a good choice for transporting things. Once you have kids, a dog, these modern mars-rover like baby trolleys, occasional need to transport furniture, etc. it's never enough space. And in Europe minivans cost the same as urban SUVs, so why not have some off-road capabilities too. At least it was my reasoning...

I actually rent a car for transporting stuff (mostly big stuff to the dump/disposal). The savings on fuel alone during the year make op for that easily.

Maybe 15 years ago I bought an old Mazda Protege, having downsized from a Dodge Dakota. I still needed to haul stuff occasionally, so I outfitted the Protege with a trailer hitch and bought a cheap 4x8 trailer. Best of both worlds.

I've been toying with the idea of getting a hitch installed on my Prius.

That is very expensive in most of Europe. Half Europeans don't buy new vehicles, they buy second hand, which makes owning way cheaper than renting.

I can rent a van by the hour at most of the large furniture stores around here. Standard license applies as well (<3.5t). You can rent bikes, scooters, cars by the hour as well, quite convenient if you live in the city center.

Cars are cheap and tax is non-existent here, 50 GBP (which is actually the rental cost here as well, but of course the wages are lower) represents 1/15 of the price of the median vehicle.

Renting a car is not expensive in most of Europe. It's absolutely normal and affordable here in NL to rent a van/trailer when you have a large haul.

Here in Czech Republic, Poland, Slovakia, etc is renting a car worth it if you do it maybe once a year, otherwise owning a universal large car is much cheaper. I rented a van for 2 weeks and realized I could have bought a used one for just 1.5x the rental+insurance price.

Here are much smaller (10x and smaller) taxes on vehicles, that is probably the reason.

Any risk analyst could tell you all the factors you don't take into account when you do a simple comparison of renting a new, cared-for, insured vehicle for which someone else is responsible vs. the crapshoot of buying something second-hand, which you now have to take on, whatever goes wrong.

I also doubt you are taking fuel into account with this comparison, which was the primary source of savings mentioned when you own a small car and rent a truck as needed.

Most people here drive Skoda Octavia which is one of the most fuel conservative vehicles on the market, worldwide. Having a smaller car brings no measurable gains.

Same for the UK. You can often rent a small van in the UK for less than GBP50/day and a large van for less than GBP75/day if you shop around. Sometimes Saturday and Sunday count as one day too.

Large trailers (if they’re big enough to be worth hiring instead of a van) will for most people likely need additional qualifications on their licence to be allowed to drive with so they’re less popular.

I would not want to make a trip to the dump in a Panda; for that I would want a trailer.

Front-wheel driver cars in the United States are generally not rated for towing, and can void your warranty. (It's silly, because as I understand it, the exact same car in Europe usually is rated for towing).

Minivans are the exception; they are rated for towing more than some compact pickups. Unfortunately, seat design means that many minivans no longer meet one of the original design criteria of the first minivan: the ability to carry a 4x8 sheet of plywood.

>> Front-wheel driver cars in the United States are generally not rated for towing, and can void your warranty.

That is crazy, no wonder many Americans think you need a monster-truck to tow a trailer. My small Audi A3 is rated with a trailer weight of 1400kg in Europe

Eh, my VW GTI has a section on towing in the manual that says, paraphrased: "Don't do this, also, this is how you do it" and any U-Haul rental place will (poorly) install a tow hitch for their small box trailers, even on compact cars

I only did a quick search and didn't find the latest model. But for the previous model you can tow 1600kg with a Golf GTI in Norway. The tow hitch can be ordered factory installed

You can use the Panda to tow a trailer, obviously you need to mind certain weight limits.

I wasn't aware those laws were so strict in the US, perhaps that is why trucks are so much more common. Owning or renting a trailer isn't uncommon here.

> many minivans no longer meet one of the original design criteria of the first minivan: the ability to carry a 4x8 sheet of plywood.

I don't know about "most". Current Honda[0], Toyota[1], and Chrysler[2] vans are still up to the task.

[0] https://www.middletownhonda.com/honda-odyssey-cargo/

[1] https://www.toyoland.com/trucks/sienna.html

[2] https://www.boston.com/cars/news-and-reviews/2016/04/02/2017...

I’ve never had an SUV. Every car I’ve owned - Hyundai, Mazda, Volvo sedans - have all had warranties and were rated to tow.

Carrying a sheet of plywood/drywall was a criteria for the first minivan?

Just like trucks, some of which are almost exactly 4' between the wheel humps. The Toyota Previa (late-80s to mid-90s) and early Dodge Caravan vans can easily carry full sheets of plywood.

That it is possible to put a full sheet of plywood in a minivan has nothing to do with the design criteria for the first minivans. The design criteria for Dodge could have been fit a family of six and have space for luggage and a pet carrier. It is surprising that fitting 4×8 sheets were an explicit design criteria.

They fit exactly laying flat, just like some pickup trucks. Not an inch to spare. That's not a coincidence.

A lot of it is possible for sure. I used to do a lot these things in a Subaru WRX (minus the towing of course). Even drove home from Lowe's with an assembled grill on my roof rack once.

Always hated filling a sedan with trash, yard garbage, or landscaping materials though.

It’s the first three items in OPs list that separate the truck from the crossover. It would not be feasible to carry a volume of garden soil, lumber, or furniture in your Panda.

I believe the Fiat Panda is pretty roomy if you put the seats down. I think sometimes it helps to have a truck if you're transporting more rough and dirty stuff. You'll not just mess up your seats in the Panda, but also potentially the exterior and door seals/trims etc.

These are neat vehicles. Unfortunately not available in the US. Well, I think there might be a Jeep on the same platform.

I used to own a Honda Jazz (Fit) and it could fit an amazing amount of things because of the flat floor, seats that folded flat and squarish rear hatch.

I used it to move a queen size bed, refrigerator, washing machine: stuff you'd normally need a ute or van to transport.

I don't think the Panda/500 platform would even considered an usable vehicle according to USA standards :)

In Europe instead of owning big trucks or trailers for occasional use, we just rent them when needed or hire someone (usually businesses) who also owns one of those to do it. Plus, almost every store will offer delivery for reasonable prices. It generally cheaper and easier this way.

But I guess in US this usually wouldn't be viable because of the big land and less population density.

In Germany at least we home owners have station wagons. They will do the job for transporting stuff 90% of the time and are still good for the Autobahn.

As one living in the US, I think renting a truck is quite viable, as is renting a trailer for your sedan/ minivan/ SUV. Oddly, we don't seem to do it much.

I recently bought a pickup knowing that the number of days in the year I need to transport bulky stuff can't really justify owning a truck. But since it (a Honda Ridgeline) is about as livable as an SUV, I didn't feel too foolish. Given that few luxury SUVs can be had for the $US 40k I paid, and given this truck's many upgrades that help it to rival a luxury car, I was sold.

We were originally talking about urban trucks, so these are not the people who totally need the vehicle. It is generally cheaper and easier to do that your way here, and most people do. But there is a very large subset of people who want a truck regardless of the cost. People in the country often have a legitimate need.

Actually sub-urban trucks, but that was lost in all the comments. For sub-urban, I’d expect an average of urban and rural.

I've found our minivan does most of that stuff just fine. For the times I need to haul more, we have a 4x8' utility trailer.

You’re wasting money. I did the math. It’s far cheaper to own a fuel efficient small car and rent a truck when needed.

How many weekends did you assume he would need a truck? And what value did you place on his time and hassle, renting and returning a vehicle each of those weekends?

I live in Houston, where there are LOTS of very very clean very very expensive pickups. Most are status symbols that rarely see any true use.

However, in my immediate social group, there are LOTS of smaller trucks or smaller SUVs, mostly because of the practicality for bicycling trips. Sure, you can do a roof rack or a hitch rack, but if you want to go out to the hill country with you and your wife and both MTB and road bikes, you find yourself wishing for a truck bed pretty fast.

There's lots of overlap in this group with other outdoor activities -- camping, hiking, some fishing, a very small amount of hunting -- that reward actual trucks. My friend J has a full-size (read: HUGE) Ford with back seats and a long bed, and uses the HELL out of it, since he travels back and forth to Colorado with bikes pretty frequently.

But he and his wife also have a VW they use for most urban driving. ;)

What about quick release wheels? You can easily fit a bike in a compact car or two if it's something like a Mazda 3 / Prius

I only own a compact and I use it for camping, mountain biking, dog hauling, etc. very regularly. I have utterly destroyed the interior of this car. The carpets are coming off of the floor, the seats are a mess, the headliner is well past what I can clean with a vacuum. The tabs that the bumper mounts to no longer exist, the drip tray under my motor lost a couple of mount points, etc.

Absolutely will be buying a truck in the near future for these purposes- and selling this compact to a high school student or somebody else willing to drive a ragged out hybrid.

The annoying thing is that, at least in the US, trucks are just getting bigger and bigger.

Small / compact trucks like the Toyota Tacoma have become much bigger, and other models like the Ford Ranger disappeared and have been reintroduced in larger sizes.

This is annoying, because the previous gen size of the Ranger (e.g.) is a really great and useful size. Most people who could use a truck don't need the giant "full size" models, and yet the market ignores them.

Hard to hose out the trunk or interior of a sedan after a dirty day of mountain riding.

You CAN, but it SUCKS, and it leaves little room for other humans or other items. Plus, it's super hard on the interior.

If you do this a lot and can afford it, a larger vehicle is a great option.

Until you try to pack your camping gear between the bikes and you end up with a cargo rack or cargo hitch.

It is absolutely no stupid question. That you ask this just shows you are a reasonable person :)

1. It is a status symbol (as in "my car is bigger than your car")

2. It is sturdier and has more weight so it will physically dominate the average car in an accident and provide more security to it's passengers.

The problem is, they're just bad vehicles. They don't handle well, they guzzle fuel and they kill more pedestrians. There is no point in them unless you're a farmer.

> There is no point in them unless you're a farmer.

There are plenty of trades that benefit from using a truck other than just farming.

Yes true, but I was really referring more to SUVs. Worldwide there is a real problem with this trend, and it is nearly all marketing. Certainly the average school run in the UK does not benefit form the extensive use of SUVs.

What about vans? Do people benefit from them?

Yes of course. But nobody would ever argue that a van is a better vehicle than a normal sized car for moving people around (unless you have a massive family). SUVs are a profitable marketing trend for car companies and nothing more. We are literally burning the planet and people's insecurities are being exploited to persuade them into oversized and (thus poorly performing) vehicles.

VW Jetta does 30MPG in the city, Jeep Wrangler does 22MPG, i.e. 36% more emission. In the winter conditions (e.g. Toronto where I live) Jeep wins hands down. I don't even have winter tires. If you drive kids, the higher and stronger vehicle provides much more safety. Is it worth an extra 36% of pollution? I don't know. But the view that SUVs are just a gas-guzzling marketing ploy is a stretch.

They may be slightly safer for the occupants of the car, but the height factor kills 30% more pedestrians and in actual fact accident fatalities are up as a result of SUVs as they incite risk-taking behaviour and roll over in accidents much more readliy. Additionally, they only have to accede to truck safety regulations with are less stringent than those for cars. I can point you to loads of papers and articles on this. They purely are a marketing ploy as they are more profitable vehicles for the manufacturers. BTW those MPG ratings are shit by today's standards; most cars do 45MPG+.

This is a very rational point of view but to be completely valid consumers would have to be rational consumers which I really don't see.

> physically dominate the average car in an accident

This is just such an American way of putting it. Sounds so much nicer than "kill everyone in the other vehicle to provide a marginally higher chance for its owner" but it's basically the same thing

At a certain point tho, if everyone else is driving a truck, you either drive a compact out of pure moral-high-ground spite or you get a truck/full-size SUV as well to even your chances of survival.

I'm not saying escalation is a Good Thing™, only that it's inevitable when people are culturally obsessed with driving absurd bullshit.

Or you do the math and realize that with a modern, safe automobile, your chance of dying in an accident with a pickup is so small that upgrading your own vehicle to a pickup is a rounding error.

To be clear, I agree that humans being humans, we do love to get into escalating arms races.

I've seen at least 3 reports in my area where a head-on collision with an impaired driver (in the truck) usually ended up killing or seriously injuring the passengers in this 'modern, safe automobile'. Some examples:

* https://www.kxan.com/news/local/austin/drunk-driver-who-kill...

* https://www.kxan.com/traffic/two-children-killed-in-cedar-pa...

* https://www.kxan.com/top-stories/two-from-austin-dead-after-...

* https://www.kxan.com/news/texas/married-only-minutes-texas-n...

Or you keep driving a sensible car because you don't want to give in to the stupid and prefer to spend your money elsewhere.

It is an arms race and it is the right time for the industry to use the growing fear and demand for security in the global population to make some extra $$$ (just seen from a purely economical point of view of course).

I agree that it is probably inevitable but there is also people who don't join the race and that is lifting my hopes.

If they are so dangerous, shouldn't they at the very least require a stricter driver's license?

Things like “danger,” “skill,” “knowledge,” and “safety” aren’t really part of license exams in the US. They’ll pretty much just give a license to anyone here, literally.

It’s actually one of our bigger problems (it has big implications on safety, infrastructure, urban planning, &c.), but not many people really care. Cars are too deeply associated with “freedom” and “success” and individuality; for a lot of people I’d say they might be the biggest icon of America after the flag.

Yeah that's not a thing here. I have driven a 26ft moving truck from a rental company with nothing more than a rental form signed.


You can huff and puff about things you don't like being "American" but the rest of the world is following along about as fast as they can.

I hope I did not offend you somehow by phrasing it too American but you seem to understand what I say just fine.

>Again, as I said, stupid question.

People will come up with all sorts of justifications for what is really an emotional purchase.

If you don't believe this take a look at the marketing for cars, the further upmarket you go the more it is laden with emotional triggers. Buy this car and your wife will become slim and attractive, your kids will love you, roads will become empty and smooth before you, that new speed boat will suddenly be within reach and trailerable.

Never mind the reality of endless car payments, clogged up streets, increasing pedestrian deaths, kids not being able to play outside, particulate pollution and climate change.

In the US, for many folks, their vehicle is an identity statement. Generally minivans, sedans, and econoboxes are the exceptions, but the marketing here for most other car models tries hard to sell some demographic that they can claim somehow to be special. And interesting. I suspect the majority of pickup owners want to make such a statement. For them, driving an SUV would send the wrong message.

As someone who has a truck in an urban area I have one just for the reason you listed. I dont use the bed often but when I need it I do not have to make special arrangements. While it is true that sometimes its possible to get free delivery for some larger items thats no guarantee and you have are dependent on their schedule versus being able to do it on yours.

If you're going to have a vehicle the flexibility of a truck is second to none.

Why not use a normal car and a trailer?

1.) Hitching a trailer is a hassle, especially if you're trying to hook it up by yourself. 2.) Storing a trailer can be annoying, depending on style, and some HOA's or apartments don't like the idea of one sitting around in plain site. 3.) The shape of many trailers is not as conducive to some tasks. An example: a lot small/medium trailers are square or enclosed. If I want to haul some 8 foot (or 16 foot if you have an extended-bed truck) 2x4's home from Home Depot, I can throw them in the bed of my truck with relatively little difficulty. There are many trailers that don't work for something like this. In fact, I can't think of any trailers that would work with 16 foot boards..

You don't buy a trailer, you rent it for €20 for a few hours (or a few more bucks for the entire day), move whatever stuff you needed to move and then bring it back. No storage or HOA issues.

He said "without further arrangements". You could rent a truck too but the extra hassle involved in renting anything is often not worth it, especially if you also have to coordinate a few other things or people.

Not worth the hassle? The last two moves I've done that involved renting have been supereasy, i pre-book the wagon online and then just flash my ID, then paying afterwards

Because: murica.

No seriously, trailer would be the sensible option if you only use the bed sporadically. Why ride around with lots of unused spaced and dead weight?

How isn't that the case with just about every vehicle on the road? well, Unless you have a smart car.

Adding more cargo space is easy with a trailer. Adding more passenger space isn't. And some permanent cargo space for weekly shopping is easier to justify than cargo space you need twice a year.

Just get a quad cab truck its the best of both worlds.

And where do you keep the trailer? That’s a lost garage spot and many HOAs don’t allow you to leave them parked wherever outside.

Over here in (Western) Europe most people rent a trailer when they need it, unless you are living more rural. If you need it once in a blue moon then renting isn't really an issue. Many places that sell large things, like IKEA, also rent out large vans basically for free if you purchase from them.

Right, but if you’re willing to rent, might as well just rent a truck on demand. At this point you’ve shifted the goal posts to, “why do people buy things and underutilize them instead of renting on demand”?

Why have a guest room when there are hotels you can send visitors to?

Why have a 4 door car that incurs most of its mileage in a commute with 1 or 2 people?

Well, here at least trailers are rented because you can pick up a trailer at the gas station at zero notice. Renting a truck is a little bit different.

Where is "here?" I've never seen trailers available to rent at gas stations.

Here in Sweden they're available at most bigger gas stations.

That's a sensible way to do things. In the U.S. I haven't seen it; maybe that's partly why pickup trucks are more popular here.

New Zealand

I don't think most people have guest rooms on purpose. More often those are the rooms kids lived in before they left home and then the rooms get repurposed.

Mine is actually on the side of the house, behind the trash cans (also forbidden). The HOA hasn’t messed with me because I let the HOA guy borrow it. Utility trailers are very useful.

I guess it depends how often you need to use the bed. If you have to truck around that thing all the time just for those few occasions every year when you need to move large or heavy items you might be better off just renting a van for the day.

People should just do the math and decide for their own particular case if hauling around a huge vehicle with all the disadvantages that come with it (maneuverability, fuel consumption, parking, etc.) actually pays off when they need the capacity, or if they're better off always using the right tool for the job (regular car for most of the needs, rent big one for the rest). YMMV.

> hauling around a huge vehicle

I’ve seen several comments in this thread that conclude that it’s wasteful to have the truck bed when you are not using it. Going one level deeper, to the owner it doesn’t feel wasteful on a day to day basis because you forget it’s back there when you’re not using it. But it’s so handy when you do need it.

Former truck owner myself, I downsized to a car after moving to a more urban setting. It’s often on the weekends that I loathe not having to pickup for various furniture moves, gardening, etc. since I now have to borrow and friend’s or rent one.

It’s wasteful in the sense that you use more fuel to carry around more car. You have a harder time parking and maneuvering in a city, and you generally take up more space than needed. Most people forget that what they do has an impact but this does not remove the impact.

How many times per year would you say you need to move furniture? If you do it 1 day per month but carry around a full truck and the above mentioned disadvantages the other 30 maybe it’s not that bad of a trade off.

Or just hire a van - I do this once a year or so when I need to move a lot of stuff. It's £30 for a day with a small van, £70 for a LWB transit (which is massive), or only £100 for a box van with a tail lift (basically a small lorry).

towing a trailer requires more skill than driving a pickup. there are some non-obvious but very dangerous mistakes you can make with a trailer that might not occur to you if you drive a small car most of the time. for example, if you load the trailer in a way where the center of gravity is behind the axle (or it shifts there while driving), you have just created an unstable system that will fishtail your car at speed.

I really wouldn't recommend that the average American driver use a trailer. renting a pickup from home depot is a good option though.

Where I live, you need separate insurance and in most cases a special license for a trailer. Also, in urban areas it's harder to find a place to park the trailer when you don't need it.

storing a trailer is even more complicated than just having a truck. Also, its extra steps.

If you live in an apartment in an urban area, where are you going to store a trailer when you're not using it?

Chiming in as another one.

I live in Los Angeles. Four years ago, I bought a pick up truck.

In my case, I don't have a long commute. I can bike to work. So when I need a vehicle, it's to take my kids around, haul something I can't carry with my bike, or head out of the city for camping/adventuring/etc. The truck has been perfect. As it is, I use the bed of the truck at least once a week. I use it like all the other SUVs on the road, only I much prefer the flexibility of a proper truck, let alone the real offroad and towing capabilities.

Moreover, I know it's going to last pretty much forever and should I get a second, electric vehicle, there really won't ever be a time when having a truck on hand won't be useful.

I have a Toyota Matrix. It's a hatchback with a back seat that folds down into a flat bed. It's big enough for me to fit a bike without removing the wheels. Works for appliances and furniture as well.

YES! I had a 2003 Pontiac Vibe, same car - different cladding, and the best feature of the hatchback was that the glass also flipped up independent of the hatch. I once stuck a massive snowblower in it that was only possible because the glass was up and the handles were hanging out. I really like station wagons / hatchbacks, but their killer utility feature is a rear window that flips open or rolls down into the hatch. Sadly no cars are made with that feature anymore.

Does it fit 4x8 sheets of plywood/drywall?

Dunno. Maybe if you also pushed the passenger side seat forward enough?

There are a ton of contractors in cities, in the Bay Area they probably make more than tech workers. There are also construction workers _everywhere_.

There are mosquito fleet trucks in SF whose whole purpose is to collect recycling and take it to the recycling center.

In western cities there are off-road enthusiasts who camp at places you can’t get to without a modified vehicle and winch (no crowded campsites).

Some people just like trucks and will buy them because why not?

> In western cities there are off-road enthusiasts who camp at places you can’t get to without a modified vehicle and winch (no crowded campsites).

Backpackers seem to manage just fine.

Right and both methods of transit are a hobby. There are plenty of OHV vehicles people live out of as well.

From my anecdotal experience, here are the main purposes:

* Hauling stuff from the home improvement and warehouse stores. Single family houses are a bit of work depending on age and when they are not, HGTV is the devil's workshop that invents the work.

* Safety: the feeling that regardless of who is at fault, you will live in a car crash. I have seen plenty of sad news reports where in a truck+car collision, the people in the car paid for it with their lives while the truck driver walked away.

* Status: possible - just don't have enough social understanding to know whether this is still a thing. I can imagine a jacked-up F350 or Silverado may be a status symbol.

There are two types of people: those who have trucks, and those who get their friends with trucks to help them move.

Everyone I know just rents a moving van/movers.

Weird reason to own truck if you only do it so your friends will call you over to help them move.

And those who don't have friends with trucks, so have to rent one instead.

Moving with a pickup truck sounds miserable. Why not just rent a uhaul?

I'm a married father of 3 with 1/4 acre of property. I did fine without a truck for years, but I bought an old pickup for $5k last year as our second family vehicle.

You can certainly make do with a smaller vehicle, but there are these occasional things that make having a truck suuuuper convenient. Some personal examples from the last year:

* Needed to top dress my lawn and it only takes 3 loads of soil from IFA to cover my 1/4 acre

* My father (who lives very close) bought a boat knowing he could use my truck to haul it when necessary. And yes, he talked to me about it first, and my family gets to use it whenever we want.

* I built a treehouse in this giant willow in my front yard and could not have hauled the lumber or fireman's pole without a truck

* With 5 people in the family we get huge Costco runs regularly, these are moderately easier to haul in the back of the truck.

* I get social capital when bringing my truck to any family or friend moving parties

* Used it to haul lumber, tools, and people when the extended family participated in our family cabin area's work day

* Hauled my father inlaw's motorcycle+ATV trailer on a family outing

IMO not everyone needs one, but in a community or geographically close family it is always nice to have that person you can call to borrow their truck, and if you're the one that has the truck then you get social capital when lending it and you also don't have to borrow one yourself.

For us since it's a second vehicle it does sit idle most of the time while we use the minivan for typical travel needs. But I have space to park it, and the truck obviously isn't wasting gas when we're not using it. And since we paid cash and it was cheap, there's just not much of a downside to keeping it around.

A truck in an urban area doesn't seem any stupider than a sports car. It's just a fun vehicle that people like to drive.

Aside from the Hauling and Towing. The primary reason I prefer Trucks and Full Size SUV's is the Ride Height.

I am 6' 2", Climbing in and out of a Car that sits 6in's off the ground is not fun for me, and I do not want to do that every day.

I prefer lateral movements, and a Truck or Full Size SUV's standard Height is just about perfect for me

A thing like VW Touran or Renault Scenic will do that for you with much smaller fuel consumption, better ride, and also easier parking in tight places. (I'm 6'2" = 188 cm and >100 kg and VW Golf Sportsvan is very convenient, no need to step much up or down).

(And they will tow the things that most people tow, like a trailer that weighs a ton).

Renault does not exist in the US at all (or at least not in my part of the US)

VW Touran has a ground clearance of 156MM or 6.14 Inches and to total height of 1659mm or 65in , my Truck as a ground clearance of ~10in and a total height of 77in, that may seem like a small amount but is huge difference to me.

a VW Touran is exactly the type of vehicle I avoid

Further while available are not practical because there are very few mechanics that can work on them or have parts for them it has to go to the dealer which is $$$$$$

I tend to Stick to American Manufactured vehicles from Ford, Toyota, Honda, etc.

Ground clearance is good if you drive off-road or on very bad roads - you didn't mention that. If you drive on regular roads, 6 inch ground clearance is just fine, and you experience of the height at which you go to the car is not about ground clearance, it's about the height of the seat from the ground. For me, Touran class is very nice: I don't need to sit down or step up.

If you are 98 % of time driving on good roads, the generally lower center of mass makes things like a Touran or Toyota Verso safer and better to drive than a truck.

If you really need some more ground clearance, then there are things ranging from Honda CR-V (a very nice drive but a ground clearance closer to 8 inches) to Suzuki Jimny (a vehicle with actual off-road capability, but driveable on roads and small).

Of course there are people who actually do need a truck, but very often the cited reasons sound more like excuses.

Buying American, when you are yourself American, is of course a thing for many.

>and you experience of the height at which you go to the car is not about ground clearance

They are proportional, most Seats sit about the same height from the floor, so Ground Clearance it an accurate measurement to know how far the seat is from the ground.

I'm a small car kind of guy myself and generally consider trucks in the city to be silly. my last roommate had an f150 though and there are a couple of advantages. some of the roads in my area are simply awful, so jarring to drive on in my car that I have to go 10mph under the speed limit sometimes. there are also poorly designed intersections where you can easily hop the curb if you're not careful. driving a big truck means you don't have to care about this stuff. you don't feel the bumps at speed and you can just drive right over the curb with no problem. people don't cut you off or pull other aggressive moves on you nearly as often. my roommate has driven away (after exchanging info!) from two accidents where the other car was totaled.

I don't want one myself, but I can understand the appeal.

Practical answer: the people who actually need to move furniture, or other large items, in a city environment use vans.

Look at businesses and what their fleet vehicles are. No one uses an F150 in the city. Why? Because thieves very often steal stuff from the flatbed. If you actually want to transport large, bulky items in a city environment, you need to close off the back so that no one can look in and see the cargo.

2020 Ford Transit-350 Cargo is $35k.


F150 comes more in handy in rural areas, where there aren't thieves around. The flatbed is useful for hauling very large, oversized items, such as mountains of topsoil / compost, or rocks for your garden, or bundles of hay for stuff.

But when it comes to "city items" like furniture (often valuable furniture, so thieves want it), or large equipment like computer racks and servers... a van wins.

I think you're making a decent point, honestly. I live in a close-in suburb of a midwestern city and I think quite a few of the trucks in my neighborhood are probably 99% unnecessary from a utility standpoint. Having a reasonably sized pickup truck is a godsend for me right now, as I'm renovating our house and landscaping the yard. But frankly, since I work remotely, I really want this truck to be the last vehicle I ever purchase for myself (wife still commutes), and ideally we'll be a one-car household in the next 5 years.

For many, it is unneeded. For some, they only want the large vehicle, stability, and power for status or offroading. For some, they want to storage capacity for rare incidents. Some actually have use of it, just more rarely (say, a woodworking hobby). Then, certainly some professionals in construction have daily use of it.

Hard to judge which demographic you're looking at while driving around.

Back in the late 90's, for me anyway, buying a Ford Ranger strictly dominated just about any other choice. I didn't have a family/girlfriend so I didn't need the extra seats. 20mpg was pretty darn good compared to most trucks. The smaller cab meant I could heat/ac the interior pretty quickly. Easy to drive and maintain, and finally I had all that utility for when I needed it, which was rare but often enough to solve a lot of infrequent problems. It just seemed like the most practical choice. (I still have that truck, my family's other vehicle is a CRV.)

NYC is constantly choked for public parking and the rise of SUVs has made it so much worse. If every Ford Explorer owner bought a Mini Cooper we'd get 10,000 parking spaces back and less smog too.

Here in the southern US, it's mostly a status symbol that people delude themselves into thinking they have a utility need for. Typically people here will have at most 5-6 true needs for one each year, and deal with horrible gas economy (and blinding folks in sedans) since gas is cheap. Around here there's a lot of towing (boats, trailers, etc) but it's rare to see anyone make use of the bed.

Urban person here. Anything I go on a trip or go camping (many times a year), or have to move or help someone else move (unfortunately also many times a year), I wish I had a truck. I'm paying for a vehicle anyway, why not have one that does everything I need?

They are also useful if you own your own business that requires moving things around.

Note that I do not own a truck, I just wish I did.

I played in a band for years in Los Angeles and I loved being able to fit all of our gear into my truck on the weekends. Everyone was bummed when I finally sold the truck and bought a Prius. The Prius is surprisingly spacious and I could still fit my small drum kit and an amp or two but not our whole setup. Admittedly _much_ better for the weekday commute though.

As I told an old co-worker with a new 5 series BMW when he asked the same question: differentiator, every douche bag in LA has a BMW.

People assume trucks are safer in accidents, even though that is by most measures a wrong assumption- Humans are irrational in that way.

(the other big reasons for their popularity is status signalling, and perverse incentives created by regulation of "passenger cars" as a category that have negatively impacted the quality of "regular cars" in the US.)

We have a term for this:

"Cuz 'Merica"

Yep, Americans love to overcompensate. It is in our DNA.

You know the answer to this. People like status, image, and power.

You heard the man. He's going to buy one for "status symbol".

God save us...

Better than the same person buying a gasoline or diesel engine pickup.

White people love boots and pickup trucks. That’s like asking my uncle why he has a $1k sound system in his $2k car (black folks love bass). I think it’s a cultural thing.

The US is a very wasteful society. It makes sense that they'd want to burn twice as much fuel as necessary to get themselves around. Watch Wall-E again to see where we're heading. Those "SUVs" are quite literally obese versions of the cars of the past. Obese vehicles to carry around obese, useless bodies.

Nationalistic slurs aren't ok. Would you please stick to the rules so we don't have to keep banning you?


How is that a "nationalistic slur"? It is well known that the per-capita consumption in the US is roughly twice that of the rest of the developed world. I'm sorry to inform you of this, since you are clearly American, but learn to face the facts instead of drawing one of your "-ist" cards.

A comment like "obese vehicles to carry around obese, useless bodies" is not neutrally discussing "per-capita consumption in the US" or any "facts". That was a slur. If you keep posting flamebait, we're going to have to ban you. Actually you did it again with this reply, but I'll consider that an offshoot of the GP.

Really though, why not follow the rules at https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html and take the spirit of this site to heart instead of getting serially banned? It's in your interests for at least three reasons. First, those rules are what keep HN interesting and prevent it from burning to a crisp. Scorched earth is no good for anyone, and there aren't that many places like HN on the internet, which for all its faults is worth preserving. Second, if you just blast the things you dislike with a flamethrower, it only discredits your positions. Keeping your cool, staying neutral, and explaining your point of view in a positive way would be more effective and have more dignity. Third, following HN's rules takes discipline and self-control, classical virtues which we all profit from cultivating.

Btw, I'm not an American. Normally I wouldn't say that because the rules don't depend on what I am, nor is "American" somehow a bad thing to be. I mention it because you said "clearly". A lot of things—maybe most—that people perceive "clearly" on the internet are actually untrue. This is what happens when users function in flamewar mode. If you switch to thoughtful mode you are more likely to get your facts right and to help other people do the same. Basically the idea is to learn from each other. Don't you think that's worth doing?

I feel like I am taking crazy pills with the amount of good sentiment to this design. This thing is absolutely fugly. The guys over at Rivian must be having a party right now.

As someone with a strong preference for a classical aesthetic I'm finding it hard to reason just how drawn to this vehicle I am.

It's just so outrageously different, offers the functionality of both a truck and the tech and performance of a Tesla, and isn't comparable with other 'trucks' which I'd argue are homogeneous in nature, cliche, particularly un-aesthetically pleasing and are synonymous with gas-guzzling North American indulgence.

Regardless, it's another instance of Musk pushing boundaries which I find myself continually applauding.

How old are you? This Reminds of what we thought the future would look like in the 80s.

I’d totally buy a reasonably priced car with this aesthetic.

Not only 80s! Plenty of sci-fi shows had something similar as a generic future car design base, except with a proper paint job and extra lights here and there. This car can be easily turned into something that looks properly modern.

Related, this seems to be something of a theme with Musk's companies. Landing rockets is an old-school concept, and Starship looks like it was taken straight from the cover of some pulp sci-fi work from the 60s.

Your latter observation is not surprising. The 60s-80s were times of confidence in the future, in progress. We visited the moon, flied in supersonic airliners, and we were confident that we would keep exploring always further, always faster.

Now that spirit has largely faded away, the West seems to have lost faith in progress in exploration and is focused in preserving what we already have - sometimes for good reasons (environmentalism and fight against climate change), sometimes not (disproportionate attention to minor threats like terrorism, fear of immigration, etc.)

Musk clearly still believes in progress and exploration, hence it's not surprising that his designs end up evoking reminiscences from that era.

The 80s were when we thought the US and the USSR would kill all of humankind with H-bombs. Blade Runner if what we thought the future would look like if we were lucky enough to have one.

And this new Tesla seems reminiscent to me of that pessimistic idea of the future, trying to survive the apocalypse on Earth. Not like the optimistic future of 2001 A Space Odyssey.

Did you? While I was not alive yet in the 80's, according to my parents, the threat of a nuclear war was gone in the 80's already, due to Gorbachev. (we are 'from the other side')

Born in late eighties in California. My parents named our first dog after Gorbachev. I think that relief was felt from this side as well.

Yes, the only way Starship could look more retro futuristic would have been to use the ticket from Tintin:https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/b/bb/The_Adv...

Born in the 80s but old enough to remember the end of them. If what you're saying is that in producing what is a very futuristic truck design, especially compared to the current market, that Musk is actually evoking a sense of nostalgia from a demographic likely to be the target market then I can't say I'd disagree.

I fear Musk wants to recreate all those future visions he's seen in eighties movies and tv shows in his childhood. If his next product is the Airwolf helicopter I feel vindicated.

I almost laughed out loud, I love the cybertruck but man it's so blatant. It feels like someone just blurted out a hilarious joke and you want to laugh out loud but you kind of glance at those next to you to see "is this ok with you people"?

It's definitely tapping into current retro-futurism that is super focused on vaporwave/80s stuff. It's a phase that I wouldn't personally bet on, because at the time they were simply projecting what they thought the future would look like, and were just wrong.

Were they wrong if this truck hits the streets next year? I'd say they were right on the money.

Eat your heart out Baudrillard

The map is NOT the territory, it prefigures it and shapes the perception of those who meet the territory already ruled out around them like an endless net of roads across the desert floor.

Welcome to the desert of the real.

If the territory is designed off the map, however...

> and were just wrong.

Not anymore!

the fact it looks like a truck version of the DMC DeLorean doesn't help either.

A delorean crossed with a big trak. Reminds me of the old battlestar galactica shuttles.

It's defiantly got a Cylon vibe going on...

Yeah! Would be great if the system could say “by your command” at appropriate times. And have a Cylon/Nightrider sweeping red lighting.

It’s a Delorean El Camino.

Fitting that it's released in November 2019, the month nad year the original Bladerunner was set in

Uh, how can I, being a hardcore Bladerunner fan, not have spotted this? Thanks.

>How old are you? This Reminds of what we thought the future would look like in the 80s.

As soon as I saw it I thought "dystopian future military transport". Then I remembered Blade Runner is set this month, of this year, and uncharacteristically giggled.

It's Brutalism with a wheel at each corner. Not gonna lie, I kinda love it.

I like it, but I think the wheels look too small. If the wheels were like, bigger, it would look fucking cool.

Those are 35" wheels. This thing has got to be absolutely oppressive in person.

Heh just wait for the Urban Warfare edition that adds mace dispensers above the windows...

I noticed this too, the tires just doesn't fit very well in the overall design.

That's an interesting change from the 50's retro scifi look.

Looks like Ark II style scifi from the 80s.

It reminds me of the Vector.

I'm tired of curvy trucks anyways. Maybe it's a good time to go back to something more straight. I also like that the exterior can take such a beating. It doesn't make sense that a tough pick-up can get so easily dinged and scratched. I would MUCH rather have that durable shell.

I agree that curvy got taken to excess, but I'd rather go back to something like a Land Rover Defender aesthetic, where every surface is something to stand or mount something on, often with built in grip surface or mounts.

This dystopian cross between stealth bomber and Mad Max is angular, but straight in all the wrong directions.

It looks like it's going to be a challenge to pass EU pedestrian safety regs, but I'm quite impressed they have achieved the ugliest road vehicle bar none. I'm amazed the balance of comments here seems hugely in favour - to me it looks like a wind up!

Love this comment. I think you're right on pointing out the lack of mountable surfaces. I have seen that mentioned elsewhere. This thing needs to accommodate accessories.

I love how this thing has the dystopian look, yet it doesn't need gas. Mad Max was all about gas. Maybe gas would make a comeback in a Mad Max world since chargers might become hard to come by.

If ugly was a goal, this was an interesting way to accomplish it. This is ugly that I would be okay caught driving in. This is ugly which achieved a goal, rather than not attempting to be ugly but horribly failed. ;)

There's still some time before this thing actually ships. Maybe they'll make some changes so that truck people could properly attach things like gun racks and winches.

With the smooth straight sides you could probably use large suction cups or magnets to attach rails or hooks. It would be nice to have hard-points for a more permanent fixture and one that wouldn't be so easy to steal.

I agree with everything you said and still I kind of love it. I get to live in a world where sci-fi props are driving on the streets like it's normal. And it's electric. The current times are weird as hell, but it's a relief when the times are comically weird.

I think people are missing something - the shape is part of why it can perform as well as it can, as well as have the excess of cabin space that it has. The boxy Land Rover design wouldn't get close to the 0-60 times (And likely reduce range significantly) because of the extreme drag the vertically flat body style creates.

Doesn't have to be entirely slab sided, but going on the couple of people I know using pickups for work, they have added no end of toolboxes, winches, custom mounts, light bars and such so they can do their job miles from anywhere in the dead of night. The lovely clean stealth lines without a horizontal surface in sight of the Tesla seem entirely unfitted for being actually used for real work...

0-60 wouldn't care about drag much at all. Highway cruising would.

How many American pickups would even meet EU pedestrian safety regulations today?

No idea, but there's loads of world market crew cab pickups around in the EU these days. Though the insane size stuff like Ford F250 and Humvees only seem to turn up very rarely (thankfully) by personal import, which presumably sidesteps a lot of the regs.

I'd be amazed if Tesla simply chose to ignore the whole market though...

Had the same reaction, it must be a joke. It looks worse than a PT Cruiser and a Multipla together



I was actually wondering about how that car is allowed on the road considering it looks like it would slice anyone it hit in two.

I wasn't aware the US didn't have regulations for that.

Current US pickups just direct blunt force trauma to your chest and vital organs instead.

Finally, someone has built a vehicle that makes a Porsche Cayenne look good!

The fact that you hate modern truck design means you are not representative of 99% of truck buyers. Have you noticed the Honda Ridgeline has completely fell in line with other manufactures styling because of I presume market pressure?

I'd never claim to be representative of 99% of truck buyers. Like most here I work in tech and live in the city.

Do I see this turning up on construction sites in the next few years? No, probably not, for many reasons. Can I see it capturing some of the market of recreational truck buyers? I can, just as the Model S took part of the luxury sports car market by appealing to people who could likely afford more expensive "status" vehicles by being different.

Ah, I don't know. The Model S had a much wider market appeal because it looks exactly like a Maserati. A commonly agreed upon good looking car. I agree that you're probably the exact market this monstrosity is aimed for. But that 'status' based market is tiny. teensy, itty bitty. Why do you think the Model 3 was such a profitable success?

If you don’t think the Model 3 is a status vehicle, you crazy.

It has status like having the new iPhone on day 1 has status. Different than big money status, but still status.

Yeah I agree, different than big money status. It's like sexy-i-financed-this status.

The type of status that this truck is trying to market to is like the `I paid 1.5 million cash for this crazy pentagon` status.

The first time I saw a Model S I thought Ford had done a great job at updating the new Mondeo - it's a handsome car, but not sure it looks like any Maserati I have seen.

Looks more like a modern Jaguar than a Ford or Maserati

Go look at the Ghibli, it has the exact same body lines, windows, lights

I'd see this turning up on some construction sites and in other industrial applications. As it is, it won't appeal to the crowd of people who buy trucks to show off. But, looking at the specs, it just might appeal to people who actually use trucks for work.

Yes, the built-in 110v/220v power outlets and air compressor would go a long way when your on a remote build site. I can imagine it being very popular with "handyman" contractors you hire to fix your fence or repair a porch railing.

The only other option I might add is a battery charger for hand tools. I know they can plug into the normal outlet but it seems inefficient to go from 400v --> 110v --> 12v.

Most construction workers want a longer bed. This truck is too short to hold a sheet of plywood.

Some, yes, but I see fewer and fewer 8' beds these days. Most contractors and corporate construction vehicles seem to be the higher trim variety with 5-6' beds and extended cabs.

You can still haul 4x8' sheets, you just have to be more creative and haul fewer at a time. Otherwise if you need so many you'd reach capacity in an 8' bed, you'd likely have them delivered to the jobsite (yes, even if you own a truck).

I was wondering about this. Will the design fail as it's so out there and truck owners see themselves in a classic truck shape. Or maybe the design works because truck buyers want a large, stand-out vehicle and the extreme design of the Tesla might just appeal to those who really want to stand out.

Who are the 1% of truck buyers who don't like trucks?

Whether you like it or hate it, you have to take your hat off to the Tesla marketing department. This thing is a meme on wheels.

_Everyone_ is going to see this, have an opinion on it, and want to know what everyone else's opinion on it is.

Exactly right. It's polarizing. Very polarizing, if this comment thread is any indication. And the pole of people who absolutely love it will buy it. That group of people does not need to be large for this to be successful.

This is a great example of the marketing strategy that advocates focusing on a small group of very passionate customers. If you can create a set of fanatical early adopters for a brand-new product, you're on your way to success. Very few products achieve immediate mainstream success and assuming that Tesla won't likely have the production capacity to meet mainstream demand anyway, this is a very smart play.

It looks like the attempt of a “futuristic” vehicle in an early 90’s low polygon video game.

Reading these responses makes me think I’m out of the loop on some joke. Seriously. I had no doubt when I came to the discussion that all the comments would be about how ugly it is.

Maybe this is one of those white/gold vs. black/blue dress things. Or the “yanni” thing.

I’m blown away by any of the comments that find the design appealing.

>It looks like the attempt of a “futuristic” vehicle in an early 90’s low polygon video game.

In a world where every manufacturer makes cars that look basically the same as every other car in the world, I'm fucking stoked on this.

they don't, people just buy similar looking models because weird cars generally don't sell well, with some exceptions.

Ok, please find me the two most different looking trucks that I can buy (no concept models).

OTOH, the SSR had a foot bed? Its not like it was just a great truck that looked bad, it wasn't actually a good truck.

Err, four foot bed.

Since the context is a four+ seat vehicle with cargo space but not a dedicated cargo mover, I feel justified in offering you:

Pontiac Aztek and Jeep Gladiator.

I immediately thought of the Aztek when I saw the pop-out tent photo on the CyberTruck website.

It seems to me that most of the engineering is in the 'skateboard', There's no reason they can't sell the same chassis with two different bodies. - The cybertruck for people who want that. - A more conventional body for anyone else.

I think there is some cost issue in making the car armored. With a sandwich material it would be way more feasible to put together planar cuts than to cold form them. Armor usually is pretty stiff.

maybe once the reality of the armor sinks in people will re-evaluate the esthetics of it.

I think it's sad though that people want to have an armored car that looks like a stealth fighter.

It's also strange that you can sell it in a context of 'being prepared', with the offroad capability and everything - I don't know a better example for a vehicle being dependent on an always-on infrasructure than an armored electric truck.

> I don't know a better example for a vehicle being dependent on an always-on infrasructure than an armored electric truck.

Why? It is so, so much easier to produce your own electricity than your own gasoline. A truck running on slightly impure ethanol or gasified wood would still be more independent, but there are performance issues to consider there.

After reading up a bit more I think I was too hasty with that statement. Getting a practical solar capacity is quite a lot cheaper than I imagined for many latitudes.

> I think it's sad though that people want to have an armored car that looks like a stealth fighter.


Because it's not a car that is not armored and just looks like a stealth fighter. And because it's not a car that is armored and looks like a regular car.

It seems to me people like the martial aesthetic and function(!) as a status symbol, maybe without reflecting why the martial aesthetic is what it is. To keep people in a metal shell with guns on it from being shredded.

A civil society should find these things ugly but respect their necessity, not celebrate them. And if civil society has a real need for these things, it's in a sad state.

What if it just looks cool because angular things made out of metal look cool, not because we are death fetishists or living in a dangerous society?

Also, weapons and weaponry can be aesthetically pleasing without accepting the inevitability of violence.

A civil society can also find martial design cool as hell.

And here you go. The Walrus ATV from Carrier Command.


Reminds me to the car from the opening sequence of Another World: http://firsthour.net/screenshots/another-world/another-world...

It's almost a concentrate of the 80s born crowd childhood. Yes it's low poly, you can add 80s neon design cues:

- https://imgur.com/a/eHUNSqu

- https://imgur.com/a/xt3Cbm4

- https://imgur.com/a/kYy7mVv

- <insert delorean bare metal>

You can even see a little Mad Max oriented punk on elon buddies clothing on stage.

Note that Peugeot attempted a similar thing with the 508 electric revival recently.

It looks like a shark. There's definitely a deliberately threatening aesthetic to it. That's likely why it's so polarizing. As someone who likes medieval weapons, predators, and martial arts competitions, I definitely find it a beautiful design.

Just needs more spikes on the front ;)

> early 90’s low polygon video game.

Seeing the truck I was immediately reminded of the original Death Track game.

Low poly is the new black.

Do you find hypermasculine aesthetics (big game hunting, big guns, aggressive looking trucks) appealing though?

>I feel like I am taking crazy pills with the amount of good sentiment to this design. This thing is absolutely fugly.

The funny part to me is that this design is something I saw often maybe 20 years ago. It's the stereotypical future car that major automotive design departments often came up with, and sketched up in programs like Alias AutoStudio, back when it was still Alias. None of the designs ever saw prototypes let alone production, I'm guessing largely because they were too radical for the time and thus seen as too risky.

It's like it's half future car of the early 2000s, and the other half a nod to DeLorean.

Flash forward to 2019, the world's falling apart and going crazy at the same time, things feel a lot more surreal, advancements are becoming too numerous for the average person to keep track of, AI is a big deal, smartphones and all manner of tech are just a boring fact of life now, and as always the future is right around the corner, but for real this time.

Likewise, 80s and early 90s nostalgia is in vogue right now. Cyberpunk 2077 is nearing release. For the target audience of this car, they remember the 80s because they either grew up in it or lived it.

When you lay eyes on this thing, you immediately go "What the fuck, is that a real car?" I can think of no better marketing.

It's a rather genius design in my opinion, a retrofuture tribute to a future that never was, but now is.

Analysis aside, I tend to agree with you: it's pretty ugly, but for some reason I really like it.

The look grows on me the more I look at the model. I’m used to thinking trucks are fugly, though. They’re often gigantic rectangles that I associate with noise and function over form. This is definitely more progressive looking than the blocky designs I see on the road.

I personally hope it fails and they redesign since I don't want to be forced to drive around in a city with a bunch of these on the street - they are that ugly to me, viscerally ugly. And I waited for the better part of a year to watch yesterday's live stream, hoping they would get it right while worried they would miss the practical side of things after the odd choice on the model x doors which allow for no roof racks. meh. But the basic tech is phenomenal.

>This thing is absolutely fugly.

Fugly is in the eye of the beholder. To me this is an outstanding design, with crazy cool cyberpunk inspiration, and finally a fucking bold design move -- 99% of cars looking the same shit, even sports cars like Lamborginis sticking to the same designs since the 80s...

I've had to see such an interesting take since the DeLorean....

That's because the look of a Lamborghini is one of it's core signature elements. They could design a very nice looking car, but if it doesn't look like a Lamborghini, then a lot of their client base would be disappointed.

You'll notice this pattern with many of the really high end cars. Some signature elements are always present and evolve only very slowly over time. You could call it the master stroke, it's what makes a particular brand distinct from others. This is deliberate and I for one like that.

A complete newcomer can design whatever they want right away.

That's because the Lamborghinis from the 1970s and 1980s looked amazing!!

Your opinion may vary somewhat

It looks like some old cyberpunk idea of what the future would look like. For that, I love the design.

But it’s absolutely hideous without taking it in the context of resembling sci-fi. The wheels just look goofy.

Now if it concealed the tires, it’d look great. Just a solid block of metal. But it’d also be hell for maintenance.

It would be cool to have if we were always in the smoke ridden neon illuminated world of Blade Runner. But outside of that I think it is pretty fugly.

I love the idea of a perfect meme vehicle. Almost bosozoku like. But I'm guessing it won't do well in the market

I think this car will be popular in Japan.

Huge vehicles are incredibly unpopular in Japan. The country is full of incredibly narrow lane-less roads that have traffic going both ways.

Goofy? Having driven through rural America this summer, the thing will fall right in.

Agreed, it reminds me of alienware laptops. Had all these good specs but everybody was too embarrassed to be seen in public with one.

I think it's genius. A lot of pickup truck owners seem to feel that trucks are manly and Tesla owners are wimps. This post-apocalyptic nightmare of a truck will make it hard to keep feeling that way.

I hope they've included biodefense mode.

This is a really good point. Hard for others to make fun of your fancy tree hugging electric truck when it looks like that.

I agree, it looks like a stealth bomber fucked a Prius.

A stealth bomber from the 70s!

Apparently the F117 looks like that because they didn't have enough computational power to simulate more complex surfaces.

> The guys over at Rivian must be having a party right now

Except the base Tesla is $20,000 cheaper than the base Rivian.

The High end Telsa (with 500+ miles of range and 2.9 0-60) is the same price as the base Rivian.

Rivian are shitting themselves right now about pricing.

$30,000 cheaper you mean. The mid-tier dual-motor is $20,000 cheaper.

Honestly this could be a brilliant strategy to destroy competition if I didn't think they were so inept.

What makes you think they are inept?

The Model S has been awarded as one of the best vehicles ever made, and has the highest safety rating of any car ever made.

Same for the Model X, and the Model 3.

Why do people still think Tesla "can't do it" when they already have, time and again?

I agree with all of what you are saying. But, the truck shown lacks wipers or side mirrors, it has a brake light on the tailgate (illegal in the US so the design they ship will need an entirely different rear design due to the 100% width tailgate), they didn't actually test their glass before smashing it twice on stage, the most common pick up designs are single cab, not crew cab but their design is not adaptable to a single cab design, the bed is shorter than the F150's, Rear visibility is much worse than competition(in fairness the AP cameras will help), they are back to the Roadster's Yoke Style steering wheel which has been proven to be unsafe (as it lacks grab points and is uncomfortable for one handed use (you can't 10 and 2 it)). It very clearly is half baked and an attempt to hit every one of a set of crazy goals much like the Roadster 2 when they should be trying to just ship 1.0. This is Model X all over again, it will be late, over promised to the point where they will spend crazy money making it actually happen and when it does ship it will lose money because it costs too much to make.

To be clear, I think it looks freaking awesome and I would love to own one. I also think they still have not shipped the Roadster or Semi, the Model S and X refresh is next year and the Model Y is still a year plus away even though it shares most parts with the 3. This is the same story as Apple's iOS 13 launch, they have packed their schedule with cars to finish while building a bunch of new factories, while just a year ago they were taking all of Tesla Solar's employees and putting them on the model 3 R&D line. I'm bearish on this not because I hate what they have done in the past but because I want them to actually succeed mass market and be stable. Keep in mind, the truck market is supposed to be a larger market in the US (but more than 2X) than the Model 3's segment. Why can't they just ship a good, shippable, profitable truck with Tesla's DNA? It's like the falcon doors, a bit power mad, in a year this is going to be the example people use to say why Elon should not be CEO of Tesla and it sucks, because Elon at his best is probably the best CEO around, at his worst he will trash the company for a cool looking truck.

The prototype roadster v2 when first shown also didn't have side mirrors or wipers. Considering they're currently promising cybertruck delivery in late 2021 (which means mid 2023 in Tesla Time) they'll have plenty of time to fix the design. I doubt the yoke, auto-moving cover, and built-in-ramp will make it to the production base model, too many expensive moving parts.

Re: rear visibility, in the test-ride videos the rear mirror is actually a video feed from the rear AP camera, the same that is done in the Chevy Bolt and has worked well there. Works even better if the cab is loaded.

Isn't it legal to use cameras/screens in place of side mirrors?

For brake lights, they should use Apple's technique of laser cutting the metal, so the LEDs shine through: https://venturebeat.com/2011/11/04/apple-laser-manufacturing...

I know that design is totally subjective, but somehow this reminds of the Homer-Car design-wise. Is it just me or do a lot of the late Tesla / SpaceX designs look like a 7 year-old draw rockets and future-cars back in the 70s and 80s?

We could probably learn a lot from 7 year olds. It is an incredible age. First grasp of reason and a real understanding of the world, and nothing has been beat out of them yet.

Ten bucks says this thing has never seen a wind tunnel, which is strange for something that's meant to be energy efficient

Designed for suburban speeds - air resistance is not that important.

It obviously is. The front is all the same angle.

Beauty must be in the eye of the beholder. This just screams FU gas at the top of its lungs.

As a rider who hates breathing diesel particulates, I love it.

The current F150 is probably the ugliest car I’ve ever seen, but I understand that sells pretty well. Granted, I am not the target demographic.

I had never thought I'd want a truck. This though is totally retro and I absolutely love it. Looks like Elon Musk is finally making stuff that's something Tony Stark would've created (aesthetically). Seems very Iron Man to me.

Having grown up in the 90s with a dream of becoming an automotive designer one of my favorite designs was that of the Lamborghini Countach (1974). The Cybertruck design is reminiscent of that design (to me), and I think that's one of the reasons it's drawing me in so strongly.

I think you're just too used to the kool-aid. From an engineering perspective, curvy cars are a disgusting PIA. There's no way to work on them without special tools, every dent is a big deal... they're like long fake painted nails: a total hinderance to work.

This car looks like I could beat the fuck out of it and the fix it with a sheet of metal and either a welder, some bolts, or some rivets. I see beauty in adaptability, which is something modern cars have none of.

I find it hard to believe the typical market for pickups would actually find this an attractive vehicle as well. I keep seeing "Masculine" referring to the design, but this looks like a fairly poor attempt at superficial masculinity, and definitely not a genuinely rugged and practical vehicle, which is what is generally considered attractive in a pickup or offroad vehicle. Purpose is the aesthetic, rather than aesthetics being the purpose.

> definitely not a genuinely rugged and practical vehicle

Why would you say that? I think its ugly but maybe if all trucks looked this way we'd think the current ones are the ugly ones.

I'd say it looks like this BECAUSE it's rugged and practical.

There doesn't seem to be a practical reason for it to look the way it does, so I doubt it looks that way because it's more practical. For one, the roofs angle is counter-intuitive if you intend to put a roof rack or other kinds of utility racks over the roof or roof and tray. The rear tray also has sides that go up to the roof. How are you supposed to put stuff in and out from the side of the tray? That's a pretty common use case, ignored for aesthetics. If the panels are aluminium, it's going to get roughed up pretty quickly in the tray sides and top parts as well.

The rear tray is also looks smaller than the renderings make it out to be. They have a quad in one picture that takes up the full length and then a sleeping fitout in another that also takes up the full length, either it's a really long quad or they are really short people.

I'm sure this will become more fleshed out over time, I doubt this is the final specification for the car.

I can't wait to see all the different renderings people come out with, to show potential aftermarket parts for this thing. I think that will be the real display of whether or not it will make for a good utility vehicle. I can imagine this looking extremely purposeful and rugged with the right equipment on it.

Yea, it feels like a parody of a Tesla vehicle, especially when you see the interior.

Nothing some paint and a headlight rack can't fix.

I can’t wait to see one with a gunrack.

In the next episode of Mad Max.

I'm not a design expert by any amount. But I really like its shape. Maybe it's because I was an 80s child. It's like Robocop's car. The design attracts me much more than the more ... conventional, rouded? Tesla vehicles.

You do know how G Wagon, the ultimate $ symbol, looks like, right?

More or less still like the first generation of it?

I think the $30000 price difference would put a lot of panic in that laugh if Rivian didn't have some insane pre-orders in the bag from Amazon.

Rivian pretty much is half Amazon, preorders from yourself dont count for much.

100K guaranteed sales count for a lot. I'm sure Tesla would love it if their shareholders placed 100K orders for this new truck.

It's big, bad and punk hitting the current trends. In a decade we're going to look back on this and wonder what we were thinking.

I'm wondering what they're thinking...right now.

They're planning to look 'futuristic' for 2024. This thing will launch in 2020 along with Cyberpunk 2077, and will have the rough edges shaved off it for 2024 when it lands on mars. Elon's oversight role will increase and the main thrust of the project will be handed over to someone who can 'make it big' and focus on creating a glut of average items on Mars in roughly the same style, that Elon validates.

Then we will transition into a feminine, high quality style for 2028.

And the Rivian has a lot of smart features truck owners like.

To me it looks like the Tesla is for people who want that truck and the Rivian for people who need a truck.

And yeah imho the Cybertruck is very ugly. It looks like a copy of the Maserati Boomerang (1971) which was futuristic back then.

But maybe Shirley Bassey was right: it's all history repeating.

I love it. It's like one of the 'all sharp angles and super futurey and stuff!' cars from an 80s sci-fi film, where they've taken the body off a real car and welded up some ludicrous replacement. I mean why not FFS - have you seen what Chinese tastes are doing to BMW's grills?

It reminds me of a Prius and the other early EVs that weren't very popular exactly because they stood out in a bad way. I think part of Tesla's appeal is that their cars look mostly "normal", so to have this ridiculous stand-out design is unusual.

I don't like the tail end look - I wish they had kept the tailgate mostly vertical. However, if the marketing is to be believed re: the shape of the vehicle lending itself to its safety and strength, then I see beauty in function.

Yes it's not "right", fugly is relative to context, trends can make something fugly pretty. It's on the extreme-limit side of the spectrum. It's probably gonna have enough buyers to have its place IMO.

The Rivian is so uninteresting though. It's small and dainty and looks like a Honda, which isn't a good thing for a truck.

It’s ugly but it’s different. People can see you have one from 8 miles away. That’s an essential part of a status symbol. Like the extremely ugly Louis Vuitton print.

Your not Crazy... I would buy a Rivian over this every day

It looks absurdly expensive to produce, and is ugly as sin.

Some people won't "get it", and thats OK.

It's kind of an f'off statement considering the electric mustang looks a lot like a tesla.

I know it can't be, the design has come out too soon.


ew the rivian design looks 10x worse than the tesla one

Ugly is the purpose. And I fucking love it.

Rivian and Bollinger both.

It looks like a DeLorean.

really? I think it looks so awesome, like a car out of Halo!

I think this really comes down to expectations. Imo, Tesla is a luxury brand. I get that some people feel like the Model 3 is a Tesla for the common man but the common man is either buying used or they're buying something that can be reliably fueled. That being said, and the reason for saying it, in the world of luxury brands idea matters too. The idea that an electric vehicle can compete on most of the spec sheet with a combustion/hybrid engine is sexy to people with futurist enthusiasms because electric things are being pushed as the sexy eco-friendly future right now. Obviously that's all just my own opinions, but I've yet to see much else to explain Tesla's balance sheets (plain incompetence isn't something I'm willing to buy into from the CEO that's working at innovating the astro services market as we speak).

I guess taste really is subjective because this is the best looking truck I have seen in my life

My initial thought was that I could probably sketch this thing in CAD in like ten seconds. Rectangle. Triangle. Extrude. I'm sure the person at Tesla to whom that task was assigned enjoyed that aspect of the design.

As the current owner of a 2017 F150 long bed 4x4 with an ARE bed cap, I'm super-tempted by the Tesla. It's a total no-brainer for the people buying things like the Honda Ridgeline. It's less so for people who treat their truck like a work vehicle.

Frankly, I don't think will cannibalize the existing P/U market as much as it will sway more people away from SUVs into [Cyber]trucks, especially if the back seat is as spacious as a normal full size truck's.

It has a 6.5' bed, and I look at the bed to judge whether it's used as a truck or not. Shortbeds are unusable and nearly useless for any real work. They're so frustrating, that I don't even consider a shortbed truck a truck at all. It's a family sedan masquerading as one. Tesla very wisely delivered a real truck.

The only thing the Cybertruck needs is more colors. It's a little odd looking, like Robocop is coming to town, but it's time for changes in the market. The Model 3 converted me to viewing existing cars as dinosaurs, and this will probably transform the truck market as well.

I grew up working on a farm, and while I'm a developer today, I still get my hands dirty. I'm in for one.

6.5' is a short bed, though - it's the same length as most short-bed full-size 1/2 or 3/4 ton pickups.

It's only a "long bed" when you compare it to midsize trucks like the Tacoma or Ridgeline, which is what this vehicle really is more akin to (especially the first generation Ridgeline, as you can't replace the bed on the Cybertruck or the old Ridgeline as it was a part of the unibody - not good when you accidentally overload or bend up the bed, unfortunately).

Curious to see what the production version ends up like, but I don't know if this is really going to be taken seriously by people who need a "real" truck, at least in the current form. It's more of a weekend warrior vehicle right now, I'd say

6.5' is a 'standard bed' in the F-150 line. 'Short bed' is 5.5', 'long bed' is 8'.

You're not exactly wrong, but you are kinda wrong if you judge based on the which bed length is most commonly purchased by consumers (as opposed to contractors). On almost any dealer lot, you'll find maybe 1 8' bed, and it'll probably be a base model 1/2 or 3/4 ton with a bench seat, perhaps 90% 5.5' bed trucks, mostly in luxury trim, and a small handful (if you're lucky) of 6/5' bed trucks.

The drivability of a 6.5 vs 5.5 is huge because of the turning radius resulting from the longer wheelbase. Most people don't want to have to think about where they can park.

I had a short-bed diesel for 5 years or so, and put it to plenty of use. Yes, it's not ideal for common dimensions of lumber (but you can just pop the tailgate down and put some little red flags on stuff), but it will still haul tons of random things (for me: large trash dump runs, car engines on stands, a set of 16 car tires, several 55 gallon drums, a full bucketload of topsoil, a pallet of landscaping rock, etc). IMHO, a short-bed truck is still a truck.

You used yours like a truck, yet would've been better served with a standard or longbed. I'd be surprised if you ever bought a short bed again, as most people who do use their truck as you did find the disadvantages.

In particular, I despise the fact I can't even put a dual sport bike in the back of shortbed without the tailgate down, which means everything else has to be tired down as well. My point was really based around the fact that most people who buy crew cab shortbed trucks are using them as a man's suburban SUV.

> As a truck guy who has owned a lot of trucks and currently owns a 2017 Ram 2500 CTD 4x4 and a Land Rover Defender 110, I'm telling you right now: this is going to kill it.

We'll see.

If it does kill, the looks won't be a problem, they'll be an asset - a more extreme version of the Prius.

But if it doesn't, a lot of people will blame the look.

This demographic will love the look. Have you seen pickups lately? The Big 3 have been chasing an industrial aesthetic for years. This was a very bold move and I feel very strongly that this will shake up the market.

The specs are a truck lover's dream. Most pickups are driving office dudes like me to our office jobs every day. We hate the gas mileage but we love the look and we want something powerful enough to tow the boat or ATV hauler on the weekends. This truck claims it can do that AND beat a Porsche off the traffic light AND never have to visit a fuel pump again.

Have a model Y on order... was waiting to see what this would look like as I've got an older truck I'm kind of sick of maintaining and I fall square into "the demographic" you speak of. This is maybe the ugliest truck I've ever seen in my life. I desperately wanted Tesla to come out with a 3/4 ton frame and a semi-normal looking truck. Instead... this. This is 100% NOT what the big 3 have been chasing, and this isn't shaking up the market. I just hope it doesn't bankrupt Tesla in the process... Here's hoping the final product looks a LOT different than what they had on stage tonight...

This thing is Pontiac Aztec bad.

>This thing is Pontiac Aztec bad.

Is it just me, or DDG really shows an image of a turd when searching for "Pontiac Aztec"? :D

same for me lmao

I'm 100% with you on this. That c-pillar makes it a non-starter for me.

Can I ask where you are located, or what kind of truck owners you know? I can't see anyone, like 0% of the rural owners I know, thinking this truck looks good. It's crazy, I would be embarrassed to be seen in it.

There are other electrified truck companies bringing up their models. Maybe even faster than Tesla can get this thing out. Ford is already testing their electrified F150's. Current owners will just buy their same brand when it becomes electrified.

One thing that could really hurt Tesla down the road is the new platform-architectures existing car-makers are coming up with. Pick-Ups in the US are one example, another one is the new Peogeot / Opel Corsa plattform in Europe. The latter one, while not a dedicated EV-plattform, is able to be used for both, EVs and ICE-powered cars. Granted, these small EVs are still rather expensive but offer a ton of extras and are with sibisidies under 35k €. Big bonus, they are produced at the same assembly lines as the big-volume ICEs. So once demand for EVs increases they can easily switch, with economies of scale these small EVs are becoming cheaper and scaling volumes won't be such a big issue neither. I guess the same can apply for pick-ups in the US. And than again, Tesla never had one single face-lift or model replacement behind them.

Said it before and I stick with it: It's a race between tesla coming up with a sustainable and profitable way to mass produce EVs before money runs out and incumbents figuring out the design of EVs that can be mass-produced at existing facilities. tesla had a huge head-start, but incumbents are catching up and the window of opportunity for Tesla is closing but not closed yet.

That's what I thought when the young kids started lifting their trucks. But now it's common.

and you can get this thing with 3 motors.

Are you really equating the styling of this pentagon-on-wheels with a lifted truck? This is bosozoku levels of crazy. And that sure isn't common.

The Rivian has 4 motors by the way...

It’s incredibly masculine looking and that coupled with the power seems like a no brainer for a lot of people around me (I also live in a rural area)

The Tesla truck thing has always surprised me a bit since it feels like a misreading of the audience.

When I think of the people that like big trucks, I think of the people blocking super chargers or blowing black smoke out the back onto Teslas. People that hate EVs because of a tribal political affiliation. This is the group that cares about status and argues over Ford vs. Chevy.

Outside of those people are the ones just doing regular work and I think they just want a regular looking truck to put things in (not the market).

Honestly don’t know the market for this one. I love my model3, but I’m unsure of this.

>The Tesla truck thing has always surprised me a bit since it feels like a misreading of the audience.

I watched the stream. My impression was "someone made a truck, designed and marketed it based on my preferences when I was 19."

If they had done this in 1999, I totally would have bought it.

But then I wasn't the sort of guy who bought pick up trucks. I was the sort of guy who got beat up by the sort of guy who bought pick up trucks. (I mean, by 19 I had a real job in a much larger city and was away from all that, but... the memories were very fresh.)

But that's the thing, even if this is totally unappealing to the sort of people who currently buy pickup trucks... this is appealing to a completely different group of people who currently would not consider a pickup truck.

This might explain the bad goth 'neuromancer' cosplay. to get someone like 19 year old me to buy a pickup, you need to overcome the associations with pickup trucks. and... yeah, that's going to alienate the existing pickup truck drivers.

While they may stand out, only a tiny percentage of pickup truck drivers are like this.

There are so many people who have desk jobs or jobs where they don't really need or only occasionally need a pickup, but they still drive one (at least where I grew up, in Northern California). Because of the Tesla truck's performance, and many other EV advantages, my guess is that this pickup truck will indeed appeal to a large number of pickup owners, including showboaters, occasional towers, occasional use daily drivers, as professional/hardcore customers.

Exactly. My F150 bed currently contains 6 egg boxes of children's clothes to donate, two folding chairs, a foot locker sized rubbermaid container filled with emergency gear & camping stuff, a large Patagonia duffel full of sports clothes, a smaller duffel with cleats & soccer ball, two pairs of basketball shoes + ball, an extra jacket and a large umbrella. Yes, I don't need to keep all this crap in the truck all the time, but it sure is convenient to have that option!

> currently contains 6 egg boxes of children's clothes to donate

How do you fit clothes in an egg box?

Egg boxes hold 12 (I think) flats with 30 eggs each.

You can get them from supermarkets. And they're thick cardboard. Great for moving books.

This is an egg box where I’m from. You wouldn’t get anything in it except eggs or maybe thimbles. I guess yours are different.


We call that a carton not a box.

Ostrich eggs?

I largely agree with your points, but anecdotally, I want one.

I have wanted a truck for a while since I like the look/'pretend' utility (but don't like the tribal-association of trucks). This is so ugly its a statement item, but its a Tesla so its still a status symbol. Its fast (so I don't have to compromise on that bmw/audi) and it can haul shit if I ever need that.

Hi, F-350 owner here. My wife and I's other car is a Prius.

In addition to woodworking and desiring a truck bed for that, we tow a camper with which we can boondock (dry/off-grid camp) via solar power. I purchase carbon offset credits for our trips. Not ideal, but better than nothing. I have not modified my truck in any way, especially not to "roll coal", and I report others that I see doing that. I take pride in my truck passing emissions tests and would never attempt to defeat ("delete") those controls. I would never consider blocking a charging station, and in fact we almost bought the Prius Prime plug-in hybrid when it was first released but it wasn't available in our area yet at the time. Otherwise my other car would need those chargers. We also take the Prius as much as possible, and only use the truck when necessary. I enjoy hypermiling in the Prius, too. I hate that diesel trucks like mine create other non-carbon pollution like NOx so I try to only drive it when needed, and would gladly adopt new hardware to reduce those emissions further if it didn't hurt overall efficiency. I also would love for carbon-neutral (or at least carbon-reduced) biodiesel that doesn't come from destroying palm tree forests to be an option until EV trucks are more available. I have other truck-owning friends that are also not obnoxious intentional polluters that hate EVs. Anecdotally at least, my friends and I are the exact market for the Tesla Cybertruck. My gut feeling is that there are more truck owners that think Teslas are cool and want one than those that block charging stations.

I guess my point is, next time you pull up behind a heavy-duty truck, it could be me, a vegetarian EV/hybrid lover driving a carbon-offset, emissions-compliant truck on their way to go off-grid camp via solar power, waiting for the Cybertruck to launch.

You sound like the ideal person for the cyber truck then - are you excited about it? Is this something you really want to buy?

I am excited about the potential of EV trucks and a Tesla truck especially. Absolutely I'll consider it once it's reviewed well and it actually ships. After the Model 3 situation I'm not going to put down a deposit or anything, I'll wait and see. But it's certainly a vehicle I'd strongly consider switching to.

Thanks - it'll be interesting to see how many people like you there are, hopefully a lot.

I think this is going to be more of a fleet niche -- companies and gov't agencies that have a ZEV requirement for some percentage of their fleets, such as in California.

For rural/agricultural uses... EV doesn't make sense until range is fixed. 500 miles is certainly good enough for most applications, though, so maybe my thinking is out of date.

For urban contractors/builders etc., an EV truck does make sense; they're not typically going to drive more than 50-100 miles in a day. Then it comes down to cost, though; your average plumber or electrician isn't going to plop down $70K for the 3-motor AWD 500 mile range model.

For general rough-and-ready pickup drivers, the Tesla comes across as too exotic and weird looking. Those guys (and I think it's almost all guys) are going to wait until their F-150 or RAM wears out, then buy another one used. Or they're going to wait for a more "normal" looking EV truck that has decent range and off-road capability.

I'm thinking the rural/agricultural market might be quite a factor - I was pretty excited about the pneumatic option, if it can work as a small tractor that needs fewer repairs and recharges for pennies, it could catch on no matter what people think of the aesthetic.

Have you considered that your assumptions may be heavily flawed?

> When I think of the people that like big trucks, I think of the people blocking super chargers or blowing black smoke out the back onto Teslas. People that hate EVs because of a tribal political affiliation. This is the group that cares about status and argues over Ford vs. Chevy.

That's a surprisingly narrow minded world view. Are there walking stereotypes of comically evil rednecks who blow black smoke and hate on gays 10 times a day while being racist? I've met some, very few in fact and I live in a place where I go to see rodeo 3 times a year. Is that majority of truck owners? Not even close.

Where I live trucks are a sort of "I make good money I can afford one" vehicles. All young men want to have one! Tesla's truck fits the bill so well with young city dwelling men who grew up on 80's sci-fi, who love new tech and toys, and who want to proclaim "I am successful! I can afford this ridiculous over the top TRUCK"

I have been 'coal rolled' before so it's a real thing, but I could be overgeneralizing from this and videos on Reddit of trucks blocking superchargers.

That said, there's a reason all the truck ads have deep voices and talk about being 'tough' etc. Ford and Chevy sell a lot of trucks so presumably there's something about the market that pushes them to this sort of advertising.

I suspect the overlap of the people positively influenced by those ads and the people that like EVs is small and of those the people that would like this design is even smaller.

Maybe there's a new market that will want this, but I'd argue it isn't most of the existing truck market.

I was waiting for something similar to the early sneak design that took a conventional pickup design and pushed it a bit.


This truck design is too far out for most people. I suspect tomorrow morning Detroit will have a good laugh at Tesla's expense. Will this prove to be Tesla's Edsel?

I know what you mean. I think of the "rolling coal" type of person too. Maybe they hate Teslas because they felt excluded by the trend...

> Most pickups are driving office dudes like me to our office jobs every day.

Given the price of that thing, you should just buy a second, smaller electric car (maybe even a Twizy). If you care about your CO2 emissions, it's better to give up looking manly and driving like a madman at traffic lights.

That's the thing people miss. A lot of people that buy Teslas don't really care about CO2 emissions that much. Really it's just a bonus. That's kind of the point of Teslas, make a car so fun and cool that you buy it "despite" being electric. I bought mine because of the performance and technology. Only after having it do you realize how nice it is to recharge at home, etc.

Every time Musk starts taking pre-order $ on a new model, it comes out ultimately at least a year later, the low priced option gets scratched, and the specs get curtailed some.

Not trying to rain on your parade or anything. But be real. The $49k model S never materialized. The $35k Model E never materialized. This thing won't either. Unless you got the $$ to blow on a top-end model, don't expect much.

It is only asking for a $100 deposit.

The 35K model 3 is available and better than what was originally announced.

This is a truck designed for people who don't need a truck but would like to appear as though they do. It's like a fake status symbol of being working class for someone who buys 40k plus vehicles but wants to downplay their wealth. Basically for the Range Rover crowd except they put a bed on it to show how serious they are about its truckness.

Can't really see anyone who relies on their truck for actual work wanting something like this and the product page is clearly geared towards more outdoor recreational types (Eg. Pics of the camping top extension and towing a weird looking camper or futuristic dirt bike). Compare to Ford and Chevy marketing.

I wouldn’t be so quick to assume the Cybertruck look is what most pickup owners are going for. Maybe eventually...

In the near term Bollinger Motors[1] has electric pickup and SUV models that look a lot more like rugged high end trucks. Granted they cost nearly twice as much, but these are all luxury vehicles and people already spend 100k on a Ford Raptor.

1: https://bollingermotors.com/

> This demographic will love the look.

You must hang out with some very atypical truck guys. Most would not be caught dead in an electric vehicle, and certainly not in something that looks like this.

As a car guy, this is an amazing truck. Dual-motor can easily tow track car and all necessary gear. Built-in compressor means you can use air-tools on the go without a generator. Maybe even fit a quick jack in the trunk or trailer. AND it drives itself to the track. Never need to bring spare batteries for tools. It’s insane that it can do this, and likely win every drag race against street cars. All while blasting the Bladerunner theme on max volume.

AS a Truck Guy who has owned a lot of Trucks and Currently owns a F-150 XLT 4x4 and has Owns no less than 8 other Trucks and SUV's from Ford....

This is going to flop, big time. This is the worst looking Truck I have seen in a LONG time, this will not appeal to people that buy the Best selling Truck on the market, The F-150.

I have no interest in buying this, and i would not drive it even if they gave me one for free. Sure the performance is there, ofcourse when Ford and other manufactures release their Electric Trucks then when can do a Apple to Apple comparison.

I will be waiting on the Electric F-150, which should have comparable specs to the Rivian, and I would much rather have a Rivian Truck than this monstrosity

Why is this being downvoted? It's an opposing view and they are being honest. I ordered a Model X, getting it in two weeks, and am looking for a pickup truck to eventually move to after the Model X. I would not buy this, sorry. People like me will compare Rivian to CyberTruck and I think it's a natural comparison. We aren't going to compare traditional pickups, though, because people like me don't want an ICE pickup truck. With that said, why would I not buy a Rivian? The plan is to wait till they've produced it for a year, compare to current electric pickup market, take advantage of Federal Tax credit of Rivian and evaluate if it's worth it. I am the suburban guy, I am a Tesla buyer, and I pride myself on engineering + beautiful design. Tesla HAD that for all their vehicles, imo. Cybertruck is a niche vehicle, I wish it well, I grew up in the 80's so it is nostalgic but omg it makes me want to vomit. Sorry, I wanted to buy it, really did, but 80's design for cars, clothes, and hairstyles was a nightmare that I couldn't wake up from, kinda like the shirt that stopped halfway down your waist. I am not an 80's fan....born 1977.

In my case, while I like the aesthetic, I think aesthetic considerations aren't supposed to figure into buying a truck. Trucks exist to do work, buying one on aesthetics seems counter to the whole reason to own a truck in the first place.

> I think aesthetic considerations aren't supposed to figure into buying a truck

Oh, geez. "Truck guys" in the US are some of the most opinionated, style-conscious folks you will ever meet in an automotive context. They're really something if you ever find yourself hanging out with them.

I believe you. But truck guys don't discuss the style of their truck, how pretty it is. They brag about how they abused it or carried unreal loads or took it where no road legal vehicle should ever go.

Even if the Cybertruck kicks ass on the road, it's not going to impress these guys. And if they're the target market for this new truck, Tesla's in trouble.

No, they really do talk incessantly about style and looks. Really. Including flamewars about which manufacturer has 'ugly' or 'beautiful' characteristics.

Weird. I worked with a lot of truck guys in Canada for a while, and I'd be extremely comfortable mocking any of them for mentioning they care about the exterior look of their truck. A lot of contractors will even deliberately make their work vehicles look rougher so customers don't think they're charging enough.

Interior aesthetic is a different matter though. Strange how culture winds that way.

Neither are true, Some Trucks exisit to do work, some are bought because of Aesthetic's not different than sports cars or anything else.

Not every buys a Truck purely for work. Just like not everyone buys a car just for transportation.

Further even if you remove the Aestetic debate over the Cyber Truck, for Work is not practical, any contractor will tell you side access is VERY VERY important, the truck bed on this is completely impractical for traditional work people do in a truck

Born same time, love all that shit still. :)

Do people in the rural/suburban US really tow that much that often? Seeing the number of trucks just doesn’t make sense (especially given how few are towing anything). Is there a little measure of lifestyle signaling or macho involved in truck ownership, or towing capacity comparison?

Car companies don't limit themselves to selling people a car based on what their life is like now, people have already got something that lets them do the things they currently do.

They can market it based on what their life could be like if they brought the car. Perhaps in vague, emotional terms.

You too could be kayaking/mountain biking/skiing through picturesque countryside with your pretty, athletic friends... if you buy a Brand X SUV. Be confident in any situation. Whatever, wherever, whenever. Adventure starts here. Built tough. Driven by dreams. Past the pavement. Built for city roads and no roads.

Spot on, this is also while many people back in the early 2010s were so turned off of laptops without CD drives, they might not ever use it, but they want to know they can. (ev dn through they didn't realize the tradeoff was battery)

There is an exceptional explanation of this in the Adam Curtis documentary "The Century of Self." In the 20th century, advertizers pivoted from marketing on the basis of need to the basis of identity.

Its like asking if people in US really shoot to defend themselves that often?

Nah I think that’s a more valid “I don’t know when I might need it”-situation. I never felt that “who knows, I might need to tow a sailboat any day now”-feeling though.

Whenever someone I know moves, everyone with a truck comes along to haul stuff.

Why are trailers so unpopular though? I see the appeal of the truck when it’s needed but unless that’s a large fraction of my total trips why wouldn’t I rather have a regular car and tow a trailer when I need to move or take away trash? The flatbed is an extreme waste of space when it’s not used for hauling anything.

That is, assuming the other values (economy, comfort, handling, ...) are better in cars than in trucks. I’m starting to suspect that either cars+trailers are seen as unattractive (like station wagons) or that those other values aren’t as highly valued as they are outside the US. One big difference I can point to is the size of parking spaces...

I know several people with campers, horse trailers, car trailers, boats, etc. Most aren’t maxing out their towing capacity, but if you’re driving through any mountains, you’ll want to be well within those limits unless you want a white knuckle experience.

I have a Silverado diesel truck which I inherited. I don't tow often, but I do use it a lot for landscaping work -- hauling mulch, brick, and lumber in and yard waste out to the recycling center.

I do that with my small car and a trailer (Granted, I can only do around 500kg/1000lb on it, but it's usually enough). It's at least definitely worth the economy given how far I drive between every time I need to dump/tow.

Its going to sell well, like every Tesla. I suspect that it won't sell well to people who buy trucks for their actual utility, but you're right that this thing will totally be a status symbol; just not among people who would utilize its capabilities.

Just look at the success of the G-Wagon among white LA uurbanite-types. No one cares about the utility. It just looks weird and gives off this vibe of "I work! Trust me! Look at my utilitarian car!" That's who this will sell to, and it will sell well.

The G-Wagon is a very high end luxury SUV with a huge profit margin. As such, MB can afford to sell only a handful. But at the advertised price, the Cybertruck offers no such margin. It'll surely will be a money-loser for Tesla which they'll have to sell like F150s for a decade just to break even.

The Cybertruck isn't about profit. It's about making Tesla's name synonymous with shock and awe.

Wow, really? I feel the completely opposite.

I also consider myself a "truck guy". In my entire life, I've owned a single car. I had it for about a year when I got up one morning, drove to the dealership, bought a new Dodge (basically the same as yours, except 1500), and told the girlfriend she could have the car (hers had seen better days).

I would not be caught dead in one of these.

(Disclaimer: I'm a Harley riding country boy from the midwest, probably not Tesla's major demographic anyways!)

So you're going to downgrade from a 3/4 ton frame to something that falls between a dodge dakota and ram 1500...

In other words you overbought and don't use the diesel or the 3/4 ton frame? Because this is definitely NOT a replacement for that.

The vast majority of SUVs and trucks are bought to signal some sort of status or affiliation to a group. Just look at how clean these vehicles are. And some of the brands. Porsche SUV. Mercedes pickup.

The people who actual use these class of vehicles for real have mud splashed over the vehicle and extra cans of petrol. They aren’t going to buy an unproven vehicle that you can’t refuel.

They’ll probably make a killing with the Cybertruck.

>In other words you overbought and don't use the diesel or the 3/4 ton frame?

I think you just described 80% of truck owners.


95%. Myself included.

Let some reverse marketing lose:

Cybertruck: Not Your Urban Cowboy’s Truck

The trimotor version claims to tow 14000+. A 2019 Ram 2500 tops out at around 19K, but my 2017 is a little less. The 2019 F150 tows about 11K.

This truck is no Dodge Dakota. This sits between a half-ton and 3/4-ton truck.

I suspect the electric motors will - in practical terms - tow vastly more than gas or diesel trucks.

and they will get the energy back going downhill.

It will ultimately be limited by it's cooling, as all Teslas have been. Can it manage long, steep grades while towing? Downhill, ICE motors can be driven by the wheels to preserve both fuel and brakes.

If regenerative braking is good enough technology for trains, it ought to be good enough of a technology for a light truck.


Note that trains are a very different scenario due to not being battery powered.

Many (most?) trains dump excess charge into the grid, meaning that it has no limitations on brake power nor capacity.

Battery-powered vehicles have to protect their battery, limiting brake power to keep the battery cool, and brake duration as it cannot overcharge the battery.

To compete with a train, a battery powered vehicle would need to implement rheostatic braking (i.e. brake resistors).

Of course, conventional engine braking is not worth comparing to any of this, but I thought it was important to emphasize that trains ≠ cars.

Of course there are many differences between a train and a car.

But the technology is exactly the same: apply an electrical load to a motor/generator and it will generate a braking force. The source of the load doesn’t really make a difference as long as it meets implementation requirements.

(Perhaps maybe the most ironic way they could dump excess electricity could be by running the onboard air compressor — literally the same thing an ICE vehicle does to dump energy when engine braking: compressing air.)

My point is that the technology is definitely a good fit for braking large loads.

Of course, except that normal cars have no component to dissipate the load. The battery is the only way, and it has significant limitations.

A resonable auxillary air compressor won't make a difference. With a heavy trailer going down hill, you'd need to at least dissipate tens of kilowatts, maybe even touching triple digits if you also need to slow down.

Nowhere to dissipate the power → no regenerative braking.

There’s probably a few things this truck has that normal cars don’t have.

The air compressor comment was an illustrative tougue-in-cheek comparison, not a serious suggestion.

Imagine the amount of power needed to run an air compressor with a displacement in the 5-6 liter range. That’s exactly the amount of power we’re talking about. Because that’s literally what an engine-braking truck is doing, it’s driving its engine as an air compressor.

Your “tens of thousands of watts” estimate is probably just about right. And that’s not anywhere outside the realm of doable. That’s probably well within the abilities of regenerative system in the drivetrain this vehicle will have, but even if we assume it isn’t, a 10kw resistive load is a $100-$200 part, off the shelf.

My PHEV minivan (Chrysler Pacifica) does close to 100 kW of regen in hard braking. I imagine the Cybertruck could easily double that, probably a lot more.

Peak dissipation is not particularly interesting in this context.

That current is charging the battery—not dissipation. I have no idea what kind of energy the friction brakes dissipate (that's not reported on the dash like regen braking is).

From the perspective of braking a motor, charging a battery is just a way to dissipate energy. A bad one at that, considering that there must be ample room for charge, and the charge rate must be limited.

Sports cars dissipate several hundred kilowatts in their friction brakes (for reference, the Porsche Taycan which can almost do with only regen braking can regen ~270kW). A hard-braking truck will exceed this significantly, but of course distributed over many more brake discs.

However, for the trailer scenario, I assume that if you go up a certain slope using N kilowatt of propulsion to maintain a stable speed, you'd need somewhere in the ballpack of N/2 killowatt of braking power when going down during the full duration (unlike hard braking, which is only for a few seconds).

I'm not following some of your logic (especially the "bad one" part). Unless you start your journey downhill (which does apply to some people, I realize), you should always have room in the battery to store whatever energy you're dissipating—you had to get the energy to accelerate in the first place from somewhere, after all.

Also, peak braking performance is much different than effective regen potential, since you shouldn't need to do hard braking very often.

> I'm not following some of your logic

There are 3 things that limit regenerative braking in its braking capacity at normal speeds:

1. Battery capacity, as you mention. Mostly a concern if you started high, as you mention.

2. Battery charge rate (thermal and lifetime concerns), as you're within or exceeding fast-charge charging rates. Especially important as the battery is likely already operating hot from pulling the load uphill. To give an idea of battery wear, note that a Tesla Model S only allows you to fast-charge a fixed amount on a given battery before you are permanently locked out to not further deteriorate the battery.

3. Charge capacity from the motor controller, which limits total regenerative braking capacity.

The first two are unique to batteries, and become an issue with continuous regenerative braking (such as a long downhill slope with a heavy trailer). Number 2 is likely to be the biggest issue.

Optimal regenerative braking sinks take whatever you throw at them: Either a brake resistor for rheostatic braking, or a connection to the grid which from the perspective of the vehicle is an approximated load of infinite size. Rheostatic braking is only limited by cooling of the brake resistor, which can both operate much hotter than a battery and is much easier to cool.

So why do cars not have brake resistors? Because normal vehicles do not have problems with excessive regenerative braking. Even going downhill, their weight is unlikely to cause severe battery load (although it may fully charge). However, gravity is a bitch when your total weight exceeds 10 tons.

> Also, peak braking performance is much different than effective regen potential, since you shouldn't need to do hard braking very often.

Exactly. The reason I mentioned this is that you noted peak brake numbers, which have no meaning in relation to continuous load capacity, which is much, much lower.

Engine braking with ICE is practical, but is pretty much pointless to compare with regenerative braking capabilities of an electric motor.

Not only does regenerative braking recharge the battery, it is possible to apply entirely arbitrary reverse torque should need be, where an ICE has a pretty fixed resistance.

>where an ICE has a pretty fixed resistance.

That's what the gearbox is for

Apart from inertia on initial clutch-in, there are diminishing returns from increasing the gear ratio when it comes to compression losses.

It's not very useful on gas engines but it is for diesel

Towing capacity tends to be limited by braking/stability, not power.

It would need a compressed air brake system for the trailer, wouldn't it?

Not at this size. Electronic brakes are king when you’re sub-fifth-wheel.

As far as I know, at these trailor weights you have to seperatly brake the trailer itself, which you use compressed air connected to the trailer at the moment. I would guess unless you can brake the trailer electrically as well you would still need it. not sure how many traileros with electric brakes there are.

With the exception of rental trailers and boat trailers electric brakes are literally the standard until you get into trailers big enough that any vehicle you'd tow them with will have air brakes. Electric drum brakes are literally the standard. For the sizes of trailers a truck like this would be expected to tow you would have to go out of your way to find a trailer that does not use electric brakes (once again, boat and rental excepted).

Which is my point, in order to pull "near infinite loads" you most likely reach trailers that require air brakes. e.G. my Range Rover is allowed to tow up to 6.5 tons with the air brake system installed (which it isn't anymore because I never ever need it). And at these loads, the towing vehicle's brakes are much less relevant than the trailer ones.

When he said "near infinite loads" I was thinking more like the Toyota space shuttle stunt which is just something for the internet cheerleaders to jerk off to and doesn't actually say anything about the vehicle's real world performance.

Nobody is realistically thinking this truck can pull more than ~15-20k (and even then it would be a short distance and no hills type of trip because of cooling limitations) with the acceleration/braking distance/handling we expect in this day and age for vehicles towing things on public roads.

The single motor version is 7,500 lbs - almost exactly the same as a Dodge Dakota.

The Tri-motor is 14k lbs, a 2019 F150 is 13,200 lbs. https://www.ford.com/trucks/f150/2019/features/capability/f1...

I stand by my comment, this thing falls between a dodge dakota and a ram 1500.

"The towing capacity of the 2019 Ford F-150 ranges from 5,000 lbs. to 13,200 lbs., depending on how the vehicle is configured.*"

There is exactly one model of F150 that can tow 13,200. The other 47 models [1] mostly tow between 8-10,000 pounds.

[1] - https://www.ford.com/trucks/f150/models/f150-xl/

There’s exactly one model of cybertruck that tows 14k lbs. what’s your point?

My point is it outperforms the top-end F150, just like Elon promised it would, while also beating a Porsche 911 in a drag race. Just like Elon promised it would.

I haven’t done enough research on F-150 but I would guess it outperforms a more expensive F-150 at each of the 3 price points offered.

And that’s before accounting for maintenance and fuel savings.

I am not sure if this will become a status symbol, but I 100% agree that that is the market it is going for.

I know three people who own a pickup (one in commercial construction, one who is a big animal vet, and one who has a horse farm). This does not appear to be designed for those people at all.

However, I think it could appeal to the same people who wanted a hummer. Driving it is just overtly confrontational. It will be fascinating to see whether there is a market for exactly this though, because Tesla is supposed to be environmentally friendly, and the people who bought hummers clearly didn't care about that (at the time, at least).

Re: Hummer H2 and H2 Truck, except it has an option with 2.9s 0-60!!¡ It will be a staple.

By track you mean drag strip because mass and high C of G are going to make this thing difficult to corner/handle.

Why would it have a high centre of gravity? Wouldn't the battery pack be most of the mass and live right at the bottom?

The model S has a ground clearance of 6 inches and a center of gravity of 17.5 inches. This thing has a ground clearance of 16 inches. Assuming similar weight distribution, that's a center of gravity of 27.5 inches. Compare that with:

BMW 3 series: 20 inches Subaru BRZ: 18.1 inches Porsche 911 GT3: 17.9 inches

It has a ground clearance of 16 inches with the suspension at max height. When it lowered itself for the tailgate ramp, it was probably closer to 10 inches off the ground.

The triple motor also has a double stacked battery, so the center of mass is not going to be much further up than the battery is.

Based on the stated ranges of 250, 300 and 500miles (!), I would guess those battery sizes are 75, 100 and 150kWh. I hope the upcoming triple motor model S, will get that 150 battery pack next summer. That would mean 600miles of range for the new model S.

The 500 mile range is 200kWh I believe. There’s a penalty because they are literally stacking a second pack. Probably not enough room to do that in an S, but I’m sure by then the S will see other upgrades.

>This thing has a ground clearance of 16 inches. up to 16 inches, which may (or may not) indicate dynamic suspension

Your wife drives an Audi that can't do better than 0-60 in 6.5 seconds?

Also.. tracks have turns. Low center of gravity helps, but this thing will probably weigh 3-4x as much as a sporty car. Even the Model S has weight comparable to a minivan. My guess is a Subaru BRZ could beat this around many tracks.

This is a cool truck and all, and I hope Tesla makes more exciting designs like this, but I'm tired of people thinking that Teslas are performance cars just because they have torque. Tesla has yet to make anything that interests me at the prices they charge.

>>Your wife drives an Audi that can't do better than 0-60 in 6.5 seconds?

How is that surprising? Unless you go for the really expensive ones with top-spec engines, you're normally looking at 7-8s to 60mph. As an example, the Q3 can be had with 6 different engines, and only the range-topping 45 TFSI breaks the 6.5s barrier at 6.3s to 60mph. All other engines are slower.

A1 can be had with 3 different engines, and the fastest one does 0-60 in 7.7s.

Really, the only Audi where <6.5s to 60mph is "standard" is the A8, with the slowest engine being the 50 TDI that does 0-60 in 5.9s. The second model in line, the A7, starts with a 40TDI that does 0-60 in 8.3 seconds.

>How is that surprising?

It's pretty surprising because the comment seemed to imply that the same Audi might also end up on a track.

> Your wife drives an Audi that can't do better than 0-60 in 6.5 seconds?

Not too surprising. According to [1], the A3 and A4 mostly have 0-60 times worse than 6.5s. You've got to get up to the recent A6's to beat that.

[1]: https://www.zeroto60times.com/vehicle-make/audi-0-60-mph-tim...

The A1s and A3s I see on that list seem to beat 6.5s.

Also it’s a bit weird to compare super entry level 1l audis to this. They’re in a weird segment with lots of compromises.

They don't sell the A1 in the US, and that version is actually the S1 and cost £27k for the base version when launched here in the UK. It's a bit of a one-off they sold hardly any of them.

Again, there are fast A3s but the vast majority sold aren't that quick.

At 6000 pounds and a high CoG, this thing is going to handle worse than most ladder frame trucks. And that's bad.

It's also going to have truly awful front and rear visibility. Long windshields are invariably difficult to live with, creating a hothouse interior on any day without clouds. Once you add appendages to make this legal (side mirrors, rear center brake and tail lights, headlights and turn signals) much of the bold charm of the original concept truck (which is all this is) will be lost.

I agree the design is refreshingly bold. But lots of concept cars in the past initially took fans by storm only to fade into the mainstream by the time they shipped. I'll be very impressed if a design this striking can maintain its visual impact all the way through production.

The tri motor does 0-60 in <2.9

Fair enough, but that still doesn't make it a track car.

it'll smoke most anything on the dragstrip and corners are unamerican so they don't matter.

Love it or hate it seems to be the case here - not many fence sitters. Been reading TMC and FB Tesla Owners group the past hour and reactions are I’d estimate about 80% negative.

Also a truck guy here, and totally concur. I reserved mine within 30 seconds of seeing the site.

I agree and think this could possibly replace many SUVs in suburban areas. 6 person seating is another great selling point for many, just look at all of the third row vehicles like the Honda Pilot. The base price of the Cybertruck is similar to a Pilot. Which would you rather drive?

Agree. I'm in love.

isn't the electric-grid dependency completely antithetical to the ownership of an off-road, off-civilization vehicle ?

(also, honestly this design is a fugly tin can. Elon musk is generally going through a tin can phase (starship etc)). I wouldn't bet on many sales for this, but it's still interesting to see something so different

Mad Max notwithstanding, you can only store gasoline less than a year, so it's not like the alternative is really any less reliant on civilization.

People who truly care about that will likely be using diesel instead.

500 miles is fairly substantial range. I can see this being useful for a very wide variety of use cases, but obviously not those longer-term multi-day excursions into the wilderness.

That said, it is a truck, and maybe someone (perhaps even Tesla) will develop a modular LNG/propane/diesel generator unit you can put into the back of the truck for purposes of range extension. I realize this is inefficient, not environmentally friendly, and going in the opposite direction of what the electric car is supposed to do, but its also only applicable in those extreme edge cases where you need to be away from the grid for days or weeks.

You can also easily google that photograph of a Mitsubishi MiEV being charged on the roadside by a Honda gasoline generator. That needs to be scale up a little bit, but it's possible to charge electric cars like that - inefficient, but enables driving out of the range of the electric grid.

However, 99 % of drivers of a "truck" like this will be commuting between a suburban home and an office.

For the one lap until it overheats, or until this pig needs to hit an apex.

It looks like something my son would have designed when he was 5.

As someone looking at a Tacoma TRD Pro or Ram Power Wagon this thing just shattered my midsize vs 2500 internal debate.

Your wife races her Audi at a track?

Really weird if you read that post and that was your only take-away.

> This is the suburban status item of 2022.

Yeah I don’t think so. Trucks are not suburban status items. This is more like the El Camino of 2022.

> Trucks are not suburban status items.

Have you ever been to Texas?

Or pretty much anywhere outside of urban centers... and even there, many in the South, West, and Midwest US have giant trucks (big enough they don't fit in a standard garage) in their urban centers.

They're definitely a suburban status item in much of the West of the US.

> suburban status items

I have found the single stupidest thing in this thread.

Only thing that is missing from this comment is a disclaimer about you holding TSLA stock.

Hacker News never fails to amuse.

Will they be able to survive until then with this though? Because I seriously doubt it.

$100 initial deposit is to show wall St demand. That will keep borrowing costs down.

Oh boy, you aren't going to make friends here. Upvoting you just to mitigate the damage.

Is this satire or are rich car people really this insufferable? This may be the best/worst comment I've ever seen here. The level of status projecting and suburban truck guy cringe is through the roof.

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