Tesla has officially started delivering the first units of its new Cybertruck to customers after a long delay, due to difficulties the company faced at the production level, coinciding with disruptions in supply chains caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
On Thursday, Tesla CEO Elon Musk personally delivered the first cars to their owners during a ceremony in Austin, Texas, in an event that was broadcast on platform X, owned by the American billionaire.
The strikingly designed vehicle, unconventional in appearance, is made of shiny stainless steel with few to no curves. Musk says the design was inspired by a car that transformed into a submarine in the 1977 James Bond film “The Spy Who Loved Me.”
Tesla has launched 3 versions of the Cybertruck, with prices varying according to their technical specifications.
The highest-end version is called Cyberbeast, starting at $99,990. The company’s official website shows that its approximate range reaches 320 miles, with an acceleration time of 2.6 seconds (from 0 to 100 kilometers), and a top speed of 130 miles per hour (about 209 kilometers per hour).
This version generates 845 horsepower and 10,296 pound-feet of torque and is capable of towing a payload of about 5 tons. The delivery process for this version will begin in 2024.
The next version is the ALL-WHEEL DRIVE, starting at $79,990, with an approximate range of 340 miles. It can reach 100 kilometers per hour in 4.1 seconds, generating 600 horsepower, and 7,435 pound-feet of torque. Delivery of this version is also set to begin in 2024.
The cheapest version is the REAR-WHEEL DRIVE, available from 2025, priced at $60,990, with a range of 250 miles and an acceleration time of 6.5 seconds.
In 2019, Musk said the car would cost $40,000 and that the latest version would be capable of traveling 500 miles or more on a single charge, but current figures differ.
Cybertruck, Tesla’s first new model in about 4 years, is a critical stage for its reputation as an innovative vehicle manufacturer. The sector as a whole is suffering from declining demand for electric cars and increasing competition from other companies.
Cybertruck is also essential for generating sales but not to the extent of the Models 3 and Y offered by the company.
Entering the market two years later than scheduled, Cybertruck competes in the highly lucrative and narrow truck market, against the likes of F150 Lightning, the electric version of Ford’s best-selling truck in the United States, R1T from Rivian, and the electric version of the famous Hummer truck from General Motors.
The starting price of the R1T is $73,000, while the F-150 Lightning starts at about $50,000, and the larger, more powerful Hummer EV costs more than $96,000.
Last month, Musk said: “We have dug our own grave with Cybertruck,” warning that it will take a year to 18 months to make the car a significant contributor to Tesla’s cash flow.
Tesla’s stock fell by more than 2% in extended trading, after closing the session down 1.6% at $240.08 per share.
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