Tesla Cybertruck review

Tesla Cybertruck review

Tesla Cybertruck

I got my hands on a Tesla Cybertruck for a week. Being from Canada, I haven’t had the opportunity to test the electric pickup truck until now.

So, for those who care, here’s my Tesla Cybertruck review .

My more detailed review is below, but here’s a quick TLDR:

I am particularly impressed by the technology inside the Cybertruck. It drives amazingly well. I was particularly impressed by the drive-by-wire system, which makes the truck drives like a video game. The rear-steering makes it turn on a dime. Also, Tesla should be commended for being the first to push to move to a 48-volt architecture.

However, there are some downsides. The novel design has forced Tesla to make some compromises, like the huge A-pillars resulting in a bling spot, the tonneau cover resulting in a useless rear-view mirror. Some of the downsides also seem to have to do with Tesla’s belief that self-driving is just around the corner – even though it doesn’t even have Autopilot right now. Finally, the charging capacity is subpar compared to Tesla’s other vehicles and competitors.

Attention Grabber

One of the first things you will notice when driving the Cybertruck is the attention you are getting. I’ve driven rare supercars that would get much less attention than this pickup truck.

Most of the time, it’s great. People come up to you and want to ask questions, which I am happy to answer unless I’m on a schedule. However, it can also be a pain. Plenty of people don’t ask before taking pictures and have no problem photographing you while you are inside the truck.

But more importantly, it can be dangerous. I had people drive erratically to try to catch up to me to take pictures of the vehicle while they were driving. Please don’t do that. It’s stupidly dangerous.

Either way, it likely not going to be a problem for long. It is a very novel vehicle right now, but Tesla is ramping up production and plans to make hundreds of thousands of Cybertrucks per year. Once that’s the case, I assume that the fascination and excitement will die down a bit and owners will be able to travel with less attention.

Things my girlfriend said about the Cybertruck

My girlfriend might be the Cybertruck’s biggest fan. Here are a few things I caught her casually saying during our week with the truck (yes, I actually kept a list cause I couldn’t believe how excited she was about it):

  • All other cars can go home, this is the only vehicle that matters
  • It’s the perfect car.
  • Cars should have always look like that.
  • If you don’t like this car, you don’t like the future.
  • *sees people checking the truck from a distance* please make the truck fart.
  • It is effing beautiful, I have nothing else to say.

For context and to be fair, she doesn’t drive, in fact, she has never driven a vehicle. She is a city girl without a driver’s license. She doesn’t know anything about cars. I’m not sure she could name you another car with a gun to her head, but she is a very artistic person who appreciates the “cinematographic look” of the Cybertruck’s design.

If anything, she is proof that some people do like the design.

Cybertruck’s Design

Personally, I’m still ambivalent on the design. I commend Tesla for departing from traditional vehicle and pickup designs and trying something novel.

Sometimes, I think it looks quite sharp, but I also can’t really argue with the people who say it looks like a dumpster.

Considering it is objective, I’ll focus instead on what Tesla’s novel design for the Cybertruck enables and what it forced Tesla to do.

In some ways, I feel like the Cybertruck is a great example of a product engineered from its design. I wouldn’t be surprised if the vehicle program were born from a Tesla designer going up to CEO Elon Musk with the Cybertruck’s design and Musk going: “I love it, let’s figure out how to build this.” Then Tesla’s engineers and designers had to make this thing a reality

There are quite a few characteristics in support of that. For example, Tesla first claimed that the Cybertruck would be built with an exosketlon and its website still mentions that today. However, teardowns and pictures of the truck’s body makes clear that you have to stretch the definition of “exoskeleton” to its very limit to still call it that. The Cybertruck’s built is much closer to a traditional unibody than anything else.

Tesla does have a point that the body panels add to the structural integrity of the vehicle, but they are certainly not the main structural part of the pickup. The panels are also thinner than originally planned.

Nonetheless, Tesla built the first stainless steel vehicle since the DeLorean and that’s cool by itself.

Many people like the idea of a rugged truck that doesn’t rust, doesn’t ding easy, and that’s it, but there are some downsides too.

It does get dirty with pollen and fingerprints quite easy. With the clean look with sharp lines, Tesla didn’t want any door handles. Instead of going with an embedded door handle that pops out, automatically like Model S, or manually like in Model 3/Y, Tesla instead went with a button that pops the door open and then you have to reach inside of it to pull it fully open – similar to the system in the Mustand Mach-E.

I feel like Tesla could have implemented that better. It could have had auto presenting door, it’s a $100,000 vehicle after all, but it could have also implemented simpler things to make the experience better.

Something like a rubber piece inside the door where you grab it would have been great to avoid touching a steel panel and could be use to swing the door close without having to touch the outside.

The ridiculously big windshield wiper in a vertical resting position is also something that was forced by the Cybertruck’s design.

If you want a straight line from the front end to the roof, you are going to lose the traditional indentation between the hood and windshield where you can hide the windshield wiper.

Personally, I don’t have much of problem with the wiper other than the fact that the auto mode works as bad as in other Tesla vehicles with vision-based automatic wipers.

The design also results in an extremely short overhang in the front, which means a relatively small front trunk or frunk. I was still able to fit two carry-on luggage after a few tries .

That’s certainly an area where the Cybertruck is lacking over the competition with Rivian R1 and the Ford Lightning both having much bigger frunks.

But the Cybertruck’s frunk is still useful and with the tonneau cover coming standard, the bed is still useful for everyday cargo that you want to keep clean.

Speaking of the bed, that’s probably where the Cybertruck’s design comes together the best.

The sides provide better aerodynamic performance, and you have the tonneau cover, which is super satisfying to use, as you can see in my video review, and also helps with aerodynamic performance.

At 6′ by 4′, the bed is useful, but the main downside is the shape of the sides, which means that some off-the-shelve pickup accessories won’t work and you will have to work with Tesla more to get some roof and bed accessories.

My favorite feature in the bed is the power outlets (two 120v and one 240v):

It is conveniently located on the left side of the bed near the tailgate.

Moving to the interior design, that’s where I think that Tesla had to compromise a lot to make the exterior shape of the Cybertruck work.

It is conveniently located on the left side of the bed near the tailgate.

Moving to the interior design, that’s where I think that Tesla had to compromise a lot to make the exterior shape of the Cybertruck work.

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