Elon Musk has mentioned that the Tesla Cybertruck’s production version would be extremely similar to the all-electric pickup truck’s controversial prototype from 2019. While this may largely be the case, Musk has hinted at some new features that would be included in the production Cybertruck. Apart from updated door handles and rear-wheel steering capabilities, for example, Musk also hinted at “other great things” coming for the vehicle.
A recently published patent application from Tesla has now hinted at a couple more updates that may be coming to the Cybertruck, at least on the design front. The patent, titled “Automotive Glass Structure Having Feature Lines and Related Method of Manufacture,” describes a way to form extremely durable glass structures with aggressive curves and folds. Using such a technique, Tesla stated that it could create components like windshields with very aggressive feature lines that would otherwise not be possible with conventional glass-forming methods.
The patent application’s illustrations showcased how the system would be used in a vehicle such as the Cybertruck. One of the images in the patent featured the far left and right side of the Cybertruck’s windshield having aggressive feature lines that make the all-electric pickup truck even more futuristic and CGI-esque. This is quite different from the windshield used on the prototype Cybertruck, which seemed completely flat.
“The first glass structure 602A may represent a windshield positioned on the vehicle and formed according to the techniques described herein. In some embodiments, the first glass structure 602A may be multi-layer… Thus, the first glass structure 602 A may have feature lines (e.g., facets) 606A-606B. As an example, these feature lines 600A-600B may have radii of curvatures of between 2 mm and 5 cm. In some embodiments, the feature lines 600A-600B may represent an angle of between 45-60 degrees, or 50-75 degrees, and so on.”
Tesla’s unique glass patent application is not limited to the exterior of vehicles. Still using the Cybertruck as an example, Tesla highlighted that its glass-forming patent could also be used to create the all-electric pickup truck’s dashboard, which was made of recycled paper composite materials in the prototype. Tesla’s patent application showed that the Cybertruck’s dashboard could be made of glass instead, giving the vehicle an aesthetically pleasing interior accent. A film layer used with the folded glass would provide the dashboard with additional durability, ensuring that the component does not shatter during impacts.
“Figure 7 illustrates an example of an interior 700 of a vehicle, such as the vehicle 600 described above. The interior 700 includes a glass dash 702 with a feature line 704. As described above, the feature line 704 may have a radius of curvature of between 2mm and 5cm. In some embodiments, the feature line 704 may represent an angle of between 45-60 degrees, or 50-75 degrees, and so on.
“The glass dash 702 may be formed according to the techniques described above. For example, the glass dash 702 may be formed as described in Figure 2. Thus, a single layer of glass may be used and locally heated to form the feature line 704. In some embodiments, a film or layer may be positioned below the glass dash 702. For example, the film or layer may be used to present a visual design and/or may be used to ensure the glass does not shatter (e.g., a safety or security film).”
The Cybertruck’s design has already been finalized, and it remains to be seen if the folded glass components outlined in the patent application would actually make it to the all-electric pickup truck’s production version. Tesla watchers would likely not need to wait for long, however, as the company has noted that the Cybertruck should enter its beta stage by the end of the year, with production starting at Giga Texas next year.