Elon Musk's insane-looking electric pickup can be reserved for $100 and production is promised in late 2021. Are you in?
The Tesla Cybertruck is finally a reality. OK, so not quite, but we know there's at least one of them in the world. But Elon Musk is promising to deliver this unconventional all-electric full-size truck surprisingly soon, and the company is already taking reservations. Whether you're actually interested in parking one of these iconoclastic, triangle-shaped pickups in your driveway, or you're just curious as to how the order process, here's what you need to know.
Like the order process for the Model Y crossover SUV, which isn't in production yet, navigating the reservation system is dead simple and only takes a couple of minutes. First, you click over to Tesla's Cybertruck microsite, where you'll be presented with three choices:
Tesla hasn't yet detailed battery sizes, but during the presentation, a max-range figure of over 500 miles was disclosed for the tri-motor model, while the dual-motor version was listed at 300-plus miles and the single-motor base model at a still-healthy 250-plus miles.
For now, the only Cybertruck option listed is Self-Driving, priced at a heady $7,000. As the site notes, "Selecting Full-Self Driving today will secure your price as it increases in the future." (Despite the option title and Musk's bold claims for the tech, clicking on the "Learn more" button reveals a lengthy disclaimer that says the tech's current version requires supervision and does not enable autonomy.)
Still onboard? You'll have to plunk down your name, email address, phone number, credit card number and agree to pay a $100 deposit. The funds will be taken immediately, but Tesla says the deposit is fully refundable. Note: By placing the order, you're consenting to allow Tesla to save your credit card.
By clicking "Place Order," you also agree to Tesla's Cybertruck Agreement, Supercharger Fair Use Agreement, and Customer Privacy Agreement, which is all fairly boilerplate stuff that should be familiar to Tesla customers. The salient points in the first document are that your vehicle's configuration "will be confirmed with you at a later date," including Tesla providing the "Final Price Sheet" as one's delivery date looms.
Tesla's website says you can cancel a Cybertruck preorder at any time right up until delivery, at which point reservation holders are entitled to a full refund of their preorder payments.
"Until your final configuration is matched to a vehicle, you may make changes to your Vehicle Configuration," Tesla says. In other words, if you're curious about the Tesla Cybertruck but you're not sure how you want to configure yours (or maybe you're not even sure if you want one, but think you might be interested with more time and research), there doesn't seem to be much of a downside to plunking down a Benjamin to hedge your bets and get on the waiting list. After all, Tesla says you're entitled to get your deposit money back right up until delivery.
Speaking of delivery, when can you expect your Tesla Cybertruck? According to the Silicon Valley automaker's website, "you will be able to complete your configuration as production nears in late 2021." However, if you want the most expensive -- and presumably the most powerful -- tri-motor, all-wheel-drive Cybertruck, you're looking at an estimated production date of late 2022. Take all of this with several grains of salt (perhaps a whole shaker), of course. Elon Musk's team doesn't exactly have a sterling record of sticking to announced timeframes, though they do seem to be getting better about doing so.
It is not immediately clear where Tesla plans to build the Cybertruck, which other colors it might be available in (stainless steel is notoriously hard to paint) or which other options will be available.
Despite showing an electric ATV during the Cybertruck reveal as a special "one more thing" surprise, Tesla hasn't indicated whether it will produce the recreational vehicle or whether it will offer preorders.
Once you've completed your Cybertruck order, you'll receive a confirmation screen with a tracking number and an adorable little owl. Voila! You're all set. Now all you have to do is wait...