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Tesla's Cybertruck May Not Actually Happen

Has Elon Musk been trolling everyone when it comes to his company's odd-looking take on an electric vehicle (EV) truck?

Tesla's TSLA Cybertruck has always seemed like a bit of a goof and Tesla CEO Elon Musk has never been above playing with people. The company has a website for Cybertruck where people can reserve one of the vehicles for a refundable $100 deposit -- essentially no commitment for a vehicle that won't be cheap, according to pricing data from Kelly Blue Book.

The base price for a single-motor, rear-wheel-drive Tesla Cybertruck is $39,900, not including destination charges. The Dual Motor all-wheel drive version starts at $49,900 and the top of the line Tri Motor all-wheel-drive Cybertruck costs $69,900. Unlike many other electric cars, Tesla’s are no longer eligible for federal tax incentives.

That's a price that's in line with top-tier pickup trucks, but the very low deposit makes any reservations the company has dubious at best. And, questions also remain as to when exactly, if ever, the vehicle will enter production as Tesla has removed the 2022 arrival date from its Cybertruck website.

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Tesla's Cybertruck remains just an idea.

Tesla's Cybertruck remains just an idea.

Tesla Cybertruck Delivery Has Been a Moving Target

Musk promising delivery dates has always been something that even Tesla fans have to take with a grain of salt. In August of 2021, Tesla promised a 2021 delivery for Cybertruck.

“We’ll make a few deliveries of the Cybertruck in 2021, but volume production is set for next year. You will be able to complete your configuration as production nears in 2022," the company posted,

Now, all mentions of dates have been removed from the website. Tesla does, however, have an earnings call set for January 26, and Musk has said to expect a "product roadmap" on that date.

Musk first announced the Cybertruck in 2019. It was expected to be produced at the company's Austin, Texas facility but it remains unclear where the company stands in the production cycle and whether a 2022 delivery will happen or, frankly, whether Cybertruck will happen at all.

Musk's Cybertruck Has Always Been Controversial

Cybertruck has been controversial since it was first announced, It's an unconventional design and even Musk has cast doubt on whether it would succeed..

Legendary automotive designer Frank Stephenson has also been a critic. The designer, who has held top positions at McLaren, BMW, Ferrari, Maserati, Alfa Romeo and other carmakers, posted his thoughts in a YouTube video about a year after Cybertruck was introduced.

It’s our job as designers to not guess what the future is going to look like, but to decide what the future will look like. In every OEM project that I’ve worked on, my responsibility has been to create a car that will still feel fresh at least 10 years into the future. My first concern with the Cybertruck is how dated that it’s going to feel in a very short timespan.

This design for me reveals that Elon Musk’s genius is of course sturdily rooted in the future but without a strong enough grasp on the past. If technological progress does not march into the future hand in hand with nature then it is not progress at all and — given Musk’s dedication to a collaboration with nature in his use of electric vehicles — makes this design feel even more dissonant against the future that we ought to be creating,

That's not a damning commentary and it gives Musk the benefit of the doubt that Cybertruck will actually happen. That may be a leap given the reality of what has actually happened.

Currently, Tesla's Cybertruck has a webpage that's a single page and the company has done little other than give vague release dates that it then pushes back. Musk has promised a roadmap on Jan. 26, but his past history of being willing to troll/have fun with his company's fanbase and his social media followers suggests that the Cybertruck will only actually be a thing when the company actually starts making deliveries.

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