Wild price inflation and a blocky design: Elon Musk's $60,990 Cybertruck is a totally ludicrous idea

  • Tesla's Cybertruck still makes no sense.

  • Elon Musk livestreamed a delivery event for the pickup truck on Thursday.

  • It remains a boy fantasy for most people.

The Cybertruck is finally here. How it makes sense for Tesla, Elon Musk, or people's daily commutes is still anyone's guess.

In a livestream from the Texas Gigafactory on Thursday, Musk led a delivery event for the electric stainless-steel enigma of a pickup truck that marks Tesla's first new vehicle launch since the Model Y announcement in 2019.

Though the Cybertruck was also first announced in 2019, it has suffered from four years of production woes, compounded by supply-chain disruptions during the pandemic.

Its angular body has been a nightmare to design. The materials are expensive. The mass market demand for something that looks straight out of "Blade Runner" has been hard to project. Still, Musk gave it his showmanship best.

During the event, a video was shown of a Cybertruck towing a Porsche 911 in a race against a Porsche 911 where the winner apparently was… the Cybertruck. That feat was helped by the Cybertruck's ability to accelerate from 0-60mph in 2.6 seconds.

Another video showed a gunman firing at the truck with everything from a Tommy Gun to an MP5-SD submachine gun to demonstrate the bulletproof nature of the vehicle. Whether this was insinuating that a Cybertruck owner is more likely to be shot at was unclear.

"I think it's our best product, I think it's the most unique thing on the road, and, finally, the future will look like the future," Musk said during the event.

And yet, the Cybertruck still remains one of Musk's most ludicrous ideas. That's saying something for someone who took a product plan for another vehicle from the movie "Spaceballs."

First off, this thing is expensive. Musk initially claimed in 2019 that the Cybertruck would start at $39,900. On Thursday, that starting price jumped to $60,990, according to Tesla's website.

The top-end "cyberbeast," coming in 2024 with 845 horsepower and a battery range of 340 miles, is priced at $99,990. Though the Model X Plaid is more expensive, the Cybertruck is already being priced way above what it was initially planned to cost.

"I've been waiting for this for four years. I was disappointed today in the price," Deepwater Asset Management's Gene Munster told CNBC after Tesla's livestream. "I have a reservation; I don't know if I'm going to get it."

The response from other consumers is expected to be tepid, too. Morgan Stanley has predicted just 50 deliveries of the Cybertruck this year, with a modest jump to 30,000 next year.

The Tesla rival Rivian, which delivered its R1T pickup truck to a customer for the first time in September 2021, managed just 15,564 vehicle deliveries in the three months to the end of September. In other words, making this type of vehicle successful is hard right now.

To be sure, Musk does seem to have an inkling of this.

"We dug our own grave with Cybertruck," he said on a recent Tesla earnings call. "Special products that come along once in a long while are just incredibly difficult to bring to market, to reach volume, to be prosperous. It's fundamental to the nature of the newness."

Then there's the puzzle of the most striking feature of the Cybertruck: its design. On its website, Tesla describes the vehicle as being "built for any planet," thanks to its durable and rugged design.

Meanwhile, over on Reddit's dedicated forum for would-be Cybertruck fans: "Let's be real here," one user wrote. "The truck looks absolutely awful. This thing is being marketed to urban yuppies with very little real need for a pickup, but who just want the 'ooo factor' it offers because it looks like a Delorean.

"People in states like Texas, and Wyoming that have the highest consumers for pickup trucks are not interested in something that looks like it came out of a video game. This thing will not sell well."

The Cybertruck is the future? That's delulu.

Read the original article on Business Insider