LIFESTYLE

Tesla’s 1st electric pickup has rolled off the assembly line, company says

Jul 15, 2023, 10:24 AM | Updated: 10:50 am

Tesla says its first production Cybertruck electric pickup has rolled off the assembly line, nearly two years behind the original schedule.

The company tweeted a photo on Saturday showing scores of workers in helmets and yellow vests surrounding the truck.

“First Cybertruck built at Giga Texas!” Tesla tweeted, including a cowboy hat-wearing emoji. Owner Elon Musk retweeted the post.

Musk unveiled the truck in late 2019, and Tesla had said production would start in late 2021, although the company has since cautioned that production would begin slowly and in smaller numbers than Tesla’s other vehicles.

With its wedge shape and stainless-steel body — which Tesla calls the exoskeleton — the Cybertruck looks nothing like a traditional pickup. Some analysts have panned it as a niche product that won’t have broad appeal.

Musk said in April that the company expected to deliver the first truck probably in the July-through-September quarter. He said that as with other new products, production would start slowly and then speed up.

“It takes time to get the manufacturing line going,” he said, “and this is really a very radical product. It’s not made in the way that other cars are made. So let’s see.”

The truck’s 2019 unveiling veered off course when a window that was touted as unbreakable was spider-cracked when hit by a big metal ball, which prompted an expletive from Musk.

Tesla originally said it would make three versions of the truck, ranging from about $40,000 to $70,000. Later the company removed prices from the page where customers can decide whether to plunk down $100 and place an order.

Competitors have rushed into the electric truck market, including the Ford F-150 Lightning and Rivian Automotive’s R1T. Both look like conventional pickups.

Tesla is scheduled to report second-quarter financial results on July 19.

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