After years of promising an electric pickup that could outperform offerings from the Detroit 3, Tesla CEO Elon Musk on Thursday revealed an angular vehicle that failed to withstand a 25-minute presentation.
Musk promised exhilarating performance out of the so-called Cybertruck, with acceleration from 0 to 60 mph (97 kph) in 2.9 seconds and a top speed of 130 mph (209 kph).
But the pickup could use some more testing before production is slated to begin in late 2021: The truck was described as having windows made from armored glass. But its side window broke twice during an on-stage strength demonstration when chief designer Franz von Holzhausen threw a metal ball at it to test its durability.
The four-door, six-seat pickup starts at $39,900 in the U.S. with a base range of more than 250 miles (402 km). The most expensive variant starts at $69,900 and will get more than 500 miles range, Tesla said. By comparison, the current maximum range of a Tesla car is 370 miles for its long-range Model S sedan.
It has a towing capacity of more than 14,000 lbs (454 kg) and a payload of up to 3,500 lbs.
Following the reveal, Tesla immediately began taking online pre-orders for a deposit of just $100.
"We need sustainable energy now. If we don't have a pickup truck, we can't solve it. The top 3 selling vehicles in America are pickup trucks. To solve sustainable energy, we have to have a pickup truck," Musk said at a launch event in Los Angeles.