Elon Musk unveiled the Tesla Cybertruck this week to amazed audiences worldwide – some are hailing it as an instant classic of design, while others see it as nothing more than a bad joke.
The editors of CyberPunks.com had almost forgotten about the 2017 announcement of Tesla’s Cybertruck before it had its windows spectacularly broken in front of a live audience and thousands of online viewers in late November.
Elon Musk had definitely given us a heads up, though, stating in 2018, “I really want something that’s like super-futuristic cyberpunk.” With its blocky good(?) looks, the Cybertruck’s inspiration is obvious. It would be at home cruising on the streets of Deckard’s 2019 Los Angeles, as it will be on the Utopian boulevards of the real 2019 Los Angeles.
Even for playboy multi-billionaire tech geniuses, sometimes things just go wrong. During the presentation, Elon Musk looked to be having a bad week, given that his rocket had also blown up on the launchpad after a failed pressurization test. At Musk’s prompting, Tesla Chief Designer Franz von Holzhausen smashed one window, and then another. “Oops. We’ll fix it in post.”
What might have been yet another standard reveal – scrutinized by Tesla fanboys and fangirls but ignored by everyone else, was now an event. Musk’s presumed miscalculation guaranteed an audience of millions.
It has been covered by every news network, complete with handy visuals, because a standard corporate unveil is now a news story – clumsy CEO wrecks own vehicle. It’s not relegated to the tech or motoring pages any more
Facebook is flooded with .GIFs and with memes – chuckling at Ol’ Musky’s clumsiness and mocking the Cybertruck’s design. It has entered the public consciousness in a bigger way than anything Tesla has shown off since the Model S.
Granted, most of the memes are ridiculing the Cybertruck, the on-stage accident, and Musk personally. But any publicity is good publicity. Right?
The Cybertruck is now firmly in the public consciousness, and buyers are taking a serious look at its many virtues. Hundreds of thousands are committing to pay a minimum of $39,900 for the basic model with a 250 mile range, and a staggering $69,000 for the tri-motor model, which can zip from 0-60 in under three seconds.
In the days after the Cybertruck’s unveil, more than 200,000 pre-orders were made, with a value of over $11 billion – and those figures can only grow before its eventual launch in 2021. For comparison, Americans purchased 896,764 F-Series trucks in 2018.
If the Cybertruck’s pre-orders keep growing, it could, within a few years, become the most popular type of vehicle in the United States; however, there’s always the chance that, despite its retro-futuristic look, it may remain a kooky novelty, and something best forgotten.
One thing is for sure – the Cybertruck is going to be a meme goldmine for quite some time. See below for a collection of our favorites in circulation: