Tesla Cybertruck unlikely to come to UK, but a smaller version could

Tesla’s all-electric stainless steel Cybertruck pick-up promises a range of over 500 miles and a 0–62mph time of 2.9 seconds, and while it's unlikely to come the UK, a smaller "Wolverine" version might.

After the dust had settled following the unveiling of the Tesla Cybertruck, two of the first questions many asked were: a) how will a vehicle that is nearly six metres long and over two metres wide work in countries with smaller roads than North America? And, b) how will such an angular vehicle make it past stringent European type approval, and pedestrian impact tests in particular?

If Tesla boss Elon Musk's latest comments are anything to go by, however, the answer to both of those questions is: it won't.

Speaking during a Q&A session at Tesla's annual Battery Day conference, Musk said that while orders for the Cybertruck are "gigantic" at well over half a million, and he predicted production capacity to be "at least 250,000 to 300,000 a year, maybe more", he also indicated the vehicle may well not make it past regulators outside the United States.

"We are designing the Cybertruck to meet the American spec," Musk said, "because if you try to design a car to meet the superset of all global requirements, it basically, you can’t make the cybertruck, it’s impossible."

Saying the Cybertruck "really is designed for the American market" as this is the world's largest market for large pick-up trucks, Musk said Tesla is considering building a smaller version of the Cybertruck for countries without such wide roads. 

"We’ll probably make an international version of Cybertruck that will be kinda smaller, kind of like a tight Wolverine package", Musk said. While no further details were given of what he meant by "Wolverine", one of the heavy-lifting robots at Tesla's factory in Fremont, California, is named after the X-Men character. 

Musk promised that  any international Cybertruck that may emerge will "still be cool", adding: "But it’ll be smaller, because you just can’t make a giant truck like that for most markets." 

Tesla Cybertruck: prices, specs and release date

The all-new Tesla Cybertruck is an angular, stainless-steel-bodied utility vehicle with bulletproof glass and a claimed maximum towing capacity in excess of six tonnes. When it goes on sale towards the end of 2021, it’ll be priced from $39,900 in the US.  

American customers can pre-order a Tesla Cybertruck now by placing a fully-refundable deposit of $100. Following the pick-up’s launch, Tesla’s CEO, Elon Musk announced on Twitter that more than 250,000 customers had placed orders for the new model. Then he released a video showing the Tesla Cybertruck pulling a Ford F150, America's best-selling pick-up truck, that's caused some controversy online.

• New Tesla Cybertruck ride review

Despite looking like a prop from a sci-fi movie, the Cybertruck will do everything the most popular US market pick-ups can do, according to Musk. He claimed that it can carry a payload of up to 1,587kg and tow up to 6,350kg. It also comes with lockable 2,832-litre load bed, which can carry items up to 1,981mm long.

Musk promises the pick-up will be handy off-road, too, with 406mm of ground clearance, an approach angle 35 degrees and a departure angle of 28 degrees – which is better than the current Ford F-150. There’s also a range of new traction control settings which have been designed to simulate mechanical locking differentials.

Tesla Cybertruck: versions

The range-topping Tesla Cybertruck will be priced from $69,900 in the US (around £54,000) and will feature a tri-motor, all-wheel-drive electric powertrain and a large battery pack, adapted from the Model X SUV. It will boast a 0–60mph time of 2.9 seconds, a top speed of 130mph and a claimed maximum range of 500 miles.

Entry-level, Single Motor, rear-wheel-drive Cybertrucks will start from $39,900 in the States (around £31,000). It has a claimed 0–60mph time of 6.5 seconds and a top speed of 110mph. However it’ll be fitted with a smaller battery pack than the flagship model, which means it will only cover 250 miles between charges and can only tow up to 3,402kg.

Sitting between the two extremes will be a Dual Motor, all-wheel-drive variant, priced from $49,900 (around £39,000). It will offer a claimed range of “more than 300 miles,” a 0–60mph time of 4.5 seconds and a maximum towing capacity of 4,536kg.

Tesla Cybertruck: chassis, platform and toughness

Like the Tesla Model X, the Cybertruck rides on air suspension which allows the rear of the pick-up to be lowered to make loading and unloading easier. The pick-up is also fitted with a retractable ramp, which was demonstrated with a rebadged and rebodied Yamaha ATV driving across the stage and into the bed.

There’s still a considerable amount of conjecture over the Cybertruck’s angular design, with many publications remaining doubtful over whether it will pass the pedestrian safety aspect of US crash regulations. 

However, Musk claims the Cybertruck will be the toughest pick-up on the market, thanks to a body made of ultra-hard 30X cold-rolled stainless steel. Tesla’s design boss, Franz von Holzhausen, demonstrated the strength of the pick-up’s body by attempting to dent one of its doors with a sledgehammer.

The Cybertruck will also be fitted with Tesla Armour Glass – an ultra-strong polymer-layered composite, which Elon Musk described as “transparent metal.” Its on-stage demonstration didn’t go as smoothly as the bodywork’s as, when Holzhausen threw a heavy metal ball at the pick-up’s front and rear door glass, both windows cracked. Musk admitted to the crowd that there was “room for improvement.”

Tesla Cybertruck: interior design and dimensions

Inside, there are two rows of three seats, with the centre front seat folding flat to make an armrest. And as is usual for Tesla, the dash features just a single 17-inch landscape touchscreen sitting on top of what looked like a marble-effect panel stretching the entire width of the car with no other visible controls. 

The steering wheel is similar to that in the Tesla Roadster with its flat bottom and cut-off top. The rear-view mirror is a screen, rather than a conventional glass unit, which uses a feed from a high-definition camera in the tailgate, while the roof glass roof extends back over the rear passengers who get a view of the steel-clad load bed.

As with all US-market pick-ups, the Tesla Cybertruck is big, measuring 5,885mm in length, 2,027mm wide and 1905mm high. That won’t shouldn’t stop Tesla bringing the car to the UK, though, with production of the Single Motor and Dual Motor cars set to start towards the end of 2021 and Tri Motor production starting a year later.

Do you like Tesla Cybertruck? Let us know in the comments section...

Most Popular

Driving test update to preserve the manual gearbox
Dacia Duster gear lever
News

Driving test update to preserve the manual gearbox

With more drivers learning in autos and electric cars, the DVSA is looking to update the driving test so people can still drive manuals in future
16 Jun 2021
UN report highlights ethical problems with electric cars
Electric car charging
News

UN report highlights ethical problems with electric cars

Analysis reveals lithium refining takes 65 per cent of Chilean region’s water, while 40,000 child miners dig for cobalt in DRC
14 Jun 2021
Fiat 500 vs MINI Electric vs Honda e
Fiat 500 vs Honda e vs MINI Electric
Car group tests

Fiat 500 vs MINI Electric vs Honda e

The new Fiat 500, MINI Electric and Honda e are three retro-inspired electric superminis - but which is best?
19 Jun 2021
New Audi Q4 e-tron 2021 review
Audi Q4 e-tron 2021  front
Audi Q4 e-tron

New Audi Q4 e-tron 2021 review

We get involved with the new all-electric Audi Q4 e-tron SUV on UK roads for the first time
17 Jun 2021
Ineos Grenadier prototype 2022 review
Ineos Grenadier prototype
Ineos Grenadier 4x4

Ineos Grenadier prototype 2022 review

Can the Ineos Grenadier really fill the mud-splattered void left by the old Land Rover Defender? We take a first drive in a prototype to find out...
15 Jun 2021
Fan-designed Ford Puma ST Gold Edition revealed
Fan-designed Ford Puma ST Gold Edition
Ford Puma

Fan-designed Ford Puma ST Gold Edition revealed

Ford unveils a special edition Puma ST, with a black and gold colour scheme chosen by Ford fans over social media
18 Jun 2021
New Nissan Qashqai 2021 review
Nissan Qashqai 2021
Nissan Qashqai

New Nissan Qashqai 2021 review

We get behind the wheel of the larger, more comfortable and higher-tech Nissan Qashqai SUV in the UK
16 Jun 2021
New 2021 Vauxhall Astra to offer plug-in hybrid power
Vauxhall Astra render
Vauxhall Astra

New 2021 Vauxhall Astra to offer plug-in hybrid power

The new Vauxhall Astra will get a plug-in hybrid powertrain and a more premium image - here’s how it could look
17 Jun 2021
New 2021 Hyundai Tucson N-Line hybrid and PHEV on sale now
Hyundai Tuscon N Line - front
Hyundai Tucson

New 2021 Hyundai Tucson N-Line hybrid and PHEV on sale now

Hyundai names price for new Tucson N-Line hybrid duo with plug-in offering 38 miles of electric running
18 Jun 2021
New Skoda Enyaq iV 2021 review
Skoda Enyaq iV 80 Sportline - front
Skoda Enyaq

New Skoda Enyaq iV 2021 review

The new Skoda Enyaq iV is the Czech firm’s first bespoke electric car and we've tested the full range on UK roads
10 Jun 2021
Tesla Model 3 police car all set for evaluation by UK emergency services
Tesla Model 3 police car - front
News

Tesla Model 3 police car all set for evaluation by UK emergency services

Tesla hopes to offer UK police forces a new zero-emission emergency responder option with the Model 3 police car
17 Jun 2021
'The hydrogen underdog disruptor is back in town'
Toyota Mirai opinion
Opinion

'The hydrogen underdog disruptor is back in town'

Mike Rutherford says hydrogen-powered cars could still be a frequent sight on UK roads
13 Jun 2021
Motorists think they can get away with driving offences due to lack of road police
police speed gun
News

Motorists think they can get away with driving offences due to lack of road police

Lack of road traffic police officers in the UK is making it easy for drivers to break the law, according to a survey of 15,500 British motorists
16 Jun 2021
New Mercedes-AMG S 63 spied in minimal camouflage
Mercedes-AMG S 63
Mercedes S-Class

New Mercedes-AMG S 63 spied in minimal camouflage

AMG will soon launch a tuned version of Mercedes’s flagship limousine, probably powered by a 603bhp twin-turbocharged 4.0-litre V8 engine
18 Jun 2021