The Cybertruck’s origami-style design has a purpose and could be the reason Tesla’s pickup truck has such a low starting price. The CYBRTRK’s look was polarizing, to say the least. However, like any car out there, the design is just one of the factors buyers look at before offering up their credit cards. In the Tesla Cybertruck’s case, its unique futuristic design serves a purpose that may persuade people to rethink their initial thoughts about its outward appearance.
Tesla's pickup truck has a stainless steel alloy exoskeleton made with the same material that will be used on the exterior shell of SpaceX’s Starship rocket. Because of its tough exterior, the Cybertruck is extremely tough—perfect for a zombie-filled apocalyptic future. “It is, it is literally bulletproof to a nine-millimeter handgun. That’s how strong the skin is—it’s ultra-hard, cold-rolled stainless steel alloy that we’ve developed. We’re going to be using the same alloy in the Starship rocket, and in the Cybertruck,” said Tesla CEO Elon Musk during the pickup’s unveiling.
Based on just looking at the Cybertruck’s exoskeleton, one can see that its outward shell was not built like conventional vehicles. For example, its body kit barely has any gaps or spaces between the doors. Its exterior isn’t painted either, Tesla opted to keep the Cybertruck’s skin simple. Many people were not too pleased with the all-electric pickup truck’s appearance. However, some understood the thought that went behind it.
It’s not hard to miss the origami-like design of the Cybertruck. MotorTrend—which was lucky enough to get an exclusive look into the vehicle before its unveiling—explained why the all-electric car maker opted to build its truck in an origami-like fashion.
The Cybertruck doesn’t just look like it was folded, its stainless steel exoskeleton was actually bent and molded into the unique shape of Tesla’s pickup truck. According to MotorTrend, its stainless steel body was folded into that shape rather than cut up into several pieces—like traditional vehicles—and stamped multiple times by machines.
The Cybetruck’s body doesn’t have to be stamped, which is cost-efficient. Stamping machines that could accommodate the Cybertruck's large panels would have been extremely large, and would have resulted in significant additional investments from Tesla. With its origami-style process, Tesla is able to skip this otherwise cost-extensive part of the Cybertruck's production had it been designed like a conventional pickup.
The Cybertruck's outer frame doesn’t have to be painted as well, which further reduces production costs. It should be noted that over the course of the past few years, Tesla's paint shop at the Fremont factory has resulted in bottlenecks. Such issues would not be encountered by Tesla with its Cybertruck rollout at all.
The cost-efficiency of Elon Musk’s Cybertruck can be seen in its starting price of US$39,990. The price tag of Tesla’s CYBRTRK is very competitive in the pickup truck market. For comparison, the Ford 2020 F-150 starts at US$30,090, reported Car and Driver.
The selling price of a truck is just the beginning of its expenses. A typical ICE truck will have gas expenses, and people will probably spend extra to modify it as well. In contrast, the Cybertruck monthly expenses will be much lower because it is an all-electric car. Although, the cost to modify such a beast of a vehicle may be relatively the same as a standard fossil-fuel pickup truck, but the money saved from charging the Cybertruck can go to modifying it.
Featured Image Credit: Tesla
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Longtime writer and news/book editor. Writing about Tesla allows me to contribute something good to the world, while doing something I love.