A Leaked Tesla Report Shows the Cybertruck Had Basic Design Flaws
An early version of the EV company’s first pickup had many problems
In November 2019, Tesla CEO Elon Musk stepped onto a stage in California to launch a new kind of EV: the Cybertruck, an angular cyberpunk-styled pickup with bodywork made of brushed stainless steel and “unbreakable” glass. What happened next has entered into public relations folklore. Under the glare of the cameras, the demo truck’s windows smashed not once, but twice during a demonstration of their strength. Musk first swore, then joked: "There's room for improvement." That off-the-cuff remark could have been a fitting mantra for the entire project.
Not that this faltering start has deterred Tesla’s devoted fans, of course. Since then, an estimated 1.8 million customers have put down their $100 deposits to reserve a Cybertruck. The vehicle was supposed to start rolling off production lines in 2021. But two years on, the trucks still haven't been delivered, and for most customers, they won't be until 2024 at the earliest.
In May, the German newspaper Handelsblatt began reporting on the "Tesla Files"thousands of internal documents provided to it by a whistleblower. Among those documents was an engineering report that might give some insight into why the vehicle has taken so long to come to market. The report, dated January 25, 2022, which WIRED has examined, shows that the preproduction “alpha” version of the Cybertruck was still struggling with some basic problems with its suspension, body sealing, noise levels, handling and braking.
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