Elon Musk’s Ugly, 6,000 Pound Bulletproof Cybertruck Is a Disaster Waiting To Happen
As of November 30, 2023, Tesla has carried out its first Cybertruck deliveries to those who pre-ordered the pickup truck for $60,9900–$99,000. Even though the model is already being rolled out, Elon Musk and Tesla have failed to dispel the numerous safety concerns the Cybertruck poses.
Musk first unveiled the Cybertruck in 2019, and it was immediately clear that it wasn’t a good idea. For one, the car looks like some kind of monstrosity designed in Roblox. Second, when Musk and Franz von Holzhausen attempted to demonstrate how indestructible the windows were by throwing a metal ball at them, two promptly shattered. On top of that, deliveries were delayed for two years, and when the Cybertruck finally arrived, it was double the price Musk had initially promised.
There are also many concerns about who exactly this truck is for. Not only does it not look like any car on the market, but it also weighs over 6,600 pounds and is allegedly bulletproof. Musk has also cryptically said of the Cybertruck, “If you have an argument with another car, you will win.” It seems like its indestructibility, bullet-proof design, and potential to obliterate other cars during an argument are primarily what’s being marketed.
Of course, it’s not hard to imagine that someone could be seeking these elements for nefarious purposes. Is it really a good idea to have a car that focuses solely on protecting the driver but not anyone outside of it? However, there are much bigger problems with the Cybertruck than just how visually appalling it is or what purpose it could be used for.
The Cybertruck is a disaster waiting to happen
The Cybertruck poses a number of safety concerns. In fact, the car isn’t even street-legal in Europe, which enforces much stricter automobile regulations for pedestrian safety than the United States. Meanwhile, it’s what should be the Cybertruck’s most basic functions that are raising the biggest safety concerns, such as being able to see out of the windows.
The rear window is tiny and will be completely covered whenever the tonneau cover—the covering of the pickup truck bed—is up. Since tonneau covers are most often up to protect cargo, drivers will have to rely solely on rear cameras, even though it’s a safety hazard to do so. The way the dashboard is designed also means there’s a lot of difficulty in seeing over the nose of the vehicle and massive blind spots.
This lack of visibility may be why Musk was spotted running over a traffic sign in his Cybertruck. To top it all off, the truck’s enormous wipers don’t even cover the entire windshield, so it’s unclear what drivers will do when snow, ice, or condensation builds up.
One of the major reasons the Cybertruck is illegal in Europe is because of its stainless steel design. If a pedestrian or smaller vehicle were to be hit by it, not only would they be hit by a 6,000+ pound truck, but they’d also be struck by the razor sharp edges that the stainless steel panels create on the truck’s outside.
Stainless steel’s properties also make it very dangerous to use in cars. Most cars use materials like aluminum or steel alloyed with other elements to make them malleable. This malleability is what gives cars a crumple zone, which basically means upon impact, a car will crumple, absorb, and slow some of the force of a crash. Because it’s made of stainless steel, the Cybertruck has a small crumple zone, which means drivers could face a lot more impact and damage in a crash. Even if a driver survives a crash, trying to get repairs for a stainless steel paneled car is going to be an insurance nightmare.
There are also simply lots of unknowns about the Cybertruck. For example, we’re not sure if it even does well in snow with its ineffective windshield wipers. Also, since it has buttons instead of door handles, it’s unclear how drivers will get in if there’s ice coating their truck. The confusing design also might not be the best in an emergency. There are additional concerns about the steer-by-wire mechanism in the Cybertruck, which means there’s “no direct mechanical linkage between the steering and the wheel.” Steer-by-wire technology isn’t new, and there are arguments for its advantages. Of course, given all the other Cybertruck problems, it’s unclear how much faith one should have in this system not failing.
To summarize, the Cybertruck is a 6,000 pound stainless steel truck that can go from 0 mph to 60 mph in 2.6 seconds, being being marketed to Musk admirers who disturbingly believe they need a 6,000 pound bulletproof truck, and it has limited visibility, ineffective windshield wipers, virtually no crumple zone or rear window, and iffy handleless doors and steer-by-wire features. What could go wrong?
(featured image: Tesla)
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