Tesla’s pickup truck is surely the most eagerly-awaited new vehicle since…well, Tesla’s last vehicle. Pickups are the biggest segment of the US auto market, and electrifying them will be a major, and necessary, turning point for EV adoption. Ford, GM and startup Rivian all have electric pickups in various stages of development, but Tesla is the trend-setter, and these companies and many others will be watching Tesla’s unveiling ceremony closely.
When Tesla unveiled Model 3 in 2016, the downpour of advance reservations brought a flash flood of publicity to the EV industry. As Electrek recently noted, Tesla didn’t trumpet the reservation numbers after its most recent unveilings (Model Y, the Roadster and the Tesla Semi). Will it do so after the pickup launch? An impressive number could inspire other automakers by demonstrating how much pent-up demand there is for a plug-in pickup.
So far, the most intriguing thing we know about the planned pickup
is that it “won’t look like a normal truck,” as Elon Musk told the Ride the Lightning podcast in
August. Musk also said the Tesla truck will be available with 300,000 pounds of
towing capacity and up to 400 to 500 miles of range, and that he’s holding firm
on a starting price under 50 grand: “It’s got to be like $49,000 starting price
max. Ideally less. It just can’t be unaffordable. There will be versions of the
truck that will be more expensive, but you’ve got to be able to get a really
great truck for $49,000 or less.”
Another major milestone for electromobility may be at hand: Elon
Musk seems to be getting better at holding to deadlines. In a recent tweet to a
fan, he said the unveiling ceremony will take place in November, as planned.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 9, 2019