Cybertruck Review: Everyone’s Assumptions About It Were Right

Artistic rendition of the Cybertruck

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The all-wheel drive Cybertruck and the Cyberbeast are now out in the wild. Now that people have had time to test them out in all sorts of conditions, the reviews are piling up. Here’s a straightforward Cybertruck review that covers its design, driving, durability and more.

Design: How the Cybertruck Looks Close-Up

Design is the first category up on this Cybertruck review. Frankly, the Cybertruck has a design only a mother—or the CEO of Tesla—could love. While the stainless-steel exoskeleton is an… unconventional choice, it definitely has charm. It doesn’t look like any truck we’ve ever seen, but maybe that’s the appeal.

The Cybertruck is a fully electric truck built for durability, speed and power. Its clunky outer shell contains a plush, spacious interior that’s equipped with an 18.5” center touchscreen and padded seats. The minimalist design is emphasized by the dozens of shades of gray on the console, trim, steering wheel, cupholders and seats.

The Cybertruck from the side.

The all-wheel drive and Cyberbeast models both seat five adults, but it doesn’t seem cramped. The Cybertrucks’ sheer size makes for an exceptionally roomy interior. Frankly, it looks pretty similar to other Tesla vehicles’ interiors—only larger.

Driving: How the Cybertruck Handles on the Highway

Apparently, despite the Cybertruck’s bulky frame, it handles well on the highway. The Cyberbeast—the tri-motor model—can go from 0 to 60 in only 2.6 seconds. Even though it weighs a staggering 6,843 lbs (wow) its shocks keep you from feeling every bump on the road.

Those who test-drove the Cybertruck thought the steering wheel would be a pain because it’s a steer-by-wire—meaning it’s not actually connected to the wheels in any way. Instead, electric motors turn the wheels.

Many Cybertruck reviewers were pleasantly surprised at the steering wheel. For instance, although MotorTrends “had doubts” about it, they admitted it worked incredibly well for the vehicle’s size. They said they got used to it quickly and appreciated its responsiveness. 

One of the biggest driving-related flaws we noticed was the gearshift—or the lack of one, we should say. Instead of physically grabbing one, you drag an icon on the center console’s touchscreen. If your touchscreen isn’t working for whatever reason, you have to reach above your head to turn buttons on the roof.

It’s also worth mentioning the A-pillars, C-pillars and tailgate make driving a pain. They drastically limit visibility—much more than the typical blind spots. Plus, they render the rearview mirror all but pointless. Most Cybertruck reviews complain about these little details.

Battery Life: How Far the Cybertruck Can Really Go

How many miles will a Cybertruck last? If Tesla’s history of lying about driving range is anything to go off of, it’ll probably last less than whatever the window sticker says it will. The Cyberbeast should get 320 miles, the all-wheel drive should get 340 miles and the rear-wheel drive should get 250 miles. However, these trucks seem to fall short in real-world conditions. 

In a real-world range test, the all-wheel drive Cybertruck covered only 224 miles before its battery was depleted—falling 30% short of the 320-mile range advertised. When it was hooked up to a trailer, it drove only 160 miles before needing to recharge. While every electric vehicle’s battery life does something similar, most aren’t as severe.

Endurance: How the Cybertruck Holds Up Against Wear

Despite Telsa asserting the stainless steel exoskeleton reduces long-term corrosion, it seems that only a few days in the rain leads to rust. One person claimed they were explicitly told that Cybertrucks “develop orange rust marks in the rain” when they went to pick theirs up.

How are Cybertrucks rusting already? While some Cybertruck reviews say it’s because of the proprietary stainless-steel alloy Tesla used, others claim it’s because the Cybertruck doesn’t ship with a clear coat—which is the standard for literally every other vehicle on Earth. 

The Cybertruck from the front.

If you want your Cybertruck to stay safe from rust, you have to fork over an additional $5,000 for a paint film wrap you can only get from Tesla. While it’s enough to raise eyebrows, it might not be a big deal for you if you always keep your vehicles in the garage.

Durability: How Invincible the Cybertruck Really Is

Durability is one of the most important parts of the Cybertruck review since it’s the big focus of the design. While the truck’s windows are supposedly bulletproof, even Tesla has admitted that claim comes with a caveat. Naturally, various YouTubers have put that claim to the test—you’ll find dozens of videos on the subject.

It should come as no surprise that high-caliber guns easily made it through the steel panels. However, even a .17 Hornady Mangum Rimfire round—which is designed for small-game hunting and target shooting—also made it through with no problem.

In some cases, extreme durability might be bad—as the recent death of Angela Chao, the younger sister of a former U.S. Transportation Secretary, made clear. She accidentally submerged her Tesla in a pond on her 900-acre ranch in Texas. 

Reportedly, a property manager and several of her friends tried breaking the windows for several hours. Eventually, they had to tow the vehicle out—even EMS crews equipped with the right tools couldn’t get in. Since the Cybertruck is supposedly more durable than the average Tesla, this kind of accident casts a shadow over the promising claim of bullet-proof windows.

Crash Tests: How Well the Cybertruck Withstands Impacts

Crash tests should be a huge part of any Cybertruck review. Unfortunately, the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety and the National Traffic Safety Administration have no plans to crash test the truck any time soon. Since it’s a limited production, they see no reason to test it.

Even though we don’t have data on how well the Cybertruck performs during a crash test, things aren’t looking good. The video Tesla released doesn’t look promising—the truck seemed to shatter instead of crumple, meaning the vehicle would likely be totaled in a high-speed crash. Plus, the driver and passengers would probably feel every bit of built-up momentum.

Off-Road: How the Cybertruck Drives the Road Less Traveled

If you go on the official page for the Cybertruck—or listen to Elon Musk talk about it—it’s supposedly a vehicle built for the apocalypse. It’s pictured driving through rivers, on mountaintops and on rock-covered terrain. However, it doesn’t handle those scenarios well.

In wade mode, you’re supposed to be able to drive through deep water. The battery pack takes 10 minutes to pressurize and lasts 30 minutes. In one real-world test, the Cybertruck had no trouble driving through water. However, it lost a few plastic body pieces and the bottoms for the tonneau cover and tailgate stopped working afterward.

The Cybertruck from the side.

While it handles well off-road, you have to navigate through all sorts of modes and screens on the center console’s touchscreen—and there’s nothing stopping you from picking the wrong one and damaging your truck. Plus, the Cybertruck’s limited visibility makes driving it in those conditions tricky. 

The Final Verdict on the Cybertruck Review 

Although the Cybertruck looks unique, turns well and accelerates quickly, its battery life, durability and off-road power leave much to be desired. Plus, there are significant quality-of-life issues like the rearview mirror being virtually useless or the huge side slabs making loading the truck bed impractical. 

If you’re a Musk stan, you can probably overlook most of the finer details and be happy with your purchase. However, this truck isn’t it for most people—there are far better all-electric trucks on the market today. Besides, most people won’t be willing to shell out $60,990-$100,000 for one of the models, anyway.

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