Tesla CEO Elon Musk revealed production for the long-awaited Cybertruck could begin “maybe sometime this summer.”
The uniquely style pickup’s been the subject of much conjecture since it was introduced in 2019. Much of that speculation centering on when it will arrive. It’s made sporadic appearances, but the timeline, which had it originally arriving in 2021, has been adjusted repeatedly since its debut.
However, speaking to analysts and investors during the company’s Q4 and full-year earnings call Wednesday, Musk once again danced around a firm date for the start of the truck’s production run, although he did narrow it down some more.
“We do expect production to start, I don’t know, maybe sometime this summer,” he said. “But I always like to downplay the start of production because the start of production is always very slow. It increases exponentially, but it’s always very slow at first, so I wouldn’t put too much thought into start of production.”
He added that volume production wouldn’t occur until 2024, but the company was installing the equipment needed — including the world’s largest press — to build the truck that reportedly has more than 200,000 reservations. The Cybertruck line is going in at Gigafactory Texas, just outside Austin.
A moving target
Musk, who’s said repeatedly he doesn’t care if the Cybertruck is successful, he just likes it and wants to build it, has been moving the production “goalposts” in the years following its reveal in 2019. Since it’s arrival, Rivian, Ford, General Motors and Lordstown Motors have begun producing trucks.
Not only has the startup date moved, so has the price.
The original plan was to introduce a single-motor version of the pickup for $39,900, with a peppier dual-motor model at $49,900. The high-performance, three-motor Cybertruck would start at $69,900, Tesla announced nearly three years ago. However, with increased materials costs rising so is the price of the Cybertruck, although how much still hasn’t been revealed.
Musk acknowledged “A lot has changed since” Cybertruck was first unveiled, “so the specs and pricing will be different.” Nonetheless, he added, it’s still “gonna be a damn fine machine.”
Tesla set new benchmarks for its fourth quarter and full-year financial results, but still fell short of analysts’ estimates for the periods.
The Texas-based EV maker reported net income of $12.6 billion on revenue of $81.5 billion. Despite being 51% higher on revenue and 128% on net income, the company still fell short of the targets set by analysts. The company was expected to report earnings per share of $3.62, but analysts expected more, starting with an EPS of $4.01.
To be fair, Tesla didn’t miss by much with analysts’ consensus estimates coming in at $81.7 billion for FY 22 revenue, and it exceeded the $24.2 billion revenue estimate for the fourth quarter, although it missed the Q4 EPS expected to be $1.13. Those numbers came in at $24.3 billion and $1.07 respectively.
The company delivered a record 1.31 million vehicles in 2022, but that fell short of expert guessers, who predicted 1.34 million.
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Tesla Cybertruck is expected to start production in the summer of 2023