Tesla’s Battery Day event on Tuesday was mostly about batteries, which seemed pretty inevitable. But at the end of the event, CEO Elon Musk briefly shared some much-anticipated updates on Tesla’s less mainstream products, especially the Cybertruck pickup.
The Cybertruck began taking pre-orders in November 2019. To date, Tesla has received a “gigantic” number of pre-orders, Musk said, so much as that he’s stopped counting (it’s unclear whether he ever counted each individual order one-by-one).
While not having an exact number, Musk estimated that there are between half a million and 600,000 customers on the waitlist for the Cybertruck. That’s more than Tesla’s total production goal of 2020 and will likely take the company years to deliver. It’s hard to say how many of those pre-orders will eventually be paid in full, though, as all it requires to place an order is a refundable $100 deposit.
The Cybertruck is expected to roll off the assembly line in late 2021 and be manufactured at Tesla’s new Gigafactory in Austin, Texas, which is currently under construction. The company is aiming for a “first substantial completion” in May 2021, meaning that it may be able to start production to some degree, but not necessarily in full capacity, by then.
Musk also clarified that the Cybertruck is envisioned as a North American product only, as it would not comply with requirements in many foreign markets. The CEO recently said he would consider a smaller, more “normal-looking” version of the Cybertruck for international markets.
The U.S. version of the Cybertruck starts at $39,900. It has over 500 miles of range and up to 14,000 pounds of towing capacity at the high end.
The Cybertruck was displayed at Tuesday’s event along with the Roadster, the Semi and a concept Cyberquad electric quad bike. None of these models is in mass production yet. And after the battery tech reveal this week, industry watchers believe Tesla won’t start serious manufacturing of any of them until it reaches volume battery production, which Musk is at least three years away.
“I think both the Cybertruck and the Roadster have to have this technology in it, anything that’s super high performance that depends a lot on power-to-weight ratio,” Jordan Giesige, host of battery tech-focused YouTube channel “The Limiting Factor,” told Inverse in a May interview after Tesla teased major reveals at Battery Day.