Elon Musk proudly walked out on stage after months of hype to show off his "Blade Runner" inspired Cybertruck. After revealing the futuristic angular design and a few window breaking gaffes later the dust has finally settled and the world can now begin to fully digest what they've just seen.
The design is certainly the main talking point and has proven to be a love or hate design. However, lost in the endless internet memes and crosstalk on Reddit boards is a new feature that is truly a game-changer for the auto industry. That feature would be the price point, more specifically the price point on the battery.
The Game-Changer We've Been Waiting For
For those who've been following the EV industry closely over the past decade, there has been one number above all others that would signal the true dawn of the EV age. That number has always been $100/kWh and with Musk's announcement, we just entered a brand new day in the auto industry. With a base model that costs under $40,000 gets over 250 miles of range and can still go 0-60 in less than 7 seconds the Cybertruck's specs are by far the most tantalizing aspect of the newly announced EV.
Looking at the higher price points also is a telling story. The top-of-the-line variant, starting at $69,900, will go more than 500 miles between charges, hit 60 mph in under 3 seconds, and tow up to 14,000 pounds. Compare that to the currently available P100D Model X and you can see just how far the industry has come in just a few short years. The Cybertruck is nearly $80,000 cheaper, goes roughly 200 miles further, near-identical 0-60mph time, and 10,000 more pounds of towing capacity!
With each new vehicle announcement, Musk and Co. have brought EVs even and are now vastly surpassing their gasoline counterparts. This more than anything else has shocked the rest of the industry into massive change.
The Auto Industry Has Left Wait-And-See Behind
Way back in 2010, EVs barely existed and now less than a decade later the auto industry is in the midst of massive change. The other automotive OEMs can no longer afford to wait-and-see what happens with electric vehicles, its clear they have nearly every advantage over their traditional gas-powered counterparts and they only continue to get bigger, stronger, and faster.
Case and point, Volkswagen, the world's largest automaker are dumping $33 Billion into developing and manufacturing as many electric vehicles as they possibly can. General Motors plans to have 20 electrified vehicle models by 2025, and Ford Motor Company just announced its most iconic brand, The Mustang, will carry an EV variant. The Model 3 has proved its staying power in the consciousness of consumers. The automotive industry must either adapt now or face an uncertain future.
The Cybertruck certainly won't sell quite like the Model 3 or even the shortly upcoming Model Y, but the significance of that announcement should not be lost in sharp corners and origami folds. We are now seeing the changing of the guard and before long EVs will be the norm and we'll all be better for it.