Over three years after it was revealed to the world, the Tesla Cybertruck remains in development. Production was originally supposed to begin in 2021 with approximately 1.8 million reservation holders currently waiting for Tesla's pickup truck. That said, they seemingly won't be waiting too much longer with release candidates due in late August.
Why has the Cybertruck taken so long to arrive? It's hard to pinpoint one sole reason, with a magnitude of factors at play. That said, its unorthodox design has undoubtedly played a large role in delaying production. Per a leaked engineering report, the preproduction "alpha" Cybertruck had serious suspension, braking, and handling problems.
The report was one of many internal "Tesla Files" leaked by a whistleblower last month. Given the exact date of the engineering report was January 25 2022, it's fair to assume most of the issues have now been addressed. Still, it's interesting to hear about some of the challenges Tesla faced during the Cybertruck's lengthy development.
One of the engineers stated that he was "blown away" by how Tesla was "struggling so much with the basics". According to Wired, the report suggests that the Cybertruck's unusual design resulted in it being hard to fully seal. This in turn led to an abundance of noise and leaking issues.
The report also claimed that the Cybertruck handled very poorly with lots of body roll, steering issues, and “structural shake". Even worse was braking. Engineers were targeting a braking score of seven, per the Society of Automotive Engineers scoring system. That score would be considered "fair". What did the pre-production Cybertruck achieve in reality? A four, making it somewhat dangerous for public roads.
That said, a lot of work has presumably been done in the past 18 months. After all, Tesla CEO Elon Musk seems very confident about a Q3 launch for the first Cybertruck release candidates. Mass Cybertruck production is scheduled to begin in 2024, with Tesla targeting an output of 375,000 units per year.