I think a lot of Cybertruck critics are missing the point. They talk about the looks, towing capacity and how towing, in general, will significantly reduce the range or how electric truck is not a good option for hardcore off-roading. They also compare Cybertruck to F-150 sales and how hard it will be for Tesla to dethrone Ford as the best selling truck in America. These are all valid points but truly irrelevant. There are about 3 million pickup trucks sold in the US annually. Very few buyers use these trucks for heavy-duty towing or hardcore off-roading. Can Tesla capture 10% of the truck market? I think so. Even people that don’t like the design, will recognize the functionality of the truck and superior performance of EVs. Tesla truck will appeal to enough traditional truck buyers and will attract plenty of new ones. It will also have a strong interest internationally. Celebrities will be driving these things. There will be plenty of free advertising coming from Youtubers and music videos.
Finally about production and sales numbers. I don’t know if Tesla will be able to outsell Ford F-150, but I think it will be able to sell 300–400 thousand trucks a year with a single configuration — 6 seater with 6.5’ bed, and that is a smashing success. Over Time Tesla will add more configurations. It will be very easy to add 3 seater with an 8.5-foot bed. I hear critics talk about Cybertruck’s rigid exoskeleton and how it will be impossible for third-party manufacturers to use this platform to build ambulances and delivery vans, etc. They forget that Tesla has the most flexible platform — skateboard with battery and motors. If and when Elon decides to start selling it to OEMs Tesla can easily do it and with its superior battery and drivetrain technology, with Superchargers and OTA updates it will be also a smashing success. But Tesla doesn’t need to do it. It can’t, it doesn’t have enough battery production capacity to fully satisfy its own business. Obviously selling these chassis to OEMs is not as profitable as selling complete trucks to retail customers. That’s why Tesla is in no hurry to sell the skateboards. Tesla will have a hard time producing enough batteries for its own vehicle and energy storage business for many years.
In conclusion, Tesla Cybertruck will be a big hit, when in full production it will sell as many trucks as they produce. I think, 300–500 thousand trucks a year is possible. How will Tesla push the envelope beyond that is hard to say right now. We are obviously a few years away from that decision. I think a three seater with longer bed is another configuration Tesla can easily produce. What they do after that will be based on demand and market outlook. I personally think Tesla will need another vehicle — 25k hatchback, Model 2 to get to 5–8 million vehicles sales a year and really take the market share away from dinosaur ICE manufacturers.