Tesla CEO Elon Musk continues to look several steps ahead when it comes to planning future vehicles. Not only do we know now that the Model Y and Tesla Semi follow the Model 3, but we also know that a Tesla pickup truck will be next.
Musk promises Tesla pickup truck
Musk tweeted a call for users to make suggestions about what they would like to see from the EV maker, and one of the suggestions was a Tesla pickup truck. In response to the tweet requesting the pickup, he promised that they will make one “right after model Y.” He also said that he’s “dying to build it” and that he has had the “core design/ engineering elements” in his head for nearly five years.
We’ve actually heard Musk talk about building an electric pickup for years, so this isn’t a huge surprise. However, fans should be happy that he provided confirmation on the order in which he’s planning future vehicles for release.
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Unsurprisingly, his response brought further questions about the Tesla pickup truck, like whether it would be of a size similar to the Ford F-150 truck series. Musk answered that the Tesla pickup truck will have a “similar total size,” although it could be a little bigger than the F-150, he added, because it will include a feature that’s “really game changing.”
A pickup with a “game changing” feature
At the big reveal event for the semi, Tesla also unveiled an image of what some thought looked like a comically large pickup truck carrying a smaller pickup. According to Electrek, some thought that image was just a joke, especially since Musk described the Tesla pickup truck as “a pickup truck that can carry a pickup truck.” He also said he planned to use some of the work they’ve done on the Tesla Semi in building their pickup truck.
Teslarati notes that Musk had said that the huge pickup they are planning to build can be driven with a standard driver’s license rather than a commercial driver’s license (CDL). Basically, that just means that the pickup’s specs won’t exceed those of a Class 6 medium-duty truck. According to Teslarati, the pickup will likely have three electric motors, while the Tesla Semi will likely have four Model 3-derived motors.
Model 3, then Model Y, then…?
For those who haven’t been following the news on every single upcoming Tesla vehicle, the Model Y is a crossover vehicle that some have compared to a mass market version of the Model X. Musk said earlier this year that they plan to use “substantial carryover” from the Model 3 in building the Model Y so that they can launch it faster.
Tesla management has said that they’re planning to focus on the Model Y after production on the Model 3 is fully ramped up. However, the crossover vehicle has not been revealed yet, even though they have unveiled the Tesla semi and the next-generation Roadster already. As a result, things are starting to get more confusing as far as the order in which future Tesla vehicles may hit the road.
Tesla currently plans to launch its electric semi in 2019, so it’s pretty safe to say that it will probably be a lot of years before a Tesla pickup rolls off the production lines. The Model Y could be going into production in 2019 or later, based on what Musk said on the last earnings call regarding the timeline for building a factory in China, which he said would be making the Model 3 and “probably” the Model Y for the Chinese market.
Other requests from Tesla fans centered on software
In addition to the request for a Tesla pickup and the additional comments that remark spurred, fans of the EV maker also replied to Musk’s original tweet soliciting feedback with other ideas. Many of them focused on minor tweaks to the automaker’s current software, like the addition of an alert in the navigation system to inform a driver’s household roughly when they will be home.
Other suggestions called for browser updates in the Model S, like a night mode and support for mobile versions of websites. Musk admitted that the browser that’s currently in Tesla’s cars is “terrible” but added that some big updates will be coming soon. He also told fans who asked about Autopilot 2.0 that they’re still putting it through tests and working on additional features.