Every once in a while throughout history, a human being does something extraordinary that causes them to achieve a certain level of fame. Whether it is an athlete with a record setting season, an artist who defined a new genre, a politician pushing for change, or an entrepreneur with an industry changing invention, certain people rise above the rest and capture the attention of the public eye.
One of these people is Elon Musk.
I have been following Musk’s journey for around ten years, both with skepticism and with an open mind, and over the course of his career I have watched him do some amazing things. From PayPal, to Tesla, to SpaceX, Elon Musk has built billion dollar household name brand companies that are revolutionizing their industries which have caused him to be thrust into the public spotlight.
With any level of fame and publicity, people in that position face an added amount of skepticism and judgement. Because Elon is so progressive with his business models, he has faced constant criticism over his bold and ambitious goals, from me included.
Yet, if we look at things on a bigger picture scale, more long term, I’m seeing a continued trend of Musk delivering on what he is saying. Sure, deadlines have been missed, and projections have been wrong, but if we look at SpaceX and Tesla, they have done some amazing things.
Is Tesla the biggest car company in the world? No, but they are regularly manufacturing all electric vehicles – what Tesla ultimately set out to do.
Has SpaceX built a colony on Mars yet? No, but he has built a billion dollar private rocket company – what SpaceX ultimately set out to do.
But here’s the thing – Elon Musks biggest accomplishment is not his money. It has been his ability to capture the public’s attention and get the masses on board with embracing a more more sustainable lifestyle, long term thinking lifestyle.
So looking at the Tesla Cybertruck from a wider lens, I can see why this truck is going to be a game changer.
1. The exterior of the truck: Your first impression of the truck is it’s almost blank exterior. While it looks simple, it is basically saying “Don’t judge me for what I look like, judge me for what I do”. Have you ever heard the saying “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” Same thing.
2. The Specs – When you look at the speed, power, and efficiency of the truck, it exceeds every single other truck in the same space. By being so drastically different looking than any other truck on the market, it forces you to simply compare the details of the truck.
3. The windows – the biggest flop of the live event was the window smashing. In hindsight, they probably shouldn’t have smashed the windows, but if they didn’t they’d have someone complaining they didn’t do it in the live presentation – there’s no way to win. While I do think the window smashing took a lot away from the presentation it proved one big thing – that Tesla is willing to take risks to push out innovative products. I’d rather a CEO gives a bad presentation about a new solar powered truck than never having people making innovative things.
4. A new audience – the most outspoken people against Musk tend to be those who want to continue with an oil and gasoline centered civilization. They are the same people who like gas guzzling trucks, and tend to be from more conservative areas. I can see why a truck lover might be against Tesla, they may feel threatened that their lifestyle and upbringing are being challenged by new ideas. But now the truck gives them an opportunity to be a part of this change, without forcing it on them. This could be the final push that gets the last remaining anti-electric car community finally on board.
While the Tesla Cybertruck exterior may look like something out of a sci-fi movie, Tesla has always been a leader in design and we have seen time and time again other companies copy. I wouldn’t be surprised if in 2-3 years from now, other companies start implementing similar design styles in their own cars, so that when the Tesla Cybertruck is ready for mass production it’s style has become more normalized.
Ten, twenty, fifty, and one hundred years from now we will look back on the Cyber Truck presentation and break it down in business, marketing, and history classes as one of the key and final turning points in history where electric trucks officially were embraced by the public.