Elon Musk Tweets That Cybertruck Will Have A Feature That VW Beetles Had Over 80 Years Ago

Cyber Vw Float

Who’s excited about the Tesla Cybertruck? Plenty of people, that’s who! Think over a million people who plonked down real, human money to reserve a chance to eventually buy one of the huge, angular, low-poly electric trucks whenever they eventually come out. Plenty of excited people who, were they to corner you at a party, would talk to you nonstop about how incredible the Cybertruck will be until you start sobbing and screaming uncontrollably, begging them to shut up, please, just for a moment, until you puncture your eardrums with those little cocktail toothpicks that look like little pirate swords. There’s a lot of hope that the Cybertruck will make an appearance at tomorrow’s Tesla AI day, and perhaps in anticipation of that, Elon tweeted about how the Cybertruck can “serve briefly as a boat.” You know, the same way that original Volkswagen Beetles could, decades and decades ago.

Here’s the tweet:

So, Elon is saying that the likely 5,000 to 6,000-pound Cybertruck will be waterproof and buoyant enough to float, “briefly,” making it able to “cross rivers, lakes & even seas that aren’t too choppy,” though good luck to you finding a not-too-choppy sea that you can cross, you know, “briefly.” Brief crossings of seas aren’t generally a thing, though there is a car designed in 1938 that has managed to pull off all of the things Elon listed there:

Yes, the humble VW Beetle. That clip up there is from a somewhat modified Beetle known as the Sea-Bug that once attempted to go from Australia to Tazmania, but stock Beetles could perform similar aquatic feats – albeit, as Elon says, briefly – with no modifications at all, something VW even proudly showed in this 1972 commercial:

Other Beetles have made their way across the Straits of Messina, and Sports Illustrated tested the Beetle’s seaworthiness back in 1963 and found that, yeah, it’ll float, for about half an hour.

Vw Messina

So, maybe Elon is right about the Cybertruck, and it’ll be able to float for a little while, just like the 20+ million of those cheap little funny-looking cars did decades ago. I hope it does, because I’m all for amphibious vehicles anywhere, any time. Besides, I bet when it’s in the water, a Cybertruck will be harder to see, and I don’t see any downsides there, either.

So, future potential Cybertruck owners, whenever that may happen: enjoy your brief, non-choppy crossings of the seas!

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60 Responses

  1. The problem is that when Elon Musk says these sorts of things Tesla owners take him at his word (really they should assume it’s about ~80% hype, 20% real). If this truck ever comes to market, there will be at least a few electrified artificial reefs donated by drivers who think their new truck can lazily float down the Mississippi or through the Grand Canyon for hours.

  2. “Think over a million people who plonked down real, human money to reserve a chance to eventually buy one of the huge, angular, low-poly electric trucks whenever they eventually come out.”

    The million people plonked down real, human money to reserve a chance to eventually buy one for $40,000.

  3. I’m still boggled that this thing will be made. I keep bringing up a specific point that never gets an answer… If the whole body is the actual “frame” of the truck and there is no other major substructure, It seems to have a complete lack of planning a crumple zone! Those straight lines don’t seem to want to “fold” in the event of an accident. This thing is going to weigh tons and it’s going to go 0-60 in stupid fast time… it’s going to be a literal ballistic missile! It will slice through whatever is in its way! And now it will even float!? I think Elon might be trolling all of us… I hope…

    1. It’s called a ‘unibody’. It’s a very common thing. Have a read:
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vehicle_frame#Unibody

      And lots of vehicles have unibodies.

      And those unibodies can (and are) designed to crumple a certain way. If you want to learn how that’s done, watch some Munro Live videos on Youtube where they analyze vehicles and tear them down to study and them out.

      Here’s one example with this video on the Kia EV6:
      https://youtu.be/Ca3nrIBVW4w?t=328

    2. I know Im not the smartest man.. or the smartest person…

      SO, how does a person (like Ol Musky) make a “laptop on wheels”.. then sell to people who (many) months ago gave him a low intestest loan. How is he going to make “laptop on wheels” that is “secure enough” to be able to be in contact with water. Sure ya got gaskets and (MUNRO and Associates) people who will help him figure out how its leaking… but that still makes no damn sense.

      A Laptop on wheels.. that a loudmouth says it will be able to float….

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