Tesla will hold an event in early 2022 to celebrate the opening of its “Giga Texas” electric vehicle factory, Elon Musk said on Monday (Australia time).
The announcement came in response to new photos on Twitter of the EV factory, at which Tesla will make the Cybertruck as well as battery cells.
Musk referred to the event as a “grand opening party” that will include factory tours, and might be much like the “country fair” event that the EV maker held recently at its Giga Berlin factory in October. Musk did not elaborate on an exact date, so the event will likely fall anywhere from early January to late March.
Tesla will hold a Giga Texas grand opening party with factory tours for the community in early 2022
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 19, 2021
While it is not clear how soon this means Tesla will start volume production of the Cybertruck, the announcement of the imminent opening of Giga Texas is at least an indication that there is “movement at the station”, to use the Australian vernacular.
It is thought that the Cybertruck, Tesla’s avant-garde and angular electric ute (or pickup, as it is known in the US), will be in high demand when it does finally go into production, with as many as 1.3 million full-refundable deposits taken by Tesla according to this crowd-sourced reservation tracker.
And, it will be an “insane technology bandwagon” as Musk put it in November, kitted out with every tech features Tesla can throw at it.
However, its introduction has been pushed back. Originally, Tesla intended to launch the first edition Cybertruck in late 2021, but this has since been pushed back to 2022.
The company has also removed all references to price and motor configurations from its website, sparking discussion about how much the Cybertruck will cost, if there would be further delays and if Tesla was making any significant changes to the orig9inal design.
Musk has since elaborated, confirming that supply chain issues continue to dog the company – as with all other manufacturers of things – and that he would provide Tesla watchers with an updated product roadmap at the company’s next earnings call in January.
He has also confirmed that the Cybertruck will first be delivered to customers in a quad-motor format – upping the ante against electric ute rivals such as Rivian and General Motors – that is able to “walk like a crab”.
Whether this is in addition to the single, dual and tri-motor variants, or if Tesla will drop one of these is currently unknown, although it has been rumored Tesla may drop the single-motor variant.
A recent prototype of the Cybertruck was caught on camera by a drone at Giga Texas, also hinting that Tesla is at least getting close to a series production version of the electric ute. A massive windshield wiper also sparked speculation about the final version, this time eliciting a response from Musk that it would not include a giant wiper.
It is not clear if Tesla will allow the general public to register for tickets to the Texas opening event. Tesla often issues invitations to it special events, however for the Berlin event it opened a website at giga-fest.com where Berlin locals could register interest in attending.
Bridie Schmidt is associate editor for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She has been writing about electric vehicles since 2018, and has a keen interest in the role that zero-emissions transport has to play in sustainability. She has participated in podcasts such as Download This Show with Marc Fennell and Shirtloads of Science with Karl Kruszelnicki and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum. Bridie also owns a Tesla Model 3 and has it available for hire on evee.com.au.