The Real Reason The Tesla Cybertruck Looks So Weird

Elon Musk has given the world electric cars, space exploration projects and the Boring Company, which seems to specialize on peculiar tunnel projects and, uh, flamethrowers. Still, it looks like he still has plenty of weirdness-tinted innovations to share with us. For instance, his much-anticipated Tesla Cybertruck is finally here — and boy, does it ever look weird. Its angular, minimalist design looks like nothing else you'll encounter on the road. As Kotaku tells us, its aesthetic has been quite justifiably compared to a video game vehicle from the PlayStation 1 era, and people have joked that it might actually be a decent-looking car that merely takes so long to render that buyers won't actually find out what it looks like until owning it for a few months. In fact, the Cybertruck looks so weird that when Jalopnik covered its unveiling ceremony and the truck's windows broke on impact after Musk had specifically promised that they were impact-resistant, the vehicle's profoundly odd looks still dominated the story. Heck, even LEGO dunked on the Cybertruck with a Twitter post that mounted one of their notoriously indestructible building blocks on wheels. LEGO. 

And sure, it could be argued that the Tesla Cybertruck looks like someone gave the factory a low polygon 3D doodle instead of actual blueprints and called it a day. Still, doesn't it seem a little weird that a company of Tesla's caliber would make a truck that looks like a blocky cyberpunk-themed tank just so snarky internet users can throw bad graphics jokes at it? Surely, there's some real reason and rhyme to the Cybertruck's design? Let's find out!

There are many reasons why the Tesla Cybertruck looks so weird

Though everyone likes to make fun of the Tesla Cybertruck's curious design choices, there are actually several valid reasons for its out-of-this-world look. According to TechCrunch, the reason the Cybertruck looks so peculiar is that it's a "unibody truck." This means that unlike many of the more familiar pickup truck designs, which are made of a separate frame and body, the Cybertruck is built around a "metal cage" that houses and protects the batteries as well as the people inside the vehicle. The unibody design means that to achieve the kind of towing power the Cybertruck boasts (Slash Gear notes that the most powerful version can tow around 14,000 pounds), the vehicle needs a number of vertical supports and a sail pillar, which combine to give the truck its unique "vector graphics" look.  

Of course, there are also other forces at play. Ultimately, the Cybertruck appears to be designed the way it is because Elon Musk thinks it looks cool, and because that weirdly blocky shape is simply the most practical one for the materials they use. Musk has revealed on Twitter that the truck's design was indeed inspired by video games, specifically name-dropping the Warthog transport vehicle in HaloThe billionaire has also tweeted a more sensible (though also more boring) reason for the truck's "planar" design: According to him, the extraordinarily hard "30X steel" the Cybertruck is made of is so sturdy that it would break the stamping presses used to mold more conventional vehicles. 

So what can the Tesla Cybertruck actually do?

When you really get down to the brass tacks, it doesn't really matter what the Tesla Cybertruck looks like, because if its technical specs are accurate, the vehicle is an absolute beast. According to the official Tesla website, the Cybertruck's able to tow "near infinite mass," which seems like a weird statement or joking exaggeration, but the truck's stated "towing capability of over 14,000 pounds" and a payload capacity of 3,500 pounds certainly make it clear that Elon Musk is not playing around with this one. The Cybertruck is also reportedly able to both raise and lower its suspension for a neat four inches, and features 100 cubic feet of lockable storage, all in all. What's more, the promotional images show that the car's "vault" (the separately accessible truck bed) can be outfitted with all sorts of custom equipment, from a quad bike they call Cyberquad to a stylish set of camping equipment, complete with a grill and a cooking station.   

Of course, until the Cybertruck starts shipping and anxious testers get their hands on it, it's very difficult to say for sure if it can live up to its expectations, or if some of the promised specifications shatter like that supposedly super-sturdy window at the demonstration. Here's hoping the clunky-looking creation can be the game-changer it's marketed as.