33% Less Bed Space for 38% More Range
Last night witnessed the unveiling of the production-spec Tesla Cybertruck, but despite Musk’s lengthy discussion on various matters, he failed to bring up the choice of Range Extender offered on the Tesla webpage. This addition, exclusive for Dual Motor models such as the All-Wheel Drive and Cyberbeast trims, provides in excess of 130 and 120 miles worth of extra range for the AWD version, bringing its total distance span to a maximum of 470 miles – not attaining the preliminary 500 mile forecast that Musk released back in 2019.
According to Drew Baglino, Tesla’s senior vice president of powertrain and energy engineering, the range extender option is a “toolbox-sized battery against the back of the cab in the bed.” When looking at the image of the Range Extender provided by Tesla, it’s clear that the box is quite large and placed against the truck’s cab. This could potentially affect the practicality of the load bed.
Elon Musk later weighed in on X (formerly Twitter) with more details about the Cybertruck’s range extender. The Tesla CEO noted that the additional battery pack “fits in about 1/3 of the truck bed. Still room for plenty of cargo.” He also mentioned that this feature is perfect for those who need the Cybertruck for extended journeys or towing heavy loads up steep hills.
The assertion that the Tesla Cybertruck can tow heavy stuff is pretty impressive, but there’s one issue that could reduce its maximum towing capacity. The Range Extender option adds extra weight to the Cybertruck, decreasing its Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) and thus its maximum towing capacity. Although Tesla has not yet confirmed the exact weight of the Range Extender, they have given us the maximum towing capacity of the Cybertruck without this option, which is 11,000 lbs. This means that the final figure for the Cybertruck’s towing capacity with the Range Extender will likely be somewhere between the 11,000-lbs upper limit and the 7,500-lbs capacity of the RWD Cybertruck.
Neither Baglino nor Musk provided information as to the price of the Cybertruck’s range-extending choice. Nevertheless, a perspicacious X user likely checked Tesla’s website code and realized it would be a $16,000 feature. Although this is not confirmed, it is well within the realm of possibility, largely due to the costliness of EV batteries.
The issue of towing range has been a popular topic of discussion within the electric pickup truck market after an F-150 Lightning driver declared that their vehicle’s range was reduced by half when hauling cargo. Ram recently launched a rebuttal with the Ram 1500 Ramcharger, an all-electric truck containing a V6 generator and totalling 690 miles of range, which is 200 more than the Tesla Cybertruck and requiring no need for recharging.