The Tesla Cybertruck will not be available in the less expensive two-wheel drive version according to documents for government regulators. According to CNN, the document further discloses that similar to other electric trucks, the Cybertruck will possess substantial weight.
The federal National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recently published the document online. This document, discovered on a Cybertruck message board, serves as a decoder for Vehicle Identification Numbers (VINs). It reveals information about the GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) and vehicle weight. Every vehicle in America must have a unique 14-character Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) to identify it and provide assembly details. The VIN is permanently affixed to the vehicle and can be found in various places, such as a metal plaque on the windshield and the driver’s door frame.
The Tesla Cybertruck’s VIN, Decoded
A VIN decoder can provide insights into an automaker’s plans for a specific model based on what is included in the document. In Tesla’s 2024 vehicle VIN decoder, it appears that a two-wheel-drive version of the Cybertruck might not be available in its initial model year. Typically, a two-wheel-drive Cybertruck would have a lower price compared to the four-wheel-drive variants. Tesla has mentioned the possibility of offering a two-wheel-drive version as an entry-level model.
According to Tesla’s VIN decoder, the eighth character in a Tesla truck’s VIN indicates the drive system type. Letters are used to represent two- and three-motor versions, corresponding to all-wheel-drive configurations. In Tesla vehicles, as with most electric vehicles, all-wheel-drive is achieved by using one or two motors for the front wheels and one or two motors for the rear wheels.
However, the lack of a letter for a single-motor Cybertruck suggests it won’t be available for the 2024 model year. Still, the document lists letters for single-motor versions of the Model 3 and Model Y, indicating that this option will likely continue to be offered.
Why Electric Trucks Tend to be Heavier Than Gas Powered Counterparts
The sixth digit in the VIN indicates the vehicle’s Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR), which represents the maximum weight it can carry when fully loaded, including occupants and cargo. The weight range starts from 8,001 pounds and goes up to 9,000 pounds.
The vehicle’s GVWR is approximately 2,000 pounds higher than that of a Ford F-150. Electric pickups like the Ford F-150 Lightning and the Rivian R1T have similar weight ratings. This is due to their heavy battery packs. This makes them heavier compared to gas-powered trucks and results in an increased GVWR of up to 2,000 pounds.
Tesla isn’t alone in not offering a two-wheel-drive electric truck. Ford and Rivian also don’t provide a two-wheel-drive version of their trucks. While Tesla hasn’t disclosed Cybertruck pricing, they’ve previously mentioned a starting price of $40,000. If that’s accurate, it would be around $10,000 cheaper than the least expensive F-150 Lightning. Of course, that’s much more affordable than the Rivian R1T.
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