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Two Practical Thoughts On Why The Tesla Cybertruck Owners Will Take The Limelight Of The Toyota Prius

Its ugly, boxy and people will stare. Those are the pros. The cons? Its ugly, boxy and people will stare. Here are two practical thoughts on why Tesla's Cybertruck is a status symbol like the Prius of old.

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I remember when Prius came out. There was a ton of buzz in the automotive world about it. The controversy, the hype, the sheer idea of having one seemed crazy. Then people began to own them. From that time on, these people became "Prius owners."

I have the same feeling that this new Telsa Cybertruck is going to bring a whole new meaning to the very definition of ownership, much in the same way Prius has. Here is why.

Thought 1, You Did Something Controversial
Think about Prius when it came out. It was different. It was a gasoline-electric car that reeked of "eco-friendly" everything.

Car guys hated it, environmentalists loved it, and the general public was undecided about what to do with it. The car created a big enough ruckus, that when more people began owning them, they became stereotyped as "Prius owners."

join the green movement and own a toyota prius today

Cybertruck people are going to have to go through a similar stereotype. The truck, if you can call it that, is a joke to some, a "must-have" to others, and yet the general population does not know what to do with it. The question is, though, what memes are going to come about once the people start owning them?

What are we going to call these people? Cybertruckies? If the Diesel Brothers own one, will they be called Cyberbros? There are just so many things that we could call these people. As luck would have it, though, the internet will let that evolve, so soon enough we will have a name for them.

Any way you slice it, these people are creating a movement just like Prius people did when those cars came into our lives. These people are doing something controversial. That is how I know Cybertruck owners will step into the Prius limelight, at least for a season.

Thought 2, Owning One Says Something About You
When I think of a Prius owner, I think of this. Owns a pet, probably eats granola, meditates regularly, more than likely goes to Hot Yoga, and possibly does not shave. The funny thing is, not one of those things fit me, and I own a Prius.

So what does owning a Prius say about you? It says nothing; it is what other people think about you because of the car you own. Just ask my father in law or my uncle. Both of them would rather be dead than ride in or own a Prius. Why though? It is just a car. It is like any other mode of transportation.

tesla cybertruck and cyber atv

I would bet that once Cybertrucks start rolling off the lines, there will be the haters, the naysayers, the ooglers, and of course, the opposers. Really what I think it comes down to is that deep down inside, the people who hate on the Prius and the Cybertruck are just a tinge bit jealous. They cannot get over themselves enough to embrace the wonderful world of technology. That is just my take on the situation, though.

It does not matter what you own; people will call you what they will. I drive a Prius because they are cheap, practical vehicles that do absolutely everything that I need them to. They get excellent fuel economy, they hardly ever break down, and if they do, it is a snap to fix them.

I have to admit; I am probably going to put down a reservation for a Cybertruck. I honestly think I want to brag to people about it more than anything. Like "yeah, I reserved my Cybertruck because, blah, blah, blah." Plus, I want to see the reactions from people when I do.

The Cybertruck has created a huge stir just like Prius has. For that, they are entitled to own the scene for now.

Thanks for reading, I hope you are having a great weekend enjoying the time off work, or just hanging out with friends and family. Please be sure to check out my other story, The Real Reasons Toyota Discontinued The Prius C.

Watch the 2021 Toyota RAV4 Plug-in Hybrid Prime video presentation and click to subscribe to Torque News Youtube channel for daily automotive news analysis.

Peter Neilson is an automotive consultant specializing in electric cars and hybrid battery technologies. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Automotive Service Technology from Weber State University. Peter is also an Instructor of Automotive Technology at Columbia Basin College. Peter can be reached on Linkedin and you can tweet him at The_hybrid_guy on Twitter. Find his page on Facebook at Certified Auto Consulting

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DeanMcManis (not verified)    December 2, 2019 - 10:33AM

You are right that many people will be blinded by the styling of the Cybertruck, just as they were for the Prius, missing the great technology under the skin. But that’s just human nature. I never really warmed up to the styling of the 1st Prius/Echo, but later models improved the design. Most controversial styling will polarize people into those that hate it, those that don’t mind it, and those that prefer unique styling to set them apart from the crowd. The Prius, Leaf, and Mirai all had unique styling that fans took as a badge of courage, visibly drawing attention to the fact that they were driving green cars. The Cybertruck seems to me to offer retro-futurist styling that looks rugged, but doesn’t reveal the eco-nature of BEVs. Many people who hate the Cybertruck’s styling are vocal about their disappointment with the design, but Tesla will benefit overall from owing a distinctive design once the flood of EV trucks come out in 2-3 years. Plus I expect to see a more conventional looking Model Y pickup come out a year or two after the Cybertrucks are in Tesla Showrooms.

Marc Stern    December 4, 2019 - 10:37PM

Honestly, while Tesla hopes to pull lots of business away from Ford with its claims, now, of 250,000 preorders for its hideous, not well-proportioned Cybertruck, the more important fact of the matter is that there are too many ifs and not enough info. For example, if you look at the backlight (rear window), it is hardly large enough to view any significant area in back of the truck. Indeed, with the tonneau down, it looks like the backlight is shut out so the driver has to depend on a rear camera. The rear camera, commentators have noted, has problems with its field of view. And, if you intend to do any sort of plowing or something like it, there's no place up front to attach any sort of implements, like plow blades and the like. Then there's the real world thinking about range. Tesla claims up to 500 miles for a three-motor version. That's great, but, under what conditions was that range generated? Was it loaded to its max 3,500 pound payload? Was it towing its max weight of 10,000 pounds? How were the tests run? In nice warm 70-degree weather where batteries are at their best? I would be willing to wager that if the test was run in real-world conditions of 30-degrees with snow and with full loads for payload and towing? I believe the range would be on the order of maybe 75 miles with this type of situation. By the time, theTesla is ready for prime time Rivian will be out with its r1t and Ford will have its F150 Hybrid and EV. Indeed, some info I have seen on the Ford is quite exciting regarding how the battieries are laid out. The Tesla is a PR man's dreamchild. The only reason it exists is so that Elon can go, we built it and no one bought it.