The Cybertruck is a vehicle so polarizing, CEO Elon Musk said Tesla would come up with a more conventional pickup if it failed. More than a year after its release, the Cybertruck continues to polarize, with those who were critical of it still skeptical, and those who appreciated it even more optimistic about the upcoming release.
Auto designer Frank Stephenson, who has done a fantastic job with companies such as Ferrari, BMW, Maserati, Fiat, Lancia and McLaren, recently shared his thoughts on Tesla’s colossal pickup. Stephenson is a prolific car designer, named by MotorTrend as one of the most influential designers today. And with a reputation for designing “biomimicry” vehicles, his creations typically display the kind of lines seen in natural settings.
Needless to say, Stephenson isn’t a huge fan of Tesla’s angular, almost brutalist pickup. According to the car designer, the Cybertruck has numerous problems in its design, both in terms of exterior and interior. On the outside, Stephenson noted that the Cybertruck’s extremely angular look will likely age just as well as PlayStation 1’s graphics – revolutionary after release, but extremely outdated years later.
The legendary designer compared the futuristic, triangular look of the Cybertruck unfavorably with the Citroën Karin concept, which debuted in the 1980s, especially when it comes to the interior. Stephenson noted that the Karin’s interior is designed to be warm and inviting, while the Cybertruck’s interior is unearthly and cold. And in combination with its dent resistant panels and Armor Glass windows, the Cybertruck looks like a vehicle designed to protect its occupants from the outside world.
Stephenson, for his part, preferred vehicles that make their occupants a part of nature, not against it. A good example of such a vehicle, said the prolific designer, is the Buick Electra EV concept, which conjures up an optimistic, sustainable future. “Compared to the brutality of the Cybertruck, the Buick Electra seems like a beacon of hope,” he said.
While Stephenson’s vision of the Tesla truck is absolutely creditable, it should be noted that the Cybertruck is a pickup, a vehicle whose segment is led by machines optimized for use, while looking as dominant and aggressive as possible. The Cybertruck is sort of an experiment for Tesla, and given the estimated pre-order numbers, it seems likely that Elon Musk’s experiment is on its way to success. After all, as the Cybertruck polarizes, the vehicle was also created by a great car designer, one who redefined electric cars with the Model S, Model 3, Model X and Model Y.
Frank Stephenson’s thoughts on the Cybertruck’s design issues can be viewed below.