A Tesla Cybertruck prototype has been spied in the wild, with some slight design tweaks.

    Twitter user greggertruck shared a single, somewhat low-resolution image of the electric ute in a car park.

    The razor-edged styling is still very much present, but some of the details have changed since we last saw the vehicle.

    The exterior mirrors, for example, are triangular, while the front bumper appears to be slightly different.

    As seen on some prototype examples following the initial concept, there’s also an enormous, single wiper.

    Tesla says the Cybertruck is set to finally enter production as soon as mid-2023, with volume production kicking off next year.

    The timing was outlined by Elon Musk in the regular quarterly investor Q&A, answering a question around when we will finally see the road-going version of the radical EV truck, which premiered as a concept in 2019.

    “We do expect production to start, I don’t know, maybe sometime this summer,” Musk said, adding that he typically downplays the significance of early production.

    Installation of production equipment for the ute at Tesla’s Austin, Texas plant is underway, and the company says it has produced all its beta vehicles.

    These latest comments built on what Elon said in August last year, when he warned that some changes to pricing and specs should be anticipated.

    “Cybertruck pricing was unveiled in 2019 and the reservation was $99, so you know a lot has changed since then,” said Mr Musk. “The specs and the pricing will be different.”

    Tesla says on its website the Cybertruck will offer a payload of up to 1587kg, up to 805km of range, and a 0-60mph (0-96km/h) time of 2.9 seconds.

    The Cybertruck had originally been set to enter production in 2021.

    “I hate to sort of give a little bit of bad news but I think there’s no way to sort have anticipated quite the inflation that we’ve seen and the various issues but what I can say is that the Cybertruck will be one hell of a product and it’s going to be like a damn fine machine,” Mr Musk added.

    The path to production for the controversial electric pickup truck has been marked by delays, with rivals like Ford, General Motors and Rivian beating Tesla to market with electric pickups of their own.

    Last year, the option to place a refundable $150 deposit for the Cybertruck in markets like Australia was removed.

    “We have more orders of the first Cybertrucks than we could possibly fulfil for three years after the start of production,” Mr Musk said in May 2022.

    Mr Musk subsequently said in September the Cybertruck would have semi-amphibious capabilities and be “waterproof enough to serve briefly as a boat, so it can cross rivers, lakes and even seas that aren’t too choppy”.

    The goal is to make the Cybertruck capable of crossing the channel from the SpaceX Starbase in Boca Chica to South Padre Island.

    That would involve crossing the Brazos Santiago Pass which, according to the US Army Corps of Engineers, has a depth of 12.8m.

    While videos on social media have shown even Model 3s deftly tackling flooded streets – emphasis being on ‘streets’ – Musk’s claim the Cybertruck can traverse great bodies of water seems to be inviting some poor choices from future owners.

    William Stopford

    William Stopford is an automotive journalist based in Brisbane, Australia. William is a Business/Journalism graduate from the Queensland University of Technology who loves to travel, briefly lived in the US, and has a particular interest in the American car industry.

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