In a seemingly impromptu Twitter Q&A yesterday, Tesla CEO Elon Musk revealed some further details about the company's expansion into larger forms of terrestrial electric vehicles. Promising that a long-awaited pickup truck was indeed on the way, he also hinted at a few upcoming software upgrades to make life easier for existing Tesla owners.
Tesla first signaled its intentions to move into the trucking space when Musk published Master Plan, Part Deux in July of 2016. Musk wrote of the Tesla Semi's potential to "deliver a substantial reduction in the cost of cargo transport," and also listed a new kind of pickup truck as part of its strategy to hit most segments of the consumer market.
Musk then took to Twitter in April last year to state that the pickup unveil was 18 to 24 months away. His latest public statements on the matter don't do much to clarify this timeline, but do suggest he hasn't lost any enthusiasm for the project.
"I promise that we will make a pickup truck right after Model Y," he tweeted. "Have had the core design/engineering elements in my mind for almost 5 years. Am dying to build it."
The Tesla Model Y is Tesla's upcoming all-electric compact SUV, expected to be built on a new vehicle platform and launched in 2019 at the earliest. Musk expanded a little on what the pickup might look like, in response to a Twitter user asking how it would compare to America's best-selling pickup, the Ford F-150.
"Similar total size," he tweeted. "Maybe slightly bigger to account for a really game-changing (I think) feature I'd like to add."
What that game-changing feature might be is anyone's guess, but Musk did tease a few new bells and whistles for those with a Tesla already parked in the driveway. According to the tech tycoon, new features to be added via software updates in the near future include app-controlled window, seat and steering wheel heaters, an upgraded browser, "vastly better" maps and navigation and windscreen wipers that adjust their speed automatically depending on how heavy the rainfall is.
Musk also appeared to okay a number of other requests from owners, but without specifying a timeline. These include a feature where internal cameras automatically start recording if the windows are smashed in the event of a break-in, the navigation system sending an alert to other family members about what time to expect you home and some kind of Disco Mode, where ambient light changes in time to funky beats.
"Was gonna say we'll do all but the last, but that last one sounds like good, cheesy fun :)," he said.
Want a cleaner, faster loading and ad free reading experience?
Try New Atlas Plus. Learn more