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Tesla teases electric truck with pop-up camper mode

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An electric truck built for camping? Elon Musk says it will happen

A rear view of a futuristic truck in a light beige with a pop-up camping tent off the back and a slide-out kitchen.
When electric car manufacturer Tesla debuted their new Cybertruck, one of the renderings teased a futuristic pop-up tent.

Electric-car manufacturer Tesla just released its highly anticipated Cybertruck in an over-the-top performance meant to demonstrate the truck’s ruggedness. The new truck will come in three versions with a range between 250-500 miles, but the most interesting part for outdoor enthusiasts was a rendering that showed a futuristic pop-up tent set up on the back of the Cybertruck. Love campers and trailers? Come join our community group.

Made from ultra-hard 30X cold-rolled stainless steel, the oddly shaped, punk-inspired Cybertruck features a wide windshield, angular proportions, and a sloped rear end that looks drastically different from other trucks on the market. The rendering shows a pull-out kitchen on the right hand side as well as a foldable countertop area for food prep. The sleeping quarters are under a pop-up tent with—it’s hard to make out—what looks to be a bed for two.

Each truck can seat a total of six adults on the road, with a payload of 3,500 pounds and 100 cubic feet of storage space. The single motor rear-wheel drive truck ($39,900) will be able to tow 7,500 pounds, while the triple motor all-wheel drive ($69.900) should tow 14,000 pounds. That’s good news for anyone looking to pull campers and trailers with an electric truck, and another rendering shows the Cybertruk pulling a boxy, futuristic looking travel trailer.

This is all from a rendering, but is Tesla actually planning to build a camping kit for their truck? Twitter @mithunoorath asked if the Cybertruck’s “camper mode” would be an accessory to purchase, and Elon Musk replied with a simple “Yes.” There’s no word on whether or not the camper kit will be available as soon as the first Cybertrucks roll off the line, but the pop-up tent does look legit—at least according to Musk’s tweet.

We’ve reported in the past on how people camp in their Tesla Model S using “Camper Mode”—the long-lasting 90 kilowatt hour batteries on the car allows for climate control and air filtration all night long, without any tailpipe emissions or sound. The seats also fold flat, prompting one company to make bed kits specifically for Tesla models.

But the RV industry as a whole is becoming more eco-conscious. Tesla’s direct competitor, Rivian, released plans for their electric truck with a Teprui roof-top tent and a slide-out kitchen. It could be that Tesla wanted to show the Cybertruck’s camping capabilities from the get-go in order to compete with Rivian, which is expected to release its pickup in late 2020. Ford also has an all-electric F-150 coming to market.

If real-world testing can confirm the Cybertruck’s ranges, that would be big news for adventurers looking for tow vehicles or electric overlanding trucks. We recently saw a European electric motorhome debut with a 249-mile range and Winnebago Industries has a commercial RV that has a range of 85-125 miles per charge, which isn’t long enough for most American RV enthusiasts.

Itchin’ to get your hands on a Tesla truck already? The Cybertruck won’t be rolling off the assembly line until late 2021, but preorders can be made here.

A futuristic silver truck pulls a boxy, silver travel trailer down a highway.
Another rendering of the new Cybertruck shows a the vehicle pulling a boxy travel trailer.
A view of the rear bed with the tailgate down and the glass up on a silver truck.
The rear bed of the Tesla Cybertruck.