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Elon Musk States Tesla Cybertruck Floats, Omits That This Sinks the Warranty

Water is wet. All cars can float for a while, which makes them total losses if they are not amphibious. Elon Musk did not care about being obvious when he said the Cybertruck would “serve briefly as a boat.” Any car will. He was also repetitive: he said the same about the Model S on June 19, 2016. At the time, the Tesla CEO was careful to say he did not recommend that, something he did not do this time. On the contrary: it seemed he was talking about a standard feature (with warranty coverage). That didn’t happen with the Model S.
The Cybercat kit turns the Tesla Cybertruck into a catamaran or a hydrofoil, as a pricier upgradeThe Cybercat kit turns the Tesla Cybertruck into a catamaran or a hydrofoil, as a pricier upgradeThe Cybercat kit turns the Tesla Cybertruck into a catamaran or a hydrofoil, as a pricier upgradeThe Cybercat kit turns the Tesla Cybertruck into a catamaran or a hydrofoil, as a pricier upgradeThe Cybercat kit turns the Tesla Cybertruck into a catamaran or a hydrofoil, as a pricier upgradeThe Cybercat kit turns the Tesla Cybertruck into a catamaran or a hydrofoil, as a pricier upgradeThe Cybercat kit turns the Tesla Cybertruck into a catamaran or a hydrofoil, as a pricier upgradeThe Cybercat kit turns the Tesla Cybertruck into a catamaran or a hydrofoil, as a pricier upgradeThe Cybercat kit turns the Tesla Cybertruck into a catamaran or a hydrofoil, as a pricier upgrade
In fact, water became an excuse for Tesla to void the warranty of the electric sedan. We know of at least one case in which a Model S owner was accused of driving it on an inundation. The Hong Kong Tesla Service Center denied Larry Campbell the battery pack replacement under warranty that his car deserved and needed because it was allegedly flooded. The problem is that Campbell said he and his wife never drove his 2016 Model S in such conditions.

A possible explanation for that is that early Model S vehicles have water ingress issues with their battery packs. We just discovered that it is a known defect among independent shops. It has at least two leading causes: the AC drain hose dripping water right over these components and deteriorated side rail vents on them. Considering even the bolts in the battery packs rust with the water dropped by the AC – it spreads over the battery pack – Gruber Motors pondered they could be another moisture infiltration origin.

If the Model S was not capable of preventing even the water that its AC drain hose generates from entering its battery pack, why promote it as a boat – with “thrust via wheel rotation?” Campbell should have reminded the Hong Kong Tesla Service Center that, despite never driving his EV in flood, the company’s CEO said it would act as a vessel!

Knowing how things ended for the Model S, it makes us wonder what policy Tesla will adopt when the first Cybertruck owners decide to confirm what Musk stated and try to cross a pond, a lake, a channel, or anything similar with their electric pickup trucks. Because they will, as some of them keep trying to prove Autopilot and Full Self-Driving deliver what their names promise. At least three people have died thinking their EVs were robotaxis.

What if the Cybertruck has a design flaw that also allows water to invade its battery pack or remain on top of it? Will Tesla state these electric pickup trucks were in a flood – even if the most extreme thing they ever did was pick the kids from soccer training – so that it does not have to replace the battery pack under warranty?

We have no idea if the structural component Tesla intends to install in the Cybertruck will be better protected against moisture ingress than that of the Model S. Even if the pink foam that joins the 4680 cells makes them and their connections waterproof, the battery pack case should not rust. Will the case be made of stainless steel, like the rest of the pickup truck’s body? That is highly recommended, especially if the Cybertruck is to honor Musk’s nautical ambitions. In the Model S, the fuse box cover got corroded.

For the more than 1.5 million reservation holders that the Cybertruck allegedly has, the best promise Elon Musk could make about the electric pickup truck is that it is ready despite its body made of stainless steel and its stressed-skin structure. And that it is capable of moving on the tarmac with its own four tires. That would be enough. Yet…




Editor's note: The gallery contains images of the Cybercat, a Cybertruck that works like a catamaran.

 
 
 
 
 

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