The Tesla Cybertruck, an automotive pariah, continues to prod the convention of pickup truck orthodoxy even after seven months since it’s been revealed. In many ways, it’s not going to serve the many versatile uses that the Ford F-Series, Chevrolet Silverado or Ram Trucks family of pickups will deliver on. It’s something else entirely. Whether it deserves all of the radical hype or not is another charged discussion for another time, but this week delivers an interesting detail of information that may help the case of the Cybertruck for appealing to people that use their trucks for work, rather than a lifestyle flex. The folks at Tesla Truck Club decided to render a center passthrough between the “vault” of the Cybertruck and its cabin, complete with fold-down rear seats. Tesla founder, CEO, and god emperor of silicon valley Elon Musk even liked it enough to opine on Twitter about it, saying it’s “worth considering.” But the Chevy Avalanche was doing this before it was cool. Behold:
It would be great if the Cybertruck’s rear window could roll down into the rear wall and then the whole wall fold in on top of folded rear seats.
— Tesla Truck Club ⚡️🔋📐 (@TeslaTruckClub) June 10, 2020
A bit about the Chevy Avalanche. The truck was originally based on the GMT800 platform with other body-on-frame vehicles like the Tahoe and Silverado, but blurred the line between the two. When it launched in the 2001 model year, this highly functional sport utility truck (SUT) provided the cabin creature comforts of the Suburban and Tahoe, while its midgate function allowed for the utility of a Silverado. However, as you can imagine based on the photo above, it didn’t do well in foul weather if the entirety of the passthrough had to be used. That said, the Avalanche came standard with waterproof tonneau panels, and the glass window panel on top could remain in place while the midgate was folded down. This allowed for weatherproof functionality, if you needed it. Little did General Motors know that the Chevrolet Avalanche, and by extension the Cadillac Escalade EXT, would spur the genesis of the crew cab bodystyle pickups, evolving into the opulent do-everything-great-all-the-time trucks like the GMC Sierra Denali, Ram 1500 Limited and F-150 Platinum. Ironically, the very creation of the Chevy Avalanche meant its demise.
The inception of the Chevy Avalanche took place over 20 years ago, but be careful when explaining this to postmodernist Tesla fanatics who are allergic to history. They may need a reboot.
Back to the Tesla Cybertruck. Its unlikely that its polygonal design can shift and shape itself to the demands of something like a long-box, an electric chassis cutaway truck, a single cab truck, or anything else other than what you see right now. Therefore, a center passthrough might be the only option Tesla may have to incorporate extra utility into the Cybertruck. It’s expected to launch this year, but it’s hard to say if that will actually be the case right now. Stay tuned for more.