The controversially-styled Tesla Cybertruck electric pick-up is no longer available to order on Tesla Australia’s website. What happens now to the customers who paid a $150 refundable deposit?
Electric-car giant Tesla has slammed the brakes on the sharply-styled Cybertruck for Australian customers.
Overnight, the Tesla Australia website stopped accepting $150 deposits for customers to place orders – and instead replaced the tab with a message that says “Get Updates” (see screenshot below).
As exclusively reported by Australian-based electric-car website The Driven: “The Tesla Cybertruck can no longer be reserved in Australia, after Tesla shut off reservations for the Cybertruck for markets outside North America.”
The Driven website notes the Tesla Cybertruck is still available to order in the US, Canada, and Mexico.
The sudden shutdown of the Tesla Cybertruck’s online ordering portal in Australia comes after repeated speculation the Cybertruck may be deemed too big for Australia – and follows reports there may not be a right-hand-drive version.
Tesla boss Elon Musk has also previously hinted the company might produce a slightly smaller pick-up for global markets such as Australia.
Tesla unveiled the Cybertruck in 2019 amid a gaffe-filled display in which Musk smashed two side windows (pictured above) while trying to show it was shatterproof.
Tesla also goaded Ford into a tug-of-war battle with the Ford F-150 – America’s best-selling vehicle for almost half a century – in a promotional video.
Unsubstantiated media reports claim Tesla is holding an estimated $1.5 billion in deposits placed by Australian customers.
However, based on the $150 cost of a deposit to secure an order, that would mean 10 million people placed an order in Australia – roughly half the adult population of the nation.
Nevertheless, Tesla Australia is understood to be holding thousands of local Cybertruck orders – each of which is entitled to a refund of their $150 deposit if they change their mind, or the vehicle is not available locally.
Tesla Australia does not accept media enquiries. Drive will update this story if Tesla volunteers an explanation for what happens to customer deposits, and/or explains why the Tesla Cybertruck has suddenly been withdrawn from sale locally.
Drive would also like to ask Tesla if it had any intention of selling the Cybertruck in Australia, or was the deposit program a ruse to raise money locally.
If there was no plan to sell the Cybertruck in Australia – and if Tesla had no serious plans for a right-hand-drive version – at what point did Tesla make that decision, and why did it continue to accept deposits from customers in Australia?
Drive has listed the above questions at the bottom of this story so readers – and Tesla – can see the questions we would ask, if there was an opportunity to do so.