By on November 26, 2019

Last week’s Tesla Cybertruck introduction is still dominating discourse, and in classic Tesla fashion, it’s doing so in a truly annoying way. Following a sketchy tug-of-war with a downslope-pointed, rear-drive F-150 intended to show the cockroach-shaped Cybertruck’s brawn, Ford has demanded a do-over on a (literal) level playing field.

Again, it’s annoying.

While “polarized” doesn’t begin to describe the reaction to Cybertruck, one comment about the retro-futuristic EV caught my eye. It was a reason why someone might not consider the vehicle, and it has nothing to do with power, price, or build quality.

The auto writer in question, despite loving the avant-garde wedge design, voiced concerns on social media about the vehicle being potentially unsafe for pedestrians (valid), too large (also valid, but perhaps less so in this segment), and “maybe deeply anti-social.”

That last criticism took me aback. Anti-social? Is this something people think about when spending tens of thousands of dollars on a vehicle for themselves — that the vehicle might make unpleasant waves in society?

Scrolling through the dictionary, one discovers that anti-social means “contrary to the laws and customs of society” and/or “antagonistic to sociable instincts or practices.”

Can we no longer go our own way? Must we now worry about offending the sensibilities of a bunch of randos we’ve never met? Listen, while Tesla still needs to answer a long list of unanswered questions before I’d give Cybertruck a go, its overall appearance, like that of any vehicle, needs to appeal to just one person: myself.

I can see how some vehicles could be anti-social in a way — take Hummer’s road-hogging H1 and even H2. Lambos strike me as both impractical and visually unappealing, and have since the 1980s. To numerous environmentalists, every full-size pickup that drives by is the equivalent of a black-coated man walking up to them on the street and making a throat-cutting motion with his right hand. The threats never cease!

The great thing about having access to a broad range of consumer goods from across the globe is that we can pick and choose what suits us, what stimulates that special feeling, what makes us — the individual us — feel good.

A buddy of mine drives a Scion xB and an Isuzu VehiCROSS because he likes oddball cars. His desire to be offbeat comes with a side effect of being noticed, and that’s alright with him. Where would we be as a society if we couldn’t express ourselves through the vehicles we buy?

Visually jarring? Bring it on.

What’s your take on this, B&B? When thinking of purchasing a vehicle, have you ever taken into consideration society’s reaction to your potential purchase? Did it matter one iota?

[Image: Tesla]

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132 Comments on “QOTD: Worried About Expressing Yourself?...”


  • avatar
    How_Embarrassing_4You

    Oh boy. This one should be fun.

  • avatar
    Hummer

    TTAEVs, we’ve had more articles on the cyberware and faux Mustang than I’ve seen on any one topic since Bertel was still around.

    Either you guys are desperate for clicks or the auto industry is in a Malaise era worse than the 80s. It’s starting to look like both tbh.

    • 0 avatar
      ScarecrowRepair

      Eh? That’s what happened recently in auto news. Would you rather TTAC ignored auto news that isn’t about gas engines?

      • 0 avatar
        Hummer

        Sure I’m glad to hear about it, but how many articles have there been over the past week on these two? Is there nothing else happening at all? No other new model reveals, no engine technology updates, or no new enthusiasts model hints being dropped around the industry?

        • 0 avatar
          MrIcky

          “Sure I’m glad to hear about it, but how many articles have there been over the past week on these two? Is there nothing else happening at all? ”

          —not really. All the other introductions happened a couple months ago. Los Angeles didn’t appear to offer up a lot except for EVs.
          Everything else is just special editions.

        • 0 avatar
          ToolGuy

          “no engine technology updates”

          Please, no. :-)

          • 0 avatar
            Hummer

            I’ll happily look square at a 500 cubic inch Aluminum OHV V8 that can run on 4 cylinders, (4.1L displacement on 4) and buy just about every vehicle they put it in.

  • avatar
    Zackman

    I’m very intrigued by this “truck”!

    I see sort of a land-based F-119 stealth aircraft, although I don’t know how long the styling will be viewed as fresh, since the F-119 was grounded years ago, and the relevance is questionable.

    Who knows? Is this thing comfortable? How well can you see out of it? Is the interior roomy?

    I say build a ton of them and sell them like hotcakes! I’d like to see one up close because I find it very appealing.

    • 0 avatar
      ScarecrowRepair

      F-117, I believe. But that’s an interesting angle (!) — combined with lack of a big metal engine, what would this thing do for radar speed enforcement?

      • 0 avatar
        Zackman

        Yes, my mistake – F-117. Thanks for correcting that.

        As for police radar evasion, I wonder… although I didn’t think of that!

        Hmmm… I’d like to see that tested.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        The fact that it doesn’t have a lot of forward facing surface would probably reduce radar detection range. Years ago I read that a slight tilt to the radiator was enough to reduce the range of a police radar.

        • 0 avatar
          ttacgreg

          In the 70’s 55mph national speed limit fiasco, Car and Driver magazine looked into radar profiles of vehicles and I remember three that were prominent in their testing.
          The Corvette of that time was the stealthiest by far, unclockable until less than 1000 feet from the radar unit. They speculated that the fiberglass body, the hidden head lights that rested tilted downward, and an angled radiator were the main factors.
          Motorcycles were invisible.
          Semi trucks were clockable at a mile or so distance.

    • 0 avatar
      Secret Hi5

      Zackman just blew the lid on the previously top-secret F-119. Expect a knock on the door from men-in-black soon.

      (So…if an automaker makes a stealth vehicle, but does not advertise it as such, then do you think the gov’t would step in and halt sales “in the interest of public safety?”)

  • avatar
    Lie2me

    Yes, especially when I was young I wouldn’t drive an old man’s car (Buick) or a “girl’s” car (VW b*tch basket). I did end up buying a ’69 Buick Riviera when I was 18, because it was such a fine car. I told myself it was a young old man’s car.

    These days I buy what’s right for me and my needs and couldn’t care less what others thought

  • avatar
    ajla

    I don’t put louder exhaust systems on my cars/motorcycles because I know they bother people.

    • 0 avatar
      Land Ark

      Right around my 40th birthday last year something switched and I no longer considered loud exhaust to be awesome.
      There was no significant event that caused it that I can put my finger on. At some point I would hear someone drive by in a loud car and think, “Congratulations, you spent $800 on a noisemaker.”

      I can’t point out when exactly I no longer required a subwoofer in my car, and I no longer enjoyed driving around with my windows open blasting my British indie rock for all to hear. Though overall, I find way fewer people doing it than when I was younger. So maybe it’s not just me.

      • 0 avatar
        A Scientist

        You’re not alone. I’ll turn 40 in January, and I’ve hated loud exhausts for a least 3 years or more. 18 year old me loved all that noise, especially the loud drone of the 2-chamber flowmasters under my ’68 Camaro at the time. Wouldn’t live with that today if you paid me. Granted, I still enjoy listening to a good *sounding* exhaust note, I think my 335i sounds pretty nice. But volume-wise, forget it. Same goes with music. Dammit, I’m getting old! lol

      • 0 avatar
        krhodes1

        I spent the money on the BMW Performance Exhaust for my wagon because from the factory it was TOO quiet. You couldn’t hear the engine at all really, just a faint whine in the distance. With the PE, it sings Wagner. It may not go faster, BMW sez 3-5hp, but it sure sounds a lot more urgent. But I wouldn’t call it loud, it’s still quieter than most any factory performance cars – looking at you, Chrysler Hemis and that Camaro SS I had the other week… Of course, that’s the difference between a $1500 bit of factory engineering and crap from the autoparts store or some straight pipes.

        I also bought an AutoRicambi exhaust system for my Fiata (at age 50) – it makes it sound just like my old 500 Abarth, and there is no universe where that is a bad thing. That one is a little more obnoxious, but little convertible sports cars aren’t really for the shy and retiring…

        There is a big difference between noise and music, even if both ring the decibel meter at the same level.

        As far as caring about what people think about what I drive – never for anything I have bought. Though there are a couple cars I would not buy because of the image. A Corvette being #1 on that list with a bullet. But I am simple not a Corvette sort of guy – the stereotype is just one of a long list of reasons why I would never buy one, despite having some respect for them.

        • 0 avatar
          Vulpine

          While I’m not going to argue on your feelings about the Corvette, you might want to watch an old TV series called Route 66. You might even recognize one of the stars from the old Adam 12 series. Route 66 featured a couple of guys riding the countryside in a Corvette (each year the next newer model–including the ’63 Stingray) and didn’t play to any stereotypes. In fact, many of the stories are as valid today as they were 60 years ago.

    • 0 avatar
      Ryoku75

      I’m probably the youngest one in this chain but I dont like loud exhausts myself. They dont help me commute, they dont help gas mileage, its just noise. Where I live most loud exhaust systems are the product of rust, saws, and straight piping.

      In a way its backwards, across my state people have always whined about the noise from airports, race tracks, and amusement parks as subdivisions corrode the landscape. Now that we have plenty of homes we celebrate our peace and quiet with loud dogs, loud exhaust, loud dogs, loud children, loud dogs, and loud audio systems.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      I’ve tended to avoid loud exhaust more because I personally find it annoying. I can’t imagine driving a few hundred kilometers with a loud exhaust before one would go bonkers. Another reason is stealth. I don’t want the entire planet to know that I’m hitting red line on every shift when riding a back country road.

    • 0 avatar
      tankinbeans

      I live in an area where fart cans and modified exhaust are still done. Obnoxious doesn’t begin the describe it.

      However, it’s hilarious to realize driver is caning an automatic and thinks it sounds sweet.

      Not a bash against automatics, finally gave up the fight, but remarking on the idea that aftermarket exhaust on one sounds really dumb.

      • 0 avatar
        Vulpine

        @tankinbeans: It really doesn’t matter how those “fart cans” sound; the important factor is to whether it improves engine performance or not. Personally, I hate those ‘fart cans’ but they’re about as close to open pipes as you can legally get today, which means the engine can breathe and therefore gain some horsepower.

    • 0 avatar
      ToolGuy

      Slightly off-topic: I can handle the trucks and cars and motorcycles (if I’m not in it or on it) because they eventually move away from me. What really drives me nuts these days is my neighbor’s industrial-grade gasoline-powered blower which drones on for the better part of an hour *right there*.

      Whew – thanks for listening. :-)

  • avatar
    Spartan

    Have you ever taken into consideration society’s reaction to your potential purchase? Yes. Absolutely. Depending on your profession, it matters.

    Did it matter one iota? Yes.

    We have a 2018 Cadillac Escalade Platinum but I don’t drive it to work. I take the train to most days and when I do drive to work, I take the GTI. I just don’t want the headache.

    “Hey Jim, you don’t need a raise. You’re driving a Cadillac-ack-ack-ack-ack-ack.”

    • 0 avatar
      golden2husky

      There is a book called “Drive a modest car” that goes into this line of thinking, especially if you are the company owner.

      • 0 avatar
        Vulpine

        @golden2husky: The problem is that for many people a car is a Status Symbol; it represents what they want to be more than what they are. For others, it represents what they are–period. This past 20 years, however, has been a lot of monochromatic invisibility, so the only way many could express individuality was by changing some aspect of the car to be less conformative. My own father accused me of buying a Status Symbol when I purchased a Camaro because he believed practicality was more important than personality. I purchased the Camaro because I wanted something fun over utilitarian and by then I was totally sick of sedans (and Fords, specifically.)

        The issue is that in today’s world especially, the wealthy–being those in the top 10% of income–are becoming reviled; they’ve become a class that, by the current stereotype, thumb their noses at we ‘little people.’ Driving a fancy luxury car draws attention to your income level and potentially makes you a target for harassment. They now want to minimize their exposure and pretend to be just like the rest of us.

        On the other hand, those smaller people who have worked their tails off trying to make something of themselves want to show that success, even if it is a minor one, by buying something barely within their means, which is why one group buys expensive pickup trucks and another buys BMWs and Mercs (and a third group goes for the BMW/Mercs on the used car lots.) The rest do what they can within their affordability range–which offers few cars with any individuality in them. Which leads up to the next point.

        In my own case, I’ve used graphics like stripes and even custom designs run down the side of the vehicle to achieve that individuality. I’m intending to do something similar for my current vehicle but I haven’t decided on a specific design yet. The nice thing today is that the different brands are • starting • to recognize that people are tired of monochrome; they’re starting to add primary and secondary colors to their factory paint chips other than the basic reds and blues, even if they still have five shades of grayscale between black and white. So while the type of car is important for some to show off, the second malaise era is ending… as the OEMs finally understand that not everybody likes the same things.

    • 0 avatar
      Lie2me

      Rule #1, you never want to drive a car better then your boss’s, so unless he drives a Bentayga it’s probably wise to leave the Escalade home

    • 0 avatar
      imnormlurnot

      “Absolutely. Depending on your profession, it matters.”
      Around 1993 I had an interview for an accounting position. My car was a red Celica All-trac. I thought that would project the wrong image, so I borrowed my wife’s grey Camry. I got the position.

      Later, I found out the 2 people that interviewed me, both, thought I drove up in the red Porsche 911 that had been parked across from me. So it goes.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        @imnormlurnot – stereotypes abound. A colleague had told me his son had applied for a senior IT position at a big oil company and was told that he needed to own a pickup to fit in with the corporate image. He got the pickup and got the promotion. Apparently most of the executives were into high end jet boats and pickups were part of the pecking order.

  • avatar
    Jon

    Can we be done with this truck? The discussion about it is worn out. I’m tired of reading the same analysis but with a different writer, words and context. The truck was not interesting to begin with and now the media buzz is more like the obnoxious background hum of a backup generator in Bagdad.

  • avatar
    Pig_Iron

    The auto writer in question, voiced concerns, the vehicle “maybe deeply anti-social.”

    Is he such a weak delicate flower that he sees an inanimate object as anti-social?

    Hard times create strong men,
    Strong men create good times,
    Good times create weak men,
    Weak men create hard times.

    • 0 avatar
      iNeon

      What’s a man, now—
      What’s a man mean?
      Is he rough or is he rugged—
      Cultural and clean?

      Now it’s all changed—
      it’s got to change more.
      ‘Cause we think it’s getting better—
      But nobody’s really sure.

      And so it goes, go ’round again—
      But now and then we wonder who the real men are.

      —J. Jackson

    • 0 avatar
      Thomas Kreutzer

      and hard men create babies…

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      “maybe deeply anti-social.”

      The author did go on to post a definition of “anti – social”.

      “contrary to the laws and customs of society” and/or “antagonistic to sociable instincts or practices.”

      If one applies that definition to this truck, it is as anti-social as it gets…i.e. it does not fit any traditional pickup design customs, practices and/or traditions.

  • avatar
    golden2husky

    It’s simple. Buy what you like. Your purchase has to satisfy you, nobody else. Of course there are things that you can do with your purchase that makes you a POS. Like rolling coal. Or driving 45 in the left lane. But these things are far more of a reflection on you, not your choice in vehicles.

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      Agreed but some vehicles are going to attract attention and certain comments from people who assume stereotypes. As long as you are OK with this and can handle it then you’ll be fine. Drive a Prius? You are an eco-weenie. Drive Hummer? You eat baby seals for breakfast. Sometimes these stereotypes are spot on, but often they are not.

      Clearly this Cybertruck thing is polarizing – its an EV which puts you in one camp yet at the same time the styling and size puts you in the opposite camp. Talk about an odd and difficult marketing position.

      • 0 avatar

        Know what you mean JMII. I own a Charger with the V6 Pentastar. Most comments I’ve gotten so far run in the area of “Oooh, muscle car” or something similar. My first car was a 72 Charger (318) and I wanted my last car (most likely) to be a Charger. Heard good things about the combo I have which is why I bought it as it fits my check boxes. To the QOTD, by what you want – you’re the owner/driver, not society.

  • avatar
    Dan

    They sold the Impala SS, the good one 25 years ago, with “Lord Vader, your car is ready.” Today it would be one of the most cheerfully styled cars in the school drop off line. Even the Subarus that the pussy hatted drive to Whole Foods are all creases and angry headlights now. Hatred and fear of your fellow man is the in thing these days. Cars are just one of a thousand expressions of that.

    This will end well.

  • avatar
    Land Ark

    There HAVE to be B&B here who at one time in their lives would have refused to buy a Miata for it either being a girl’s car or a car driven by men who prefer the company of other men. I’m mostly looking at you, guys who lived in the late 90s.

    • 0 avatar
      jack4x

      New Beetle too, at the same time and for the same reasons.

    • 0 avatar
      Dan

      “There HAVE to be B&B here who at one time in their lives would have refused to buy a Miata …”

      At one time?

    • 0 avatar
      Imagefont

      I drive a Miata. When people ask I tell them I’m compensating for my masculinity.

    • 0 avatar
      whynotaztec

      I love the Miata stereotype. I drove one part-time for 10 years, and you bet I paid attention to every other Miata driver I saw. Not ONE young lady, so forget the chick car thing. And I can’t really tell the gay/straight thing when looking at a driver. But without fail Miatas were driven by late middle aged women, and late middle aged men with beards and a cap.

      • 0 avatar
        krhodes1

        A couple of my gay friends had NA Miatas. I could not afford one back then, so I bought my Spitfire. ;-)

        I now have a Fiata, which is fairly amusing as a big bear of a gay guy. Though I probably don’t look quite as ridiculous in it as I am sure I do in the Spitfire, which is about 3/4 the size. It’s funny how the slightly different proportions make the Fiat look so much bigger than the Mazda.

        But yeah, most of them are driven by women of a certain age.

  • avatar
    3800FAN

    My big cybertruck questions are is weight and safety. Being made out of 3mm stainless steel, combined with the battery it’s probably looking at being 6000lbs. You can see in the f150 tug o war video it’s also noticeably longer and wider, like f350 in size. If you’re in a crash in this thing what if rescuers can’t break the unbreakable windows or cut through the exoskeleton with the jaws of life? I’m sorry but you want vehicles to be destructible for a reason. Then the added weight just reduces efficency, why not make a unibody design like the honda ridgeline but bigger? It just makes me think the cybertruck is more of a concept that’s put out there to grab more deposits and more capital from investors and there’s no better way to do that with a crazy design that’s not to be taken seriously, hence the cheap $100 deposit instead of the big deposits that they required for the 3 and y.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    I’m becoming triggered over the unreal number of articles about electric Mustangs and Tesla trucks. Enough already.

  • avatar
    BunkerMan

    On another note, after seeing the picture above, it shouldn’t squat that badly in the back when there is a relatively light “sport” ATV in the bed. I hope it’s showing off some hydraulics used to lower the back on purpose.

  • avatar
    JimZ

    The only way I can interpret that is talking about those who would drive one of these because of its intimidating look. Pretty much the same as those hicks who drive lifted diesel pickups; they’re immature man-children who think “I can’t legally p!ss in your face to assert my dominance, so I will do this instead.” You know, pretty much every 20-something d-bag.

    • 0 avatar
      MoparRocker74

      Intimidating? Seriously? A dead silent side of a building rolling on wheels that came off of a trash can is a lot of things. Intimidating isn’t one of them.

    • 0 avatar
      How_Embarrassing_4You

      Yes, totes nailed it brah. It’s the same for skinny jeans wearing morons with bad beards who borrow their Moms life partners Subaru Forester to head on down to the next Antifa rally. monkaS

  • avatar
    ToddAtlasF1

    It is antisocial to take a subsidy to flaunt the whiffle life that lets you buy expensive toys. If there is social unrest, being a giant target for all the angry people having their rights eroded for the greater evil probably won’t turn out to have been a survival tactic. The fear is in Musk’s head, which is why he is selling the fantasy that these stainless-steel middle-fingers are bullet-proof.

    • 0 avatar
      TMA1

      Speaking of social unrest, is this vehicle antisocial enough to be torched by anarchists at Donny’s next inauguration? It’s a rolling sign of wealth and income inequality, taking up far more resources than any one person is entitled to. But it’s also electric, and thus saving the world. How to resolve this paradox?

      I remember them torching a limousine on K St. on 1/20/17. What happens if a Tesla was sitting in its place?

      • 0 avatar
        ToddAtlasF1

        I used to work with an eco-terrorist who is now a member of the deep state with a high security clearance. His group was burning Ford Excursions at Richmond dealerships. One time we could see a Ram SRT-10 at a dealer ‘tent sale’ in Charlottesville, and he just about lost control of his faculties. His face turned bright red and his mouth foamed as he snarled that it needed to burn. He isn’t going to be burning a Tesla truck, and the people he hates have a history of creating civilization, thus being civilized. I don’t know what will happen, but anything could.

        • 0 avatar
          JimZ

          “I used to work with an eco-terrorist who is now a member of the deep state with a high security clearance.”

          HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

          tell me another one.

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            He is a Science Officer within the Laboratories division of U.S. Customs and Border Protection in Washington, D.C. and has co-authored a book on pyrotechnics. He’s also the most outspokenly anti-American person I’ve ever met. Why he’d want a job in the federal government instead of academia is something people who don’t know what is going on should be asking.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Because when I think Customs and Border Patrol, I think scientists in a laboratory.

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          “I used to work with an eco-terrorist who is now a member of the deep state with a high security clearance. His group was burning Ford Excursions at Richmond dealerships.”

          You probably should have narc’d on him then.

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            Don’t think I didn’t try on both of the occasions that I sat with the FIS while he was getting and then raising his security clearances. The first time was under Bush and the second time under Obama. The people doing the screening didn’t care a bit that they were giving security clearance to a regular ecstasy user who fantasized about killing the president and was careless about who he let know that he was a member of the Ecological Liberation Front. The federal government has not been accountable to the citizenry for longer than you might think. The guy who interviewed me under Obama warned me that the subject had access to anything and everything I said about him.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          Tin foil is in the mail!

          • 0 avatar
            ToolGuy

            Tin foil hat is counterproductive:
            https://www.howtogeek.com/114037/researchers-prove-tin-foil-hats-boost-receptivity-to-government-signals/

          • 0 avatar
            Arthur Dailey

            Not one person has ever been abducted by aliens or attacked by tigers while wearing their tinfoil hat.

            So statistically are you safer from these incidents if you do wear one?

            I have a friend who has lined parts of his house to prevent radio waves from entering. Guess I should send him this link.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @ToolGuy – that would explain the worsening of paranoid symptoms. Maybe those doing the study inadvertently used Chinese tinfoil from Huawei?

        • 0 avatar
          Spartan

          “I used to work with an eco-terrorist who is now a member of the deep state with a high security clearance.”

          “He is a Science Officer within the Laboratories division of U.S. Customs and Border Protection in Washington, D.C. and has co-authored a book on pyrotechnics. He’s also the most outspokenly anti-American person I’ve ever met.”

          It is highly unlikely (read: incredibly unlikely) that this guy you’re talking about has a clearance (Secret or TS-SCI) with that sort of record for being anti-American. I’m pretty certain he’s be caught if he was burning Excursions at dealerships.

          Please tell these ridiculous stories to someone who will believe you. I can only hope that is a very small number of people here on this site for everyone’s sake. So people, please don’t be naïve.

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            Everything I’ve written here is a combination of simple provable facts and things this guy has said or suggested in my presence. The only exception is the ecstasy use, which was told to me by a mutual friend who went snowboarding with him. If you can’t believe it, that is because you aren’t as clever and aware as you think you are.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            I’m guessing “*suggested* in my presence” is being interpreted as fact.

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            Perhaps he is a liar, but if so then he picked some horribly incriminating things to lie about. Most of the time he came off as a true believer of the most hateful ideologies conceived by man.

        • 0 avatar
          Art Vandelay

          So, just to be clear, in the world of security clearances, if he wasn’t given a polygraph then it wasn’t a “high level” clearance.

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            The people doing the background check couldn’t have cared less about the things this guy was into. What would any polygraph they administered have mattered?

          • 0 avatar
            Chi-One

            US government background investigations do not require nor permit a polygraph at any level. I used to conduct BIs.

          • 0 avatar
            Art Vandelay

            It matters because if he didn’t have one, his clearance wasn’t of a particularly “High Level” At CBP that would make sense.

            None of what you are saying makes a bit of sense. If there were credible evidence that what you told them is true, he wouldn’t have a clearance. For the non-political class (And I mean Senators and what not…not Staffers), Security Clearances are serious business and it doesn’t take a whole lot to lose it.

            Furthermore, why on God’s green Earth would he list someone as a reference for his SSBI that he had admitted himself to be an America hating terrorist to.

            I know how this world works, and I believe you are full of it.

            But I’ll tell you what, as someone who does care and admittedly do, and again, knows how all this works, if you are that concerned I would be more than happy to put you in touch with some good people that I absolutely 100 percent know who care.

          • 0 avatar
            Art Vandelay

            and Chi one, you are 100 percent wrong. There are 2 levels of Poly’s…one is quite common, the other less so.

          • 0 avatar
            Art Vandelay

            https://www.govexec.com/management/2018/12/what-you-need-know-taking-polygraph/153410/

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            “Furthermore, why on God’s green Earth would he list someone as a reference for his SSBI that he had admitted himself to be an America hating terrorist to.”

            I was his coworker in Virginia in 2006 when he applied for his job with the government and that is how they found me to interview me. When he was checked for a higher clearance about five years later, they tracked me down in California to talk to me, probably because of what I told them that they didn’t act on in 2006. I have no idea why they went through the trouble, since his current position is the one I listed above. I have no idea if he had a polygraph or not. How would I know? I haven’t spoken to him since we stopped working together, nor do I want to. Of our two mutual friends at the time, I am now much closer to one who also doesn’t speak to him anymore and I have lost touch with the other.

            Who are these people who care? I still have friends in the Navy and Marines, and even some of them are more interested in an exit plan than doing anything for the good of the country at this point. Incidentally, I have quite a few friends who had exceptionally high security clearances in the mid-2000s. Were they polygraphed? I had some other keyboard warrior diptwits tell me that I’m not even supposed to know about the existence of their security clearance level, so I can’t be bothered going into details I once did in these discussions. All these people are very real and are either people I don’t want to damage or people I don’t want to be sued by. I don’t remember my friends who had the president’s life in their hands ever mentioning a polygraph, and I lived with two of them at the times of their screenings.

        • 0 avatar
          Spartan

          @ToddAtlasF1

          OK, Boomer

          • 0 avatar

            I know two guys who actually do work for the Govt. One does high in the sky, one does below the water. Both have high clearances, and both have advised me of a very invasive lie detector test (yup, the electrode goes there…), and frequent drug testing….along with very strict background checks
            There is a reason #45 had to exempt his co-conspirators from Security Checks by executive order….

  • avatar
    MoparRocker74

    People are gonna judge you no matter what you do, so you might as well just do whatever you please. Life is too short to spend it watering yourself down to the end goal of appeasing other people. Take a good look at the type of person who has time invested in judging other people who are just enjoying their lives. I don’t care if we’re talking about the crotchety old biddies on the HOA board, tofu-eating tree huggers, beauracrat regulators…that type of person is coming from a position of misery. They hate seeing other people happy and enjoying themselves, the only way they can get satisfaction is by bringing you down to their pit of misery, and no level of that will ever be enough. Killjoys and losers. If you have no enemies in life, you’re just not taking a strong enough stance.

  • avatar
    EquipmentJunkie

    I bought a brand-new, Dodge Ram 2500 in December 1993. I spent 6-months being educated on what Dodge was doing and became convinced that their new truck and campaign was more than just schtick and fact that the “The Rules Have Changed”. I liked the new Dodge’s looks and didn’t care if nobody else did. A couple years later Dodge had convinced several hundred thousand other people like myself. In that case, I rolled the dice and won.

    Tesla rolled the dice and lost. It tells me that Elon has a bunch of “Yes” men surrounding him. Tesla has a long road ahead of them to convince potential buyers to buy the ugliest vehicle they ever saw. Tesla will need to bring some serious content to overcome the looks. Doug DeMuro and I both thought the Cybertruck was a PR ruse and figured that the “real” truck would soon appear. Sadly, this was not the case.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      “Tesla rolled the dice and lost.”

      Well, they do have over 200,000 (albeit cheap at $100) reservations for the Cybertruck. An electric F-150 would only receive a fraction of that.

      • 0 avatar
        EquipmentJunkie

        I know. We’ll see…

      • 0 avatar
        SilverCoupe

        So they raised $20,000,000 in a few days, at very little cost? Maybe that’s the real reason for this early truck intro!

      • 0 avatar
        TMA1

        An electric F-150 wouldn’t need a deposit. Anyone interested in one could just go down to a Ford dealership and buy one, because hundreds of thousands will have been built in the first year of availability.

      • 0 avatar
        Art Vandelay

        “Well, they do have over 200,000 (albeit cheap at $100) reservations for the Cybertruck. An electric F-150 would only receive a fraction of that
        Why would you say that…200,000 is a fraction of F-150 sales. Also I saw only about 40 percent of those reserving a Tesla go through with it.

        Also, don’t you see it as odd that they cut the normal “reservation fee” from 500 to 100 for this?

        • 0 avatar
          SCE to AUX

          My point about the F-150 EV is that they’ll never have 200k people show interest in that on Day One.

          Yes, it does strike me as odd that the reservation fee is so low.

          Maybe they’re trying to lower the barriers to entry for new buyers, or maybe they’re artificially pumping up the interest by using a different metric than the Model 3 and Y had.

          Incidentally, the initial Model 3 reservation was $1000. I placed mine sight unseen, then got the money back a few days after I requested it 2 year2 later. But now, if you order a Model 3 or preorder a Model Y, you’re in for a non-refundable $2500 deposit.

        • 0 avatar
          Chi-One

          Hi Art,
          I appreciate what you said but I stand by what I said. Some agencies may require a polygraph for applicants as a matter of their policy. But, none of the five BI’s and their corresponding clearances require a poly.

          • 0 avatar
            Art Vandelay

            So there are background investigations that simply make sure you aren’t a criminal or have a bunch of DUI’s, then there are the Single Scope Background Investigations for national security positions. Some of those billets require a polygraph. The scope of the poly depends on the billet.

  • avatar
    MrIcky

    I didn’t choose my vehicles to make any social statement, I bought them for my own personal needs and/or enjoyment. But then, I realized that a lot of people do read their own social values into my purchases. I don’t care much but it’s interesting. I can see how some people wouldn’t enjoy being pre-judged when you roll up.

    • 0 avatar
      Imagefont

      A friend of mine told me that people buy cars for the lifestyle they wish they had. Probably true for many, certainly not all.

      This silly show car/concept will never be built anyway so it doesn’t matter.

      • 0 avatar
        JMII

        “A friend of mine told me that people buy cars for the lifestyle they wish they had.”

        Given the number of vehicles sold with the Track, Sport or Off Road package this seems accurate. Its not about what you need, its about what you want. Almost nobody needs bullet proof windows, but now that they can order some they can check that box then brag about it.

        • 0 avatar
          Art Vandelay

          As one who for a time routinely operated vehicles with bulletproof windows (none of this 9mm BS…I am talking 7 panes worth of 7.62 stopping power), I can promise you, that is a lifestyle nobody desires.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            Unbreakable glass would be great for those living in areas with a high incidence of “smash and grab” crime.

        • 0 avatar

          North Americans, so spoiled. I saw a lot of bulletproof BMW SUV in Mexico City. It isn’t for show or to impress the neighbors, it is to get your kid to school and back un-kidnapped.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Mexico is also located in North America, you may not be, but it certainly is located on the continent.

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            You always wonder how ignorant someone has to be to still be talking trash about Trump.

          • 0 avatar

            Guilty as to my bad geography, but it is interesting to see, when you travel, how different societies handle things…in Mexico, the well off are well insulated, mostly and live a very nice life. The vast majority of the poor have a much different reality, with a far greater gap than here in the US. Kidnapping and theft are common, and if you are well off, there is a wall around your home with razor wire at the top. Bodyguards are a common sight. If you choose to drive an expensive car, you ARE a target for the small but brutal criminal element, and the body guard and armor are just to be safe. You would not normally DD a flashy car in Mexico City…oh, I saw a few toys, but most stay low key.

            As to the GRU asset on 1600 Pennsylvania Ave ? Fox State TV is a hell of a drug…

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            ‘As to the GRU asset on 1600 Pennsylvania Ave ? Fox State TV is a hell of a drug…”

            The traitor who said he could be more flexible after the 2012 election on a hot mic? He’s in the septic tank of history. The murderess who sold us out to Uranium One? She lost. There was an election in 2016 and someone who doesn’t hate the American people won. Enjoy the temporary reprieve.

      • 0 avatar
        whynotaztec

        “people buy cars for the lifestyle they wish they had”

        guilty as charged

  • avatar
    Nick_515

    Steph, you sound like you slept right through SOC 100 in college.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    I’ve had 3 Pintos, a Fiat, 4 minivans, a hybrid, 2 EVs, and a host of other cars.

    All served a particular purpose when I got them, but making a social statement was never one of them. In fact, one of the many reasons I balked on the Model 3 last year was the badge statement. Maybe next time.

  • avatar
    Thomas Kreutzer

    I have never thought one iota about the way society perceives me, the way I dress or what I drive.

    I’m not sure if that makes me totally cool or just clueless…

  • avatar
    rpn453

    This Cybertruck needs to be lifted so it’s unsafe to other drivers in a collision, have external speakers installed so everyone can hear it for a mile, and have a two stroke engine running in the bed so everyone following has to breathe its raw hydrocarbons.

    Only then will it be anti-social enough to compete with the brodozers, Harleys, and catless Subarus.

  • avatar
    ToolGuy

    Regarding the Tesla Cybertruck (funny how quickly the “naming” controversy died down – lol), posting this here for future reference.

    5 Stages of Grief (Kübler-Ross model):
    1) Denial
    2) Anger
    3) Bargaining
    4) Depression
    5) Acceptance

    (Some commenters appear to be firmly in stage 1. Many in stage 2.) [Categorization of the staff writers is an exercise left to the reader.]

  • avatar
    Vulpine

    I don’t think “anti-social” describes the Cybertruck at all, though admittedly its appearance is highly polarizing…for now. Rather, the truck is pro-social simply because people will be clamoring to look at it and find out about it simply because it is so different. Any time something really different comes along, people tend to crowd around it. That also means that if it does decently well in the overall market for that type of vehicle, other brands start adopting aspects of that appearance. Certainly the Rivian already includes one obvious aspect–to the point of questioning which brand carried that headlamp concept first, Tesla or Rivian? (Who knows? Maybe Tesla copied Rivian with that. I wouldn’t argue against it.)

    I do think the unibody or “space frame” technologies need to be studied and possibly upgraded. People complain about how fragile cars have become and the fact that for insurance purposes they are ‘totaled’ quite often even in what would be otherwise a very minor collision. I see the potential for this “armored” body design to be more readily repairable at lower relative cost than the conventional version. If so, we could see lower insurance rates as they won’t need to pay full value for the car every time.

    • 0 avatar
      Art Vandelay

      “I see the potential for this “armored” body design to be more readily repairable at lower relative cost than the conventional version.”

      Perhaps less likely to need repair, but should it need it, I can’t see any way that it isn’t dramatically more expensive to repair, especially should the body be unpainted.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        Would repairing stainless steel be an issue?

      • 0 avatar
        Vulpine

        @Art: Read what I said again. The truck would be REPAIRABLE where most other vehicles would be written off. That’s a major savings to the owner AND the insurance companies.

        • 0 avatar
          mcs

          You probably wouldn’t need oem parts to fix it. Just buy a stainless flat panel, cut out the damaged section, weld in the new, then sand it down.

        • 0 avatar
          Art Vandelay

          But the cost of the repair is what gets them written off in most cases, not that it can’t physically be fixed. The PITA that is bodywork on stainless is typically why you see painted Deloreans from time to time. You have to replace the entire panel to fix it.

          If these are actually painted (I think most production models will be), it is less of an issue.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            Try again, Art. Read what I wrote. “I see the potential for this “armored” body design to be more readily repairable at lower relative cost than the conventional version.”

            Relative cost, Art. Of course, you are quite aware that with a unibody design, that “space frame” made of stamped sheet metal is easy to bend in a collision and next to impossible to repair–that’s WHY the cost of repair is what gets them written off–they’re flat impossible to repair under most circumstances. In the case of the CYBRTRCK it will be a case of unbolting or cutting off the damaged panel and bolting/welding a new one in its place–a fraction of the time, even though the panel itself may be expensive. Overall relative cost of the repair will be well under 50% of the cost of the vehicle.

            Do, please, try to pay attention.

            Oh, and a simple belt sander can easily give the new panel the ‘brushed metal’ look that is probably topped with clear coat for protection against corrosion. (Or a matte clear coat for those wanting the ‘flat’ appearance.)

  • avatar
    TimK

    Vehicle design, like any industrial design language tends to reflect the prevailing social norms. The Cybertruck is no more weird or controversial than the insectoid Prius my 79 year old neighbor drives.

    And another point — timing is everything. TTAC runs announcements of new EVs and 99% of them never see a showroom floor. This new Tesla EV truck is *three years* away from its first sale. VW, Ford, GM, Porsche all made “electrification” claims, so where are the vehicles?

    Do any of the TTAC writers ever ask the company PR flacks that question?

  • avatar
    PeterKK

    If you are not married to me, I have not the time, money, nor inclination to give a flying rat fart what your opinion of my car choice is. Not even sorry about it. This machine of perpetual outrage will go on either way, sadly.

  • avatar
    Arthur Dailey

    Posting at the bottom rather than replying to multiple threads.

    1) Back in the 70’s did work for an organization that had very strict rules regarding the hierarchy of company cars/car allowances. All GM through the same dealer. Some guy got an Olds, using some of his own money to make up the difference, when he was only in the Pontiac grade. He had to return the Olds.
    2) Nice thought about this being a ‘stealth’ vehicle. It certainly has a number of the requirements. Regarding the accuracy of mobile radar, the father of a friend of mine was among the team that invented it. He was able to discuss this with any judge when he received a speeding ticket and have the ticket withdrawn, rather than publicizing/making public its failings/foibles.
    3) I once consulted for a ‘clown’ who selected staff largely based on their vehicle. When interviewing someone he would send one of his cronies to look at their vehicle. If it was dirty or cluttered inside or out he would not hire them. If a male applicant drove a minivan he would not hire them, as they ‘were not masculine enough’. If a female driving a minivan he would not hire them as ‘they would not care enough about their appearance’. He hired my services when I arrived in a new Jeep Grand Cherokee, that being ‘macho’. Luckily I was only associated with him for a few months.
    4) If someone judges a person based on their choice of vehicles, then I assume that they are extremely shallow or overcompensating for something. My personal prejudice, usually proven correct.
    3)

  • avatar
    Mackie

    Antisocial? This truck is pretty damn talkative if you ask me. A downright media whore.

  • avatar
    dal20402

    Cars that make me think bad thoughts about their drivers before any antisocial driving behavior occurs:

    – Any exhaust spewing particulates or stinky VOCs. This applies equally to coal-rollers; WRX and GTI bros that remove their cats for alleged +2 hp; and drivers of old crappy $hitboxes that can’t be bothered to keep them in tune.
    – Lifts. If you hit anyone (whether inside or outside a car) with your truck, your bumper is going to hit them square in the head. Your lights are making the road undrivable for everyone else at night. If you need that sick breakover angle for Moab, take your damn jeep or truck there on a trailer.
    – Tinted or covered lights. No, your eBay LED bulbs don’t make up the difference. Your lights are invisible and you deserve to be rear-ended.
    – Bald tires or obviously worn suspension. Your 4000-lb. metal missile was dangerous enough before you neglectfully made it prone to randomly changing direction at high speed at any moment.

  • avatar
    How_Embarrassing_4You

    This is funny. Anyone profiling and stereotyping people who drive other types of vehicles in this thread while giving this one a pass? HILARIOUS.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    I really don’t care what others think I will drive what I like. If I were in sales or a job that required me to be seen in a certain type of vehicle then I would care but when I drive my vehicle and park it to take the Express Bus then I don’t want a vehicle that will attract a lot of attention nor do I want a newer vehicle. Years ago I worked for a company where many employees were required to drive a newer vehicle and maintain a certain image. Most of those that were required to drive a certain type of vehicle were in debt up to their eyeballs. I would rather live debt free than to worry about when my next paycheck is coming. I make a very good salary now and can for the most part afford any vehicle but as I have gotten older I no longer have the desire for those vehicles that I wanted when I was young.

  • avatar

    The car mag writer Brett Berk sums this up very well.

    “All Cars are Drag”.

    I had this experience over and over when I was with the classic car club of manhattan. Drive my 08 beater truck to the club. Pick up Aston Martin/911 GT3/Nissan GT-R. Now, I’m the same moron who drove there in my dented truck, but the attitude of other drivers changed quite a bit. Many of the cars had loud exhausts, to the point I used Bose Airplane headphones for the GT4….a loud car attracts attention, and gives you a 15 mph perceived speed increase on local roads…everyone thinks you are doing 45 plus, even if the speedo is just below 30.
    My current car is a four door sedan, in a duller color, with no badges. I have learned over time that the best way to go is stealth-Q ship. I have a switchable exhaust, which we call “doochebag mode”…I only turn it on when passing the WRX with fart cans, but otherwise leave it in quiet.

    I would have a flashy car for fun, but it would be a second car, and I’d know I was being showy between the endless boring grey/gray/white/gray minivans….

    All Cars Are Drag.

  • avatar

    You have to be ready for the tail gaters, the wanna race guys, and especially the passive aggressive who will block you, when you drive a bright orange Porsche GT….it is actually the other drivers who either act out or lose their minds with envy/annoyance/jealousy that pose a greater hazard….

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