I got to see the Tesla Cybertruck in New York City with my own eyes and it still seems unreal

Posted by Paul Braren on May 11 2021 (updated on May 12 2021) in
  • Efficiency
  • EVs
  • Tesla
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    If you just want to skip to the video or photos below, that's ok, I understand, just be sure to enjoy them in full screen.

    Late on Friday May 7th, pics like this lit up Twitter. How in the heck will I explain to my wife that a road trip to see a pickup truck is necessary?

    I spotted this tweet late on Friday May 7th, showing the Cybertruck cruising around in New York City. It seems Tesla was finally delivering on Elon's promise of a Cybertruck appearance somewhere on the east coast. Luck would have it that his SNL appearance was bringing him to NYC anyway, what better week than for Tesla to drive that beast through Times Square for the follow-car to get some unique footage? Luck would have it that I live only 2 hours away. So my late night brain started thinking.

    I knew my wife and I had some plans already for Saturday morning. So I didn't say anything. But once I found out from Owen Sparks that Elon confirmed directly to him that the truck was there through Sunday, suddenly a roadtrip looked reasonable. Owen is the high school student who attended the EV Club of CT's Model 3 Police Cruiser event back in 2020. He's gone off to college now, he was tied up in Rhode Island. Since he couldn't get to NYC, I offered to livestream my visit to him, and anybody else that cared to watch. He accepted. The mission now needed to be accomplished, and our lawn's excessively tall grass will have to wait to be mowed some other day.

    I confess that we have no need for a Cybertruck in my immediate family, my wife and I tend to keep our cars for over 10 years. We are quite happy with our two EVs. I also know how important this sector of the automotive industry is, especially here in the US. It's about time pickup trucks go electric, and the high torque and instant power delivery will very likely win over nearly every single person who test drives one, regardless of the brand. It's also fun for me to contribute content to the EV Club of Connecticut's nascent YouTube Channel, where you'll also find our recent Ford Mustang Mach-E and VW ID.4 videos.

    We stopped by after the Tesla Tarrytown - Grand Opening & EV Car Show. Special thanks to Tesla Owner's Club of Connecticut's Will Cross for the heads-up that this was happening!

    To my surprise, my wife actually said yes. She was willing to accompany me on this short trip to the big city, her first in years, and my first in about 15 months. I just had to agree to not talk about electric cars and trucks the whole way there and back. Deal! She was vaccinated back in January, and I completed my 2nd dose 3+ weeks ago. Of course we wore masks during our entire brief NYC stay.

    As we drove, heavy rain started, but we stopped by the Grand Opening of the new Tarrytown NY Tesla location on our way to a brief Supercharge in Tarrytown, and we needed to get some food anyway. Special thanks to Will Cross from the Tesla Owner's Club of Connecticut, who gave me the heads-up that this event was happening.

    Arrival in New York City

    The Meatpacking District / Chelsea.
    Breathing through a mask came in handy it turned out, since this area of Manhattan sure had a lot of burning weed smell from passersby, perhaps in celebration of some very recent changes in the law. Interestingly, neither of us can recall seeing anybody walking on the streets or in the Tesla store without their mask on, although an uncovered nose was spotted once or twice.

    It was quite nice to see life starting to return back to a new normal. The skies cleared just as we arrived. I still dodged people that got too close out of habit, but the anxiety that's tied to my 14+ months of (late evening) supermarket for the families is subsiding. It was good day, especially once we found that Chelsea Market bathrooms were opened to the public, with a well-spaced and protected entrance and exits.

    I noticed some interesting new architecture as drove in and as we walked. I also hadn't noticed this large, repurposed Google building before.

    Oh dang, that looks good on the streets of NYC. Too bad I didn't crouch down to obscure the pile of garbage behind that shiny new Model Y.

    Parking in New York City

    Edison Park used this wheel cover before parking my Model 3 to a spot about 25' away.

    When I was in Manhattan at 1 and 2 Penn for my roles at VMware (and once for my role at Dell), I'd usually park at LM 29 Park, LLC, 211 W 29th St, New York, NY 10001 near Penn Station. That location was just too far away for this trip. So I used Edison Park Fast, 161 10th Ave, New York, NY 10011 that was only 0.4 miles away from Tesla at 860 Washington St, New York, NY 10014. Tesla's valet mode is great for such occasions where entrusting somebody else with your car is essential, since they generally don't allow self-parking in NYC garages, and certainly not in car elevator situations like this one. We were able to lock our valuables in the frunk and glove box, set the PIN for Valet mode on the app, then hand over the "key", the Tesla branded NFC key card, in a card holder so the attendant could hang it from his key hook. This mode only allows modest acceleration and low speeds, and disallows opening the glove box, frunk, or any personalize menus on the screen. More details here. Nice! Competitive EV makers would be wise to implement something similar.

    This lot was the only one around with decent reviews. I didn't need EV charging, especially since I never planned to be parked for more than 2 hours anyway. I tipped the driver at pickup, once I saw that our car was in the exact condition in which we left it.

    My Silver Model 3 had a White Model 3 friend right next to it.

    Tesla Showroom in New York City

    We arrived at about 6pm, an hour before closing. There was good crowd control and decent inter-pod spacing while on line. A Tesla employees checked us in using a tablet, requesting our name and email address. The line moved fast, with each group having about 10 minutes to check out the Cybertruck. While we were in line, I got online via the Tesla showroom Wi-Fi and via my AT&T LTE too. While both seemed to test out at great speeds down and up, the YouTube app kept failing to keep the Live event connected. Even worse, it insisted on a Portrait orientation during each of my numerous attempts to go and stay live, capped at a mere 720p. I'm so sorry about all that. But gladly, finally, my (dual SIM) iPhone's Verizon 5G held up, and the rest of the Live event went fairly well. I got some video at some unusual angles, including the below the front (new camera!) and rear (trailer hitch panel!), which I later learned was kind of a big deal.


    Again, this was a mad rush to grab what I could, in hindsight, focusing on more photos and 4K video probably would have been better. Live and learn.

    While we stood there in front of this behemoth, I asked my wife what she thought of it. She simply said "it's big."


    May 08 2021 - TinkerTry YouTube Channel - Close look at and under the Tesla Cybertruck in New York City on May 8 2021. This brief 4K walk-around views of the Tesla Cybertruck, including the new camera under the front bumper, and the trailer hitch cover under the rear bumper. I'm sorry for the sound issue.

    For this article only, I agree to allowing the use of my photos if you are sure to provide photo credit to Paul Braren, as well as linking back to this article as the source. There is no other acceptable use.

    Not quite as widely spaced as I would have preferred, but not as bad is it appears, and we were only waiting for about 20 minutes.
    While waiting in line, we could see inside. C'mon, I had to create some sort of thumbnail to tweet, announcing the livestream. At least I spared you from a shouty ALL CAPS thumbnail!
    Let's get those requisite, self-indulgent selfies done first. Yes, the mask is the only reason my ears stick out like that. Sure.
    After thirty years of marriage, you would think I'd know better than to cajole my wife into using her phone to take a picture of me livestreaming. I have no defense, it just seemed a good idea at the time. It wasn't. Very cringe-sworthy.
    Tried to use my 2.5X lens wherever possible, to reduce distortion. This required stepping back to the far corners of the store and waiting for a clear shot.
    Close cropping helps reduce the distracting background. Sure wish that rope wasn't in the way.
    This is a prototype, but generally Tesla tends to meet or exceed whatever they display at announcement in terms of specs and looks. One notable difference is that there will be no door handles on the actual production Cybertruck.
    iPhone 12 Plus Max having issues with proper exposure of stainless steel. Green line is a lens-coating artifact induced by the headlight bar. C'mon Apple, we need an algorithm for automatic Cybertruck photo artifact elimination.
    In-camera editing to darken things up, looks a bit better. 2.5X zoom.
    1.0X zoom. Giant tires appear to shrink, kind of like the recent photo of the Carters.
    0.5X zoom. Giant tires appear to vanish.
    One of the very few photos in existence of the underside of the front bumper. Sorry it's not clearer, it's a still frame from my livestream that limited me to 720p video. It's clear enough to see the front-facing camera. I do wonder how long that can possibly stay clean, a concern the GMC Hummer will also have.
    Here's a view from behind, you can clearly see the cover for the trailer hitch.
    No side-view mirrors on this prototype. Only a side-view cameras cleverly tucked into the wheel arch cover above the front fenders. Image grabbed from my 720p video.
    Time for the next group to enter, perhaps the last group of the day. So glad we barely made it on time!
    We stopped to eat take-out at Pepe's Pizza in Waterbury Connecticut on the way home, arriving around 10pm, with the car ready for its next adventure by 3am. Overnight charging is a wonderful thing, setting out each day ready for whatever.


    Free Supercharging: If you find this article of value and decide to order a Tesla, please consider using this ts.la/paul68544 referral link when placing your order so you and I both get 1,000 miles of free Supercharging. If you order Solar, it's a $250 award after system activation.

    Disclosure: My family owns no stock in Tesla. Tesla doesn't advertise at TinkerTry, or anywhere else, and this is not a sponsored post. We financed the purchase of two Tesla Model 3s, replacing my 2006 Honda Civic Hybrid in December of 2018 and replacing my wife's 2005 Honda Civic EX in December of 2019. These big moves to an all electric household were an expression of our mutual desire to go green, avoid gasoline, be safe, have fun, and save money in the long run. Mostly for my job, I drive a lot, 25,000 miles in 2019 for example, and I thoroughly enjoy sharing what I've learned with you. I hope you can tell!

    See also



    • Elon Musk teases Tesla Cybertruck update: ‘There will be no handle’
      Mar 25 2021 by Fred Lambert at Electrek

      Over the last year since the unveiling and leading up to the start of production, Tesla has been modifying the electric pickup truck.

      Unlike most automakers who unveil concept vehicles and later production versions that are extremely toned down, Tesla tends to bring production vehicles to market that closely resemble their original concepts.





    Diversity of opinions makes the world much more interesting, thanks for sharing yours!

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    I'm happy so many people will soon be grinning, when they press the go pedal on their first EV drive.

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