What really happens during a Cybertruck crash test?

Sep 9, 2023, 12:59 PM UTC
3 mins read
What really happens during a Cybertruck crash test?
(Illustration/GadgetBond, Logo courtesy Tesla)

When it comes to pushing the boundaries of automotive technology, Tesla is a name that constantly comes to mind. Their Cybertruck, with its futuristic design, has been a topic of conversation ever since its unveiling. But before these high-tech marvels hit the road, they undergo extensive safety testing. Recently, a crashed Cybertruck prototype was spotted on a car hauler, shedding light on its journey through a ditch rollover test.

This fascinating discovery came to our attention through a TikTok video (now deleted) that was later archived and shared on the Cybertruck Owners Club forum by a user known as Old Spice. Initially, the video was posted by @ctllogisticsinc, revealing a curious detail: the Cybertruck was en route to MGA Research Corporation.

Video posted by @ctllogisticsinc on TikTok.

So, what’s the deal with MGA Research Corporation? Well, they specialize in various vehicular safety tests, and the fact that Tesla sent their prototype there tells us a lot about their commitment to safety. The test that caught our eye is called ditch testing, which simulates a common rollover scenario often seen on roads with steep embankments. MGA’s setup includes hydraulic rams that can adjust the ditch wall angle from 35 to 55 degrees, making it possible to replicate different real-world conditions. They can also tweak the angle at which the vehicle approaches the ditch wall, ranging from 5 to 20 degrees.

But let’s get back to the damaged Cybertruck prototype. The video and screenshots reveal some interesting aftermath. The roof is noticeably bent from the impact, airbags have deployed as intended, and there’s visible damage to the windows and trim elements.

Perhaps the most conspicuous damage is the absence of the “bulletproof” rear windows, presumably shattered during the test. The massive front windshield, though cracked, remains intact, a testament to the Cybertruck’s structural strength. Curtain airbags have also done their job by deploying in response to the impact.

The video also provides a glimpse inside the vehicle, showing the rear seat with its accompanying display, the central armrest with cup holders, and a flat floor design. Curiously, several trim pieces that seem to belong to the wheel arches are scattered in the bed, or as Tesla calls it, the “Vault.”

On the same car hauler, there’s another Cybertruck, but it’s covered up. Unfortunately, the video doesn’t give any hints about what this second pickup may have undergone.

It’s crucial to note that a vehicle’s appearance after a crash isn’t a definitive indicator of its safety. Real insights come from crash test dummies and an array of sensors that provide data on potential injuries in real-world accidents. So, while this damaged prototype offers a fascinating peek behind the scenes, it’s not the whole safety story.

Interestingly, just last month, another Cybertruck prototype made headlines. It was seemingly unscathed and had a handwritten note on one of its windows proudly declaring it “Completed Crash Ready.”

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