Tesla shares surged 4% on Monday after CEO Elon Musk tweeted over the weekend that the company had already obtained 200,000 orders for its futuristic Cybertruck pickup.
The truck, made of stainless steel used in rockets and priced at $39,900 and above, failed to impress Wall Street last week after its “armored glass” windows broke in a launch demonstration and analysts argued the design wouldn’t have mass appeal.
Tesla opened preorders immediately, nevertheless, and allowed potential consumers to book the truck by depositing a completely refundable $100, compared to the $1,000 Tesla charged for booking Model 3 sedans in 2016, drawing the flood of reservations and sending the company’s shares back up on Monday.
Tesla obtained 325,000 orders for the Model 3 in the first week of bookings three years ago, and the preliminary number for the vans recommended preorders may rival that.
Not all orders translate into sales as many are possible eventually to be canceled and money refunded to depositors. Tesla plans to start manufacturing the Cybertruck around late-2021.
The U.S. pickup truck market is among the world’s most valuable car segments and is dominated by Ford, General Motors and Fiat Chrysler.
Technology reviewer Marques Brownlee called the Cybertruck a “tech-world disruptor” and said for Tesla to enter the pick-up truck sector, it had to stand out.
From promoting the features of Cybertruck to taking a dig at Ford’s F-150 pickup truck, Musk has been tweeting rigorously to boost sales since Thursday’s launch.
As a result, he agreed with U.S. regulators to submit his public statements about the firm to vetting by legal counsel. Tesla didn’t respond to inquiries as to whether all of the tweets were vetted.