Making of Tesla ‘Truckla’ pickup truck: Behind the scenes with Rich Rebuilds

(Credit: Rich Benoit/YouTube)

Tesla DIY enthusiast and rebel mechanic Rich Benoit has worked on a number of interesting projects involving the electric car maker’s vehicles in the past. But over the past year, Rich, who runs YouTube’s Rich Rebuilds channel, was involved in the design and creation of a literal one-of-a-kind electric car: fellow YouTube influencer Simone Giertz’s “Truckla,” a heavily-modified Tesla Model 3 that was converted into a coupe utility vehicle.

In a recent video, Benoit provided a deep dive on how the Model 3’s rear was transformed from a sedan to a full pickup bed. Having worked with Teslas in the past (including, among others, a horribly-flooded Model S), Benoit was tasked with building the bed and its mockup. He also worked on the vehicle’s high-voltage components, its safety systems, and other electronic features.

Despite the Model 3 pickup appearing as if a part of its rear was simply taken off and converted into a bed, Benoit emphasized that there was actually a ton of careful planning involved when they were building the coupe utility vehicle. Each cut was precise, and particular car was placed in ensuring that every feature of the car, such as its rear sensors and airbags (to name a few) were not compromised.

A lot of reinforcements were designed and fitted into Truckla during its buildout, making it very strong for a utility vehicle of its size. A sturdy roll bar was installed, and multiple reinforcements were fitted on Truckla’s bed and tailgate, allowing it to carry a decent load. Commenting on the completed modified all-electric vehicle, Rich noted that Truckla, in its full, DIY glory, is built very well.

Truckla’s faux commercial has garnered 4.1 million views on YouTube as of writing, and Simone Giertz’s account of the vehicle’s creation has been viewed 3.7 million times since it went online three days ago. This all but hints at the interest surrounding a Tesla pickup truck. Fortunately for the electric car maker, an actual Tesla Truck is expected to be unveiled later this year. Musk has been quite candid about Tesla’s upcoming pickup, which he describes as a “cyberpunk” vehicle that will not look out of place in the Blade Runner franchise.

Tesla’s pickup truck will most likely be loaded to the teeth with tech; that much is hinted at by Elon Musk. Nevertheless, the CEO has also noted that the vehicle will start at $49,000 at most. “You should be able to buy a really great truck for $49k or less,” Musk said. Elon Musk also confirmed that the cryptic teaser of the vehicle that was included in the Model Y unveiling was the truck’s front.

Watch Rich Rebuilds’ look at the making of Truckla in the video below.

Simon Alvarez: Simon is a reporter with a passion for electric cars and clean energy. Fascinated by the world envisioned by Elon Musk, he hopes to make it to Mars (at least as a tourist) someday.
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