Outspoken Tesla boss Elon Musk admits the Cybertruck was designed to be different, had no traditional customer feedback. 
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If you’re wondering why the Tesla Cybertruck looks like it was designed by a school kid – with its sharp and unconventional lines – we now know why.

Tesla boss Elon Musk has revealed the electric vehicle specialist did not gauge customer reaction before signing off the final design, as is normal practice in the car industry.

“Customer research? We just made a car we thought was awesome and looks super weird,” Musk told industry journal Automotive News USA in an exclusive interview.

“I just wanted to make a futuristic battle tank — something that looks like it could come out of Blade Runner or Aliens or something like that but was also highly functional,” he said.

Musk said the design is deliberately provocative, and if the Tesla Cybertruck doesn’t sell well enough, the fallback position is to make another version shaped like a regular pick-up.

“I wasn't super worried about (the design) because if it turns out nobody wants to buy a weird-looking truck, we'll build a normal truck, no problem,” Musk told Automotive News USA.

“There’s lots of normal trucks out there that look pretty much the same; you can hardly tell the difference. And sure, we could just do some copycat truck; that's easy. So that's our fallback strategy.”

Musk said Tesla has taken 200,000 orders from people who placed a $100 deposit after the Cybertruck concept was unveiled in November 2019.

He again outlined some of the Tesla Cybertruck’s features, while taking a swipe at the market leader for the past 43 years, the Ford F-150.

“It can be a better sports car than a Porsche 911, a better truck than an F-150, and it's armoured and looks sort of kick-ass from the future,” Musk told the newspaper. “That was the goal, recognising this could be a complete failure.”

Tesla boldly showed the Cybertruck winning a tug-of-war with the Ford F-150 when the concept vehicle was unveiled last year, and Musk doubled-down on the claims made for the electric pick-up.

“We’re really, fundamentally making this truck as a North American ass-kicker, basically,” Musk told Automotive News USA.

“The goal is to kick the most amount of ass possible with this truck. We want it to be something you could use to tow a boat, a horse trailer, pull tree stumps out of the ground, go off-roading and you don't have to worry about scratching the paint because there is no paint. You could just be smashing boulders and be fine.”

Musk also revealed the Tesla Cybertruck would come with an on-board generator, a built-in air compressor, “bulletproof” body panels and shatterproof glass, although he did smash two windows during the original demonstration last year.

Musk also repeated his “apocalypse” line, which he shared when TV host, comedian and car buff Jay Leno took the Cybertruck for a test drive earlier this year.

”It’s probably helpful in the apocalypse,” Musk told Automotive News USA. “Things are seeming more apocalyptic these days. Let me tell you, the truck you want in the apocalypse is the Cybertruck.”