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Musk and Rogan covered a variety of topics, all of which were related to the development of the CEO’s numerous projects that are aimed toward developing sustainable energy, revolutionizing passenger transportation, and the prospect of providing humans the option of life on other planets.
In the previous episodes, Rogan and Musk talked about a wide variety of subjects, and the third appearance was no different. Rogan seemed extremely interested in getting information from Musk regarding Tesla’s upcoming product launches, including the next-gen Roadster and Cybertruck. Additionally, the two also talked about SpaceX, Starlink, and some of Musk’s other projects outside of electric vehicle development.
Interestingly, Rogan indicated that he has never watched a SpaceX rocket land and has relatively no knowledge of what goes into Musk’s company’s development of rockets. However, Musk did cover some tidbits related to the design and development of SpaceX rockets, including the fact that he requested Starship’s tip be pointy because of the Sasha Baron Cohen film, The Dictator.
Musk also detailed SpaceX’s mission to Rogan, along with the need to constantly retrieve data from the company’s frequent launches.
“We’re trying to make life multi-planetary. We’re trying to extend life beyond Earth. In order to do that, you have to have high tonnage to Mars. That means you need a big rocket, and you need to fly a lot.”
Musk detailed the upcoming release of the Roadster, along with the possibility of it hovering when the car is paired with the SpaceX package. The current issue is that figuring out how to make the vehicle hover is not easy, obviously. However, Tesla may need to limit the height at which the vehicle can hover, along with the duration of time it can remain off of the ground. Safety is of utmost importance to Musk as he indicated it would be most responsible to limit the altitude and duration of time spent above the ground.
“I want it to hover. I’m trying to figure out how to make this thing hover, without, you know, killing people. I thought, maybe we could make it hover, but not too high. So maybe it could hover, like, a meter above the ground, or something. So, if you plummet, you blow out the suspension, but you’re not going to die. Maybe, I don’t know, six feet. If we put a height limit on it, it will probably be fine.”
Musk acknowledges that this may ultimately not be possible, but there will be cold-gas thrusters located behind the license plate for some of the fastest acceleration rates ever available on a vehicle.
Additionally, details regarding the Cybertruck’s design revisions were also offered by the Tesla CEO during the interview. Musk already indicated that the Cybertruck design has been finalized during the Q4 2020 Earnings Call. However, the car was subjected to size reductions of “around 3%.”
“That’s pretty much what it [the Cybertruck] will look like, with very small differences. You know, we adjusted the size a few percent. Like around 3% or smaller. You don’t want it to be a couple of inches too big for the tunnel.”
Production is expected to begin in limited quantities later this year, with volume production beginning “hopefully” in 2022, Musk said.
Musk also detailed some early design ideas that could be applied to the Tesla electric van, if it eventually becomes a produced vehicle. Musk stated during the recent Earnings Call that Tesla would likely produce one in the future. Tesla could also equip the van with solar panels due to a van’s flat and large surface area. Musk estimates that 30 additional miles of range could be given every day with the design, if it ever comes to fruition.
Musk told Rogan:
“Now, a van, because you have a big, flat area, that’s actually where solar could start to make a little more sense. You know, because you have a lot of area. You could also have, maybe, a roof where it is solar, and then, when it is stationary, [the roof] goes out and provides shade, and maybe triples your area or something like that. Now, you triple the area, and you have a big, flat surface, you could maybe start charging enough where you start getting like 30 miles a day.”
The full episode of Musk’s third interview with Joe Rogan is available on Spotify here.