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Tesla unveils electric semi truck, vowing to redefine trucking

Tesla unveils electric semi truck, vowing to redefine trucking

Tesla unveils electric semi truck, vowing to redefine trucking
November 17
07:33 2017


SpaceX CEO Elon Musk speaks at the International Astronautical Congress on September 29, 2017 in Adelaide, Australia. Musk detailed the long-term technical challenges that need to be solved in order to support the creation of a permanent, self-sustaining human presence on Mars.

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SpaceX CEO Elon Musk speaks at the International Astronautical Congress on September 29, 2017 in Adelaide, Australia. Musk detailed the long-term technical challenges that need to be solved in order to support the creation of a permanent, self-sustaining human presence on Mars.

In addition, Tesla said each truck will have built-in connectivity that integrates directly with a fleet’s management system to allow routing and remote monitoring.

The Tesla Semi will draw on parts and lessons learned from building the Model S, X and 3. For example, the Tesla Semi will feature four Model 3 electric motors and the touchscreen panels in the cab are the same ones used in the Model 3.

In addition, because the Tesla Semi does not have a large diesel-powered engine, the driver has been pushed farther forward and will ride in a more spacious cab than a traditional Class 8 semi. The first editions of the Tesla Semi do not include a sleeper compartment for truck drivers.

While Musk and his team believe the Tesla Semi will change the trucking industry, Wall Street analysts say its impact will depend on how the economics of the truck work for shipping companies.

One aspect that will get a lot of attention is how quickly the trucks’ batteries will degrade after heavy use that could reach 50,000 miles annually. Bernstein analyst Toni Sacconaghi highlighted the potential issue in a note to investors writing, “While battery degradation has largely ceased to be an investor controversy for Tesla’s consumer vehicles, it may pose a more pertinent risk for the Tesla Semi.”

Even if the numbers behind the Tesla Semi are promising for trucking companies that are hyper-focused on lowering costs, the automaker will have its work cut out winning orders. Four manufacturers dominate the Class 8 truck market, with Daimler’s Freightliner division holding almost 40 percent of the market.



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