The Tesla Semi is set to deliver its first customers before the end of the year, five years after Elon Musk originally unveiled it. This is significant because the commencement of the rollout will begin a process of real-world validation, verifying whether electrification is suitable for heavy vehicles, which are typically powered by diesel fuel. If it is successful, it might pave the way for more environmentally friendly transportation by replacing noisy, emissions-producing trucks with silent, zero-emission transporters.
When Musk first unveiled the truck, the company received a few thousand preorders from clients like Walmart, Pepsi, Anheuser-Busch, and FedEx. Longer routes present more of a challenge for EV trucks because they will need to charge more frequently, requiring expensive downtime that diesel-powered vehicles need not. So, it came as good news when PepsiCo recently confirmed it is taking delivery of its preordered Tesla Semi trucks in December. The soda pop company will be the first to receive its Tesla order after many delays.
PepsiCo's EV Mission
The trucks will be utilized at PepsiCo's Frito-Lay plant in Modesto, California, and its PepsiCo beverages factory in Sacramento, according to a statement from the company. PepsiCo reserved 100 of the vehicles in 2017 with the intention of lowering fuel costs and pollution. American businesses have committed to taking steps to lessen their negative environmental effects, with PepsiCo setting a goal of having net-zero emissions by 2040. Ten percent of the company's glasshouse gas emissions come from transportation. Last year, its fleet covered 1.2 billion kilometers.
Tesla's Fun Trucks
Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla, announced the commencement of the Semi truck's manufacturing on Twitter. He said the trucks had an 805-kilometer (500-mile) range and are "super fun to drive." The trucks were supposed to start production by 2019, but due to a lack of parts, that date has been pushed back to 2019.
Preorders for Tesla's Semi trucks were also made by United Parcel Service, Walmart Canada, and Sysco Corp. Their orders' standing or expected delivery dates are unclear. The quantity of Semis that will be delivered to the packaged food giant in December was kept a secret by both Pepsi and Musk.
Tesla Semi Truck Interior Cabin
Tesla Semi Delays
The Class 8 truck was initially promised to enter production by 2019 when Tesla first announced the introduction of the Semi in 2017. Nevertheless, there were numerous delays with the Semi program, including the resignation of a significant executive and supply chain problems. The Austin Gigafactory, where Tesla also makes the Model Y electric car, is anticipated to produce the Semi in large quantities.
According to earlier information on the Tesla website, the Semi had a price of $150,000 for the 300-mile range variant and $180,000 for the 500-mile vehicle. If prices have changed, it's unknown.
For a fully loaded truck with a combined gross combination weight of 82,000 pounds, the Semi can accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 20 seconds. Over a three-year period, the expected fuel savings compared to a typical diesel-powered truck are $200,000.
Updated images of the Semi inside were published on the Tesla website in August. After accepting $20,000 deposits for a few months, the business closed its orderbook for the Semi on its website in August. A Mega Charger from Tesla has already been installed in the Modesto, California, distribution center for Frito-Lay.
EV Truck Rivals
The Tesla Semi, however, has some stern rivals.
The company's entry into non-consumer vehicles began with the all-electric truck, which was initially unveiled in 2017. With some welcome upgrades like a central seating position and two touchscreens, it's anticipated to cover the majority of current travels currently made by diesel vehicles.
It might be the following phase in CEO Elon Musk's grand plan to switch the entire world over to renewable energy. Combination trucks make up just 1.1 percent of the U.S. vehicle fleet, yet they produce 17 percent of the fleet's emissions, according to the company's 2020 impact report. Truck electrification might eliminate a significant source of pollution.
But it will have rivals like Kenworth, Freightliner, and Geely to contend with. When Tesla launches its Semi truck, the market may be very crowded – far more congested than when the truck was first introduced in 2017.