Elon Musk’s is taking his bet on electric vehicles beyond private cars by entering the commercial freight market. Tesla is planning to release an electric big-rug truck this month, according to a Reuters report. The company intends the 200- to 300-miles semi truck for regional hauling.
In a statement from Ryder executive Scott Perry, Tesla’s truck will be referred to as the “day cab.” The day cab has no sleeper berth.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk referred to this truck in a June meeting with shareholders. The trucking industry provided feedback during that meeting. The involvement of experts will ensure that the semi’s biggest customers get a product that’s specific to their needs. It’s a matter of scaling volume so that Tesla can make as many as they can.
Tesla’s semi truck won’t be competing directly with long-haul fuel-powered vehicles that reach 1,000 miles per tank. But the 300 miles range is still within the entry-level in the long-haul category. The semi truck will also include a self-driving feature. Tesla has discussed with various State Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) potential tests for autonomous semi-trailer trucks.
Developing an Autonomous Vehicle
Compared to other long-haul trucks, costs will be the biggest deciding factor for commercial logistic companies. Expect expensive batteries for the heavy loads. Musk and company need to consider not making the truck’s capacities and capabilities too expensive given its function. Yet Tesla can market the long-term savings advantage when it comes to the semi’s fuel expenses and other maintenance requirements. But Perry believes that Tesla is coming up with a strategy to address the distance required in long-haul trucks.
Tesla will unveil the semi’s actual range this month. We’ll have to wait for the update on this significant development among autonomous vehicles. Musk predicts around two years before the semi comes into production.