Tesla Inc has unveiled a prototype electric big-rig truck that it will start producing in 2019.
Tesla Inc has unveiled a prototype electric big-rig truck that it will start producing in 2019. Chief Executive Elon Musk unveiled the big rig, dubbed the Tesla Semi, by riding the truck into an airport hangar near Los Angeles in front of a crowd of Tesla car owners and potential buyers.
Later the semi-truck opened its trailer, and a new Roadster drove out. The car is an updated version of Tesla’s first production vehicle. It can seat four and travel 620 miles (1,000 km) on a single charge, a new record for an electric vehicle, Musk said. It can go from 0 to 60 miles per hour (100 km per hour) in 1.9 seconds.
Musk has described electric trucks as Tesla’s next effort to move the economy away from fossil fuels through projects including electric cars, solar roofs and power storage. The truck can go up to 500 miles (800 km) at maximum weight at highway speed. Musk did not give a price for the truck.
On the other hand, Tesla Semi can also go from 0 to 60 mph in five seconds without cargo or reach 60 mph in 20 seconds at the maximum weight allowed on US highways of 80,000 pounds (36,300 kg). “I can drive this thing and I have no idea how to drive a semi,” Musk joked. The company will guarantee the truck’s drivetrain, which delivers power to the wheels, for 1 million miles.
Tesla would need to invest substantially to create a factory for those trucks. The company is currently spending about $1 billion per quarter, largely to set up the Model 3 factory, and is contemplating a factory in China to build cars. Charging and maintaining electric trucks that crisscross the country could be expensive and complex. Tesla said the truck can charge 30 minutes and then travel 400 miles.