Ever wonder what the future of semi trucks is? Last night in Hawthorne, California, Elon Musk unveiled it. Holding an event for journalists and the rest of the media, Musk unveiled Tesla’s first entry into the semi truck market. And yes, it’s as insane as you think it is.
With no regard to the outer design, the driver’s seat is crazy in itself. There’s a center-mounted seat with the steering wheel in front and two screens off to either side, while two passenger seats are seen behind and to the right. Tesla was able to achieve this feat by moving the battery pack to the lower portion of the truck which also helps to reduce your chance of rolling around if you crash since there’s more leverage to the bottom center. There’s even somewhat of a storage compartment in the front of the truck to store repair tools and such.
And that’s just the inside. On the outside, it’s clear Tesla built this monster, what with the curves and attention to detail throughout and the Tesla alum sitting on the front. The door handle even recess into the doors of the truck, similar to what happens on Tesla’s cars. If no one’s ever said “a semi truck is beautiful” before, let that change today.
For all you junkies out there, you’re probably wondering what this truck is capable of. According to Tesla, its semi truck has a range of somewhere around 500 miles. It can go from zero to 60 mph in just five seconds, and with 80,000 pounds of cargo, in 20 seconds. That’s saying something. Musk even stated the truck has a 400-mile range in 30 minutes. Finally, Musk promises the truck has a 65-mile range up to 5% grade over typical diesel semis which have 45 mile ranges up to 5% grade.
Also, the truck is nuclear explosion proof. If it gets destroyed in such an event, Musk promises a full refund.
And if it weren’t already obvious, the truck ships with Tesla’s autopilot self-driving technology on board which can automatically adjust to lanes for you, break in emergencies, and even call the paramedics if you have a health crisis. “It’ll take care of you,” said Musk.
This vehicle marks a major milestone for Tesla, Up until now, they’ve focused on consumers who could go out and buy these cars like they would any other model. But now they’re talking big game and betting on their future. If things go over as well as they did with the company’s various Models, expect to see many more Tesla-branded semis on the streets on just a couple of years.
The Tesla Semi Truck will go on sale and enter production in 2019. Companies are already placing orders for the truck, with Mejjer Inc in Detroit reserving four of them for $5,000 a piece. As for the price of the semi itself, Musk said it’ll cost even less than a typical diesel semi. Whereas typical semis cost $1.51/mile, Tesla’s will cost just $1.26/mile all in. Expect more surrounding the truck leading up to its release.