Elon Musk, the co-founder of Tesla and CEO, stated plans to use the Tesla Semi electric vehicle to enter the commercial transportation sector in November 2017. With its unique and very efficient passenger cars, Tesla has completely transformed the world’s electric transportation movement. The Tesla Semi is not just any truck; it is a zero-emissions freight-hauling cargo vehicle that outperforms conventional oil guzzlers in every regard, including performance, range, economy, and operational expenses.
Exterior of Tesla Semi
The Tesla Semi has a special cab design that is likely the cleanest we have ever seen on a truck. It seems to be something from the future. Up front, there is a sizable glass area that wraps around and slopes into the frunk. Because of its size, the glass area’s panels reach the doors. For improved aerodynamics, Tesla removed the door mirrors from the Semi. Instead, a feed is sent to the interior screens using cameras that are mounted at the very back.
Being an electric vehicle, the Tesla Semi has a blanked-off nose and a small air intake on its chin for cooling the battery, which is located between the front and back axles. The trailer bed and tow hitch are located at the back.
Elon Musk made substantial claims regarding the Tesla Semi’s aerodynamic properties, justifying its slick exterior and minimalist overall design.
“The truck has a bullet-like design. The drag coefficient is 0.36 for the Tesla Semi, better than the 0.38 coefficient of drag of the Bugatti Chiron. The aerodynamics enable it to reach an amazing range.”
Interior of Tesla Semi
Its interior is distinctive. According to Tesla, the driver’s seat is positioned in the middle of the vehicle, which improves overall view out the windshield. Two more foldable seats are located behind the driver’s seat. The extreme ends of the dashboard each have a sizable touchscreen. Expect these two screens to have not only truck-specific features that highlight trailer statistics and more, but also Tesla’s excellent user interface and the standard package of connectivity available in its road cars.
There will also be a comprehensive selection of remotely operated features available thanks to the Tesla Mobile application. Owners will have access to Dispatch communication, location tracking, and remote diagnostics. Another function is predictive maintenance, which examines the truck’s condition and notifies the owner when maintenance is required. Fleet owners can easily access this vast amount of data as well. Tesla presented the Semi at the Tesla Cyber Rodeo event on April 7, 2022.
Features of Tesla Semi
The Tesla Semi will make substantial advancements in safety as well. The brand’s “Enhanced Autopilot” package of functions will come standard on the Tesla Semi. Automated emergency braking, forward collision warning, and automatic lane-keeping assistance are among the variety of safety features. The Tesla Semi will maintain lane position, slow down and gradually stop, and automatically call an emergency number if it detects no driver input.
The Tesla Semi has an improved traction control system to prevent jackknifing. The unique folding of highly articulated vehicles, such as trailers, known as jackknifing, occurs as a result of unchecked inertia. It happens when the truck bends at an unusual angle due to the weight of the trailers, frequently leading to accidents.
Specifications of Tesla Semi
The Semi’s power and torque numbers have not been disclosed by Tesla. However, the existence of a quad-motor setup on the rear axles has been confirmed. The tractor body style known as a 64 features four driving wheels and six axles to haul heavy loads. Tesla claims that the acceleration time from 0 to 60 mph is only 20 seconds with a payload of 80,000 pounds.
The Tesla Semi accelerates like a mid-range sports car without the payload, reaching 60 mph in only 5 seconds. The brand’s presentation claims that a typical diesel vehicle moves in 15 seconds. Additionally, the Tesla Semi can go up to 60 mph with a maximum load of 80,000 pounds on a 5 percent incline.
Wired reported in November 2017 that the Semi will feature identical motors to a Tesla Model 3, each delivering 258 horsepower. There are over 1000 horsepower overall. There is currently no information available regarding the torque amount, but since electric cars create a lot of torque, we may anticipate that the Semi’s powertrain will generate a four-digit torque figure.
Battery, Charging and Range of Tesla Semi
The range would be the main consideration for truckers. At least in writing, Tesla has addressed range concern in great detail. There will be two battery options, one with a 300-mile range and the other with a 500-mile range. Less than 2 kWh per mile is stated to be the energy consumption, which is exceptionally low.
“500 miles at maximum weight with 60 mph highway speeds. The worst-case situation is 500 miles. Most trips are less than 250 kilometers long. Even if there is no charging available there, you can still travel there and return home without having to recharge.” Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, at the 2017 unveiling of the Tesla Semi and Tesla Roadster
Using Tesla’s solar-powered mega chargers, it takes the Semi 30 minutes to recharge to a point where its range is 400 miles. Therefore, provided the claimed range and charging durations were right, the math would be flawless and the drivers wouldn’t have to wait excessively long for their Semi to charge. However, the Semi hasn’t yet been evaluated by motoring writers or range-testing agencies. The huge battery pack in the Tesla Semi will necessitate longer charging times and faster charging rates. Megachargers, a Tesla invention, are a remedy. According to the brand’s Impact Report 2020, in order for truckers’ long-distance trips to be sustainable, trucking rest sites across the U.S. and Europe are being equipped with Megachargers.
Pricing of Tesla Semi
With a starting price of USD 150,000 (for the 300-mile variant) or USD 180,000, Tesla anticipates releasing the Semi (500-mile version). It is currently accepting reservations for Semi with a USD 20,000 deposit. According to Tesla, the cost of operating diesel trucks is 20 percent higher. A typical diesel truck costs USD 1.51 per mile, compared to USD 1.26 for the Tesla Semi. According to Tesla, the figures were computed using a 100-mile trip, an average speed of 60 mph, a weight of 80,000 pounds, a fuel price of $2.50 per gallon, and an electricity price of 7 cents per kWh. The company is attempting to illustrate that the high initial cost of the electric truck can be offset by its low operating costs and low maintenance requirements.
The Tesla Semi is another mind-blowing vehicle from Tesla, as compared to conventional diesel trucks, the Tesla semi proves to be much more cost-efficient and safer.
More details about the semi are awaited by the customers in its launch in 2023.