The future of Trucking – Tesla’s Semi: Huge potential cost savings

Cost savings and an easy run for the driver - that's the promise

Elon Musk’s suggestion to the Lindsay Fox’s of the world is that there could be cost savings of $200,000 over a million miles of driving – on fuel costs alone – that’s the outcome for buyers of the newly announced Tesla Semi.

This thing is typical Tesla – as in, it’s nothing like anything on the road today – moreso than any Tesla car has been.

The truck has a swooping aerodynamic design, a huge toughened glass frontage which provides an outstanding view for the driver.

And the driver is key to the overall design – the centre steering position gives not only a great view of things, but could well mean global distribution can happen faster with a single model required for production.

Speed stats are rarely spoken about with big-rigs.  A typical truck might normally take 15 seconds to get from 0-60mph, without a trailer.  The Tesla Semi does it in five seconds.

Load it up and you’ll do that in 20 seconds, a task that would normally take a minute.

They appear to have covered everything, from speed at inclines and the huge driver advantage of not needing to shift gears.

Range will be around 800km, with a new Megacharger network to fuel them up with another 640km of range in just 30 minutes.

Considering many see trucking as the first and most lucrative area for autonomous trucks, it’s not surprising the Tesla Semi comes with “Enhanced Autopilot” allowing for automatic breaking, lane keeping and it can travel in a Convoy to automatically follow a lead vehicle.

Think about the maintenance costs saved, let alone fuel – there’s a lot to gain for owners.

No pricing of course, so expect it to be ridiculous, but will the savings entice the trucking firms to give it consideration?  They’ll be keeping a close eye on it.

Production starts in 2019, no news on when it might make it to Australia.

 

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Motoring

Trev produces two of the most popular technology podcasts in Australia, Your Tech Life and Two Blokes Talking Tech. He hosts a nightly radio show on Talking Lifestyle, 8pm Monday to Friday in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, appears on over 50 radio stations across Australia weekly, and is the Tech Expert on Channel 9’s Today Show and A Current Affair. Father of three, he is often found down in his Man Cave.

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