Elon Musk pegs the Tesla Semi truck release for December as the first production batch goes to Pepsi and its Megacharger station
Elon Musk took to Twitter to announce that the Tesla Semi truck will be launching by December 1 when Pepsi is expected to take the first delivery of a batch that has already gone into production. The 40-ton electric rig with 500 miles of range is expected to mark a watershed moment in long-haul transportation on par with the 2008 launch of the OG Tesla Roadster which a decade later shook the car industry to its core with most every major legacy automaker now pledging to go all-electric by 2030.
The Semi Class 8 truck project was first mentioned in 2016 during the unveiling of Tesla's Master Plan then Elon Musk held a press conference in November 2017 to flesh out the specs and design some more. At the time, he gave Tesla the usual two-year timeframe to begin production in 2019, but, again as usual, those plans slipped for a later year until Tesla kept its last promise to begin the Semi's production in October 2022.
Tesla has already taken thousands of preorders for the Semi, with at least 100 going to its first customer Pepsi. The Pepsi factories in Modesto are also where a Tesla Megacharger has a construction permit to go with the new electric rigs delivery.
The Megachargers are running on Tesla's own Semi truck charging standard and the stations have a 1MW output, powered by solar. Elon Musk said that the Semi truck can be brought to 80% charge, or 400 miles of range there for 30 minutes, and that Tesla plans a global network of such long-haul truck charging stations.
Tesla is not the only game in town when it comes to electric rigs, though, as Volvo, BYD, Daimler, Toyota, and others have gotten in on the action, too. There is now a global 3.75MW MCS standard for charging heavy-duty electric vehicles, too, with its first 1MW chargers said to be compatible with Tesla vehicles as well.