Tesla delays reveal of electric semi

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Updated Sep 14, 2017
So far, this is all most of us have seen of Tesla’s highly anticipated electric tractor.So far, this is all most of us have seen of Tesla’s highly anticipated electric tractor.

Tesla has delayed the unveiling of its all-electric semi.

According to a Tweet posted today by Tesla CEO Elon Musk, the heavy-duty truck will be unveiled late next month. Musk had said in April that the truck would be revealed in late September.

“Tesla Semi truck unveil & test ride tentatively scheduled for Oct 26th in Hawthorne. Worth seeing this beast in person. It’s unreal,” Musk Tweeted at 4:20 p.m. today.

No explanation was given as to why the unveiling was postponed. Musk’s announcement comes about two weeks after rival Cummins unveiled its Class 7 electric tractor, the Aeos Electric Commercial Vehicle Demonstrator.

Driving range in electric vehicles remains a topic of concern, and that’s especially true for heavy-duty applications.

At a Tesla stockholders’ meeting in June, Musk attempted to quiet concerns about range for heavy-duty electric trucks.

“A lot of people don’t think you can do a heavy duty long-range truck that is electric, but we are confident that this can be done,” Musk says in the video below around 4:48.

Citing an interview with Ryder, Reuters reported last month that Tesla’s semi has a range of 200 to 300 miles. While the U.S. Department of Transportation classifies a long-haul shipment to be at least 250 miles, most in the trucking industry would consider that kind of range as regional—not long hauling.

“I’m not going to count them out for having a strategy for longer distances or ranges, but right out of the gate I think that’s where they’ll start (in regional hauling),” said Ryder Chief Technology & Procurement Officer Scott Perry who met with Tesla officials earlier this year.

Musk also announced in April that Tesla planned to unveil an electric pickup in 18 to 24 months.