FutureFive New Zealand - Consumer technology news & reviews from the future
Story image

Tesla unveils the truck of the future

Tue, 21st Nov 2017
FYI, this story is more than a year old

Tesla recently made a massive announcement in regards to their latest projects.

They have unveiled two new vehicles, a sports type roadster and a long-range electric semi truck.

Both of these vehicles are extremely exciting, however, the semi truck is what really caught my attention.

The Tesla Semi will supposedly deliver a far better experience for truck drivers while increasing safety and significantly reducing the cost of cargo transport.

Without a trailer, the Tesla Semi achieves 0 to 90 kmh in five seconds, compared to 15 seconds in a comparable diesel truck.

 It does 0 to 90 kmh in 20 seconds with a full 80,000-pound load, a task that takes a diesel truck about a minute.

Most notably for truck drivers and other travellers on the road, it climbs 5% grades at a steady 95 kmh, whereas a diesel truck maxes out at 65 kmh on a 5% grade.

The Tesla Semi requires no shifting or clutching for smooth acceleration and deceleration, and its regenerative braking recovers 98% of kinetic energy to the battery, giving it a basically infinite brake life.

Overall, the Semi is more responsive, covers more kilometres than a diesel truck in the same amount of time, and more safely integrates with passenger car traffic.

Unlike other trucks, the Semi's cabin is designed specifically around the driver, featuring unobstructed stairs for easier entry and exit, full standing room inside, and a centred driver position for optimal visibility.

Two touchscreen displays positioned symmetrically on both sides of the driver provide easy access to navigation, blind spot monitoring and electronic data logging.

Built-in connectivity integrates directly with a fleet's management system to support routing and scheduling, and remote monitoring.

Diesel trucks today currently require several third-party devices for similar functionality.

Megachargers, a new high-speed DC charging solution, will add about 640 kilometres in 30 minutes and can be installed at origin or destination points and along heavily trafficked routes, enabling recharging during loading, unloading, and driver breaks.

The Tesla Semi's all-electric architecture is designed to have a higher safety standard than any other heavy-duty truck on the market, with a reinforced battery that shields the Semi from impact and gives it an exceptionally low centre of gravity.

 Its windshield is made of impact resistant glass. Jackknifing is prevented due to the Semi's onboard sensors that detect instability and react with positive or negative torque to each wheel while independently actuating all brakes.

The surround cameras aid object detection and minimize blind spots, automatically alerting the driver to safety hazards and obstacles. With Enhanced Autopilot, the Tesla Semi features Automatic Emergency Braking, Automatic Lane Keeping, Lane Departure Warning, and event recording.

To top it all off the Tesla Semi can also travel in a convoy, where one or several Semi trucks will be able to autonomously follow a lead Semi.

All-in, the Tesla Semi promises massive savings in energy costs, performance, efficiency and reliability.

The roadster is the latest in Tesla's electric car line-up and it is perhaps their most beautiful vehicle yet.

It also comes with a massive 800-kilometre range and a top speed of 405 kmh.

However, the price tag is just as large costing a base price of  US$200,000

You can check it out here.

Follow us on: