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Updated specs, more orders?

Tesla has just updated its Tesla Semi-related website, updating some of the specs and posting new images and videos.

The Tesla Semi is currently expected to hit the market by the end of this year, according to company CEO Elon Musk.

One of the coolest things is that the button to order/reserve the vehicle is gone, while there is a new one – “Get updates.””.

We can only guess that there are two reasons for this: Tesla already has a lot of reservations (probably a four-digit number and maybe even a five-digit number), which exceeds supply in the short term. The other reason could be the need to raise prices (originally announced in 2017). The new website does not contain pricing information – previously prices for regular versions ranged from $150,000 (standard version) to $180,000 (long range version).

Tesla describes the Semi as “a beast”“More powerful, more efficient and fully electric. Semi is the future of trucking.”

The company kept the base numbers, including two battery versions for around 300 miles (483 km) or 500 miles (804 km) of range on a full charge.

The exact capacity of the battery has never been disclosed, but assuming the expected power consumption at “less than 2 kWh per mile”, it can be assumed that it must be around 600 kWh and 1,000 kWh ( 1 MWh) depending on the version.

Tesla Semi
Tesla Semi

The combined gross weight of the Tesla Semi with a fully loaded trailer is 82,000 lbs (37,195 kg).

With such a load, the Tesla Semi is promised to accelerate from 0 to 60 mph (96.5 /km/h) in 20 seconds, while still being able to reach a 5% highway speed limit. These are very important practical steps to keep the truck running smoothly – merging safely and keeping up with traffic as well as climbing steep grades.

According to the updated website, the production version of the Tesla Semi will feature three independent motors on the rear axles, up from four in the initial spec.

One new thing appears to be charging information: up to 70% of range can be replenished in 30 minutes, using “Tesla’s semi chargers”, which we believe refers to Tesla mega chargers.

By combining the charging time with the estimated battery capacity, we can calculate that the average charging power over a 70% state-of-charge (SOC) window is as high as 840 kW or 1400 kW (1, 4MW).

That’s a pretty high power output, although nothing out of the ordinary C-level (compared to battery size): an average of around 1.4C.

Tesla Semi
Tesla Semi

Tesla also mentioned that the vehicle should save up to $200,000 in its first three years of ownership on energy (electricity vs. fuel):

“Charging with electricity is approximately 2.5 times cheaper per mile than refueling with diesel.* Operators can achieve estimated fuel savings of up to $200,000 in their first three years of ownership. With remote diagnostics, over-the-air software updates and fewer moving parts to maintain, operators will spend less time in service centers and more time on the road.

*Based on average diesel prices in California between February 2022 and July 2022 and typical electric rates.”

It will be interesting to see when and where Tesla begins mass production of the Tesla Semi, as well as how the ramp-up progresses.

The 500-mile range version, which has been confirmed for a 2022 launch, is still something beyond what competitors are offering, despite all the delays since 2019.

To truly succeed, Tesla will likely soon need to increase its investment in megacharging infrastructure, although initially customers may rely on depot charging (regular routes).

Tesla Semi Specifications (August 2022):

  • Fully loaded at 82,000 lbs (37,195 kg) Gross Combined Weight
  • Range: approximately 300 miles (483 km) or 500 miles (804 km)
    (two battery options)
  • Energy consumption: less than 2 kWh/mile (1.24 kWh/km)
  • Estimated battery capacity (depending on range and power consumption): 600 kWh or 1000 kWh (1 MWh)
  • Acceleration 0-60 mph (96.5 /km/h): 20 seconds (at full load)
  • Accelerating on a 5% grade: freeway speed limit
  • Powertrain: 3 independent motors on the rear axles
    (compared to four engines in the initial spec in 2017)
  • Quick charge: up to 70% battery life in 30 minutes
  • Estimated average load power in 70% SOC window (based on specs):
    Battery 600kWh: 840kW
    Battery 1000kWh: 1400kW (1.4MW)
  • Fuel savings (estimated): up to $200,000 over 3 years

Initial prices (at unveiling in 2017):

  • Expected base price (300 mile range) – $150,000
  • Expected base price (500 mile range) – $180,000
  • Basic Reservation – $20,000
  • Founders Series Expected Price – $200,000
  • Founders Series Reservation – $200,000
    * Prices displayed in USD. International prices vary.

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