In our last blog post, we talked about the possibilities of electric HGV’s. More to the point, how they were a bit like busses. But the race is finally over, and Tesla have unveiled their all electric, futuristic HGV. And honestly, it’s blown us away. Their concept design has made it through production with barely a change, and the results – from appearance to performance – are stunning.
How It Looks
The first thing we will say is that the Tesla electric HGV completely redefines what a HGV should look like. It’s stunning! Available in a range of colours (though we’re a fan of the silver and of the blue), the sleek, almost bullet like shape of the HGV brings us one step closer to the far flung futuristic look we’ve all been dreaming about. Good work Mr Musk. If you haven’t seen the design yet, check out the review video here.
But really, it’s less about what’s on the surface and more about what under the hood. During the launch event, which featured 2 semi models, we also saw the Class 8 aerodynamic prototype and a new, never before seen low roof version of the vehicle. Each model shown had achieved a drag coefficient of 0.36, which is unheard of for a large goods vehicle, and even for some commercial passenger cars. Even more impressive, the semi is equipped with 4 independent electric motors on the rear axels, which enables insane torque for a 0 to 60 mpg acceleration with a full load in just 20 seconds. The powertrain feature also enables another interesting performance spec: a speed of 65 mph going up a 5% grade. Elon Musk himself characterised the semi’s as a ‘bad ass mother f**ker, and we have to say, we agree. The specs of this vehicle have exceeded and even crushed our expectations. There were also murmurings of a semi-autonomous driving capacity, which shows that Tesla is steering clear of full self-driving HGV’s for now. Instead, the semi’s will feature enhanced autopilot features to create semi-automated convoys, making the Tesla semi the safest HGV yet.
How Far Will It Go?
All of that performance is impressive, but it doesn’t address one if the bigger concerns that’s been floating around electric vehicles in general – and that’s the charge length. At present, charge points for electric vehicles are rising in popularity, but they aren’t yet a national standard. This means that there aren’t electric charging stations at every service station, and most of the publically available ones won’t be equipped to deal with electric HGV’s. But Tesla have put paid to that worry as well. Along with the higher performance and beautiful look, Musk announced that the Tesla HGV’s would all come with two different battery pack configurations, allowing drivers to customise their journey for a range of either 300 or 500 miles per charge. That’s per single charge. An that’s not all. Musk also announced that Tesla will be bringing out the Supercharger V3 and a new Megacharger. These megachargers will add 400 miles of range to the Tesla HGV’s in just 30 minutes. 30 minutes! Using the same metrics that tesla released for energy consumption, that translates to roughly 1.6 MW charging, which is around 10 times more powerful than Tesla’s superchargers.
So overall, it’s a pretty impressive machine. Others in the industry obviously feel the same, because Tesla have reported orders to reserve one pouring in since they first unveiled it. Within the first few days, over 200 had been reserved, with more going through every day. If nothing else, this proves that the HGV industry has been waiting for an electric HGV for some time, and the opportunity to move forward into the electric vehicle world is something we’re all very excited about. To find out more about Tesla’s new vehicle, or to keep up to date with the news as it happens, just get in touch with us today.