Swift and Silent
Tesla’s electric semi-truck is not only more environmentally friendly than its competitors, but it is also quieter than the typical diesel-powered truck that barrels down the street. An eight-second YouTube video, first revealed by Inverse, shows a sleek Tesla Semi prototype gliding swiftly and almost silently through an intersection in Sunnyvale, California, near the company’s Palo Alto headquarters. Watch it below.
The prototype features impact-resistant glass, a streamlined cabin design, and the ability to accelerate from zero to 97 km/h (60 mph) in five seconds when not carrying cargo. After pushing back the unveiling date twice due to Tesla’s Model 3 production delays and the company’s humanitarian efforts in Puerto Rico, CEO Elon Musk finally unveiled the much-anticipated Tesla Semi prototype in November 2017.
Though the lowest-priced model costs a cool $150,000, the truck is supposed to travel 483 km (300 miles) on a single charge. The more expensive $180,000-model can go even farther, with a range of 805 km (500 miles). While those costs were higher than some analysts anticipated, Musk asserted that the electric semi costs less to operate than typical diesel rigs by about $0.16 per km ($0.25 per mile).
Though the vehicle isn’t scheduled for production until 2019, companies are already buying into Musk’s sales pitch of a cheaper, greener truck en masse. By the end of 2017, 18 companies — including Walmart and Pepsi Co. — had pre-ordered at least one truck. UPS topped the list, reserving 125 vehicles.
Hopefully, Tesla’s production team will be able to keep to Musk’s scheduling promises. But the odds could be slim, given that the company’s Model 3 electric car production fell well short of Musk’s 2017 goals. Delayed production or not, however, this new YouTube footage reveals that the new truck will be making our streets quieter whenever it does finally hit the road.