Shouldn’t Amazon Be Placing A Tesla Semi Order?

Red Tesla Semi exterior front

APR 23 2018 BY EVANNEX 17


Amazon is as much a logistics company as it is an online retailer. When you click to order a package, it needs to get from the company’s warehouse to your door.

*This article comes to us courtesy of EVANNEX (which also makes aftermarket Tesla accessories). Posted by Matt Pressman. The opinions expressed in these articles are not necessarily our own at InsideEVs.

Read Also: FedEx Places 20-Unit Pre-Order For Tesla Semi

Above: A look at the Tesla Semi (Instagram: lonestar_hawaiian)

Contrary to popular belief, this doesn’t happen with magic. Amazon relies on a remarkably complex network of trucks, planes, trains, and boats, to get its packages to its customers.

The company’s e-commerce dominance has quickly made them one of the biggest customers for UPS, FedEx as well as the USPS.

Related: UPS Orders 125 Tesla Semis

In fact, Amazon’s shipping needs are so vast, that it recently began purchasing planes and tractor-trailers to bolster its logistics capabilities.

With so much experience shipping across a global network, and its strategically located warehouses, Amazon is rumored to be entering the shipping business itself. Earlier this year the Wall Street Journal reported that Amazon is working on a new service called Shipping With Amazon, that would compete with the likes of FedEx and UPS. It’s slated to roll out in Los Angeles and expand quickly from there.

It’s clear Amazon is going to be in the shipping business for quite some time.

Everybody Else Is Doing It

Nearly all of the US’s largest shipping and trucking rental companies have placed initial orders for the Tesla Semi.

Above: A look at some of the bigger names who’ve pre-ordered a fleet of Tesla Semis (Source: Transport Topics)

FedEx, UPS, DHL, and Ryder have all put down reservations and appear to be excited about the opportunity to work with Tesla.

Beyond being a more sustainable trucking alternative to burning diesel, the Tesla Semi could represent significant economic advantages.

DHL, who got to test a prototype, even indicated that the Tesla Semi could save the company “tens of thousands” of dollars. These savings come in the form of cheaper refueling and lower maintenance expenses.

If the unit economics are proven, Tesla may have both the cheapest and greenest solution in the logistics industry.

Where Is Amazon?

With all of its competition piling on the Tesla bandwagon, you have to wonder what Amazon’s next move will be.

Above: Another look at the Tesla Semi (Instagram: deere_3046r)

Have they secretly placed a reservation for the Tesla Semi? Are they planning on building out their own shipping service with diesel trucks? Would they try and build their own electric truck?

It’s anybody’s guess. Regardless, it seems like a partnership between Amazon and Tesla for a fleet of electric semi trucks is a no-brainer.

After all, shopping online isn’t going away and Amazon should be building out its shipping infrastructure with sustainability in mind.

Video: HyperChange TV

Written by Galileo Russell, a 25 year-old Tesla shareholder based in NYC. He has been blogging about Tesla since 2012, and is the founder of HyperChange TV, a new YouTube channel about tech and finance news for millennials.

*Editor’s Note: EVANNEX, which also sells aftermarket gear for Teslas, has kindly allowed us to share some of its content with our readers, free of charge. Our thanks go out to EVANNEX. Check out the site here.

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17 Comments on "Shouldn’t Amazon Be Placing A Tesla Semi Order?"

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Jeff Bezos has a massive ego and he’s super jealous of Elon Musk’s achievements especially with SpaceX. Of course Amazon could benefit from a semi, but Bezos is too arrogant to order those.

You must have a super massive ego to think you can judge other peoples egos.

Ego is most of it, but he also wants to dominate space…and knows the more money he transfers Elon’s way, will help SpaceX push forward at a faster pace. You don’t see Bill Gates using an iphone.

Another Euro point of view


They use a lot of other shipping companies to do most of the job.
It’s not Amazon that deliver goods to my door/mailbox but another shipping company.
Some are shipped in containers by rail or shops too.

So far…but word is that that are preparing to start their own delivery side.

I suspect that Amazon placed a yuuuge order with Nikola Motors. Yup. Makes perfect sense.

Actually Boeing, Amazon knows Air is where the profit in the shipping industry happens… Let the independents race to the bottom on prices for ground shipping

Hey Galileo and EVANNEX, It is NOT “anyone’s guess”. Amazon tells you straight up why they aren’t reserving Semi tractors. Carefully read the original source news article you appear to have not actually read. (the “tractor-trailer” link)!

From that link:

“The ever-ambitious online retailer planned to announce on Friday morning that it had purchased “thousands” of TRAILERS — the part of a tractor-trailer that stores the cargo — to make sure it had the shipping capacity to move products on time as its North American business continues its rapid growth….

…A spokeswoman stressed that Amazon would continue to rely on EXISTING TRUCKING PARTNERS, which own and drive the TRACTOR portion of the vehicles that will tow the Amazon trailers.”

Also, Galileo and EVANNEX, if you actually had read the details of the Wall Street Journal article you referenced, you would realize that (as a separate program) Amazon is testing a DELIVERY SERVICE (rivaling FEDex and UPS) that would deliver or at least be responsible for packages from various 3rd party Amazon merchants’ distribution centers to the final customer destination. If Amazon was to go electric, they will require local delivery vans similar to the 50 WORKHOUSE delivery vans that UPS has ordered – not Tesla semis.

They still have to move big loads TO those warehouses, and they haven’t stated their future plans for local delivery.

Precisely. I’ve seen Prime-branded TRAILERS all over the place, but they’re all pulled by some other company’s TRACTOR.

Most long shipping is done through independents

“…A spokeswoman stressed that Amazon would continue to rely on EXISTING TRUCKING PARTNERS, which own and drive the TRACTOR portion of the vehicles that will tow the Amazon trailers.”

Thanks for your fact-checking, HVACman! That was my guess even before reading the article, since I’ve never seen a semi trailer with the “Amazon” logo on the highway! And sadly, this lack of fact-based content is typical of the fluff-piece writing so often seen on Evannex.

Admittedly nobody is putting a gun to my head and making me read Evannax-origin articles here on IEVs, but I do wish the editors here were more selective in what they chose to copy from that website.

A bit OT, but a related factoid that belies the POTUS’ claim of Amazon profiting at the USPS’ expense:

Headline: “The cost of convenience: Amazon’s shipping losses top $7B for first time”

“The amount of money that Amazon lost on shipping — a.k.a. the net cost of landing all those brown boxes on your doorstep in record time — reached an all-time high of nearly $7.2 billion in 2016, according to GeekWire’s analysis of the e-commerce giant’s financial results.”

It would appear Jeff Bezos/Amazon may actually be subsidizing the USPS and other shippers at their stockholders’ expense.

The whole idea of a business contract is to make arrangement that benefits both parties; a “win-win” situation. Now that’s not to say there are no one-sided business arrangements, but in general, a business contract must benefit both parties, or it wouldn’t be signed.

It’s very sad that certain people, such as the Cheeto-in-Chief, see every transaction as a “zero-sum” game; a game in which true partnerships are never possible; a game in which for one person or group to win, another must lose. Thank goodness the real world doesn’t work that way! And how very sad — not to mention very destructive — it is to have a President who sees every relationship, both business and personal, as zero-sum contest in which it’s never possible for everybody to win.

The recently released Amazon shareholder letter stated the following… “And across the world, Amazon is contracting with our service providers to launch our first low-pollution last-mile fleet.” Sounds like they are partnering with their delivery service providers to purchase their first low pollution fleet. The entire shareholder letter was filed in an 8k with the SEC.