One of Tesla's enthusiasts asked Elon Musk about the Semi, but the answer was quite surprising.

Instead of assurance about the upcoming market launch, the CEO pointed out battery cell constraints and that it should ok next year.

Question: "How’s Semi coming along, Elon?
What year do you think we’ll see follow-the-leader driverless platooning?"

Elon Musk: "We are too cell-constrained right now, but probably ok next year"

We can't draw any far-reaching conclusion, but the previous speculation about the production output maybe was too optimistic.

 

It's difficult to say what the battery cell constraints really mean. Assuming 500 kWh battery per truck, a 1,000 unit run would require 500 MWh or 0.5 GWh, which is not that much.

If Tesla is going to rely solely on the new 4680 cells, then the pilot plant in Fremont should be able to provide enough cells for the project.

If there are no cells for the Semi, then there must be some technological issues on the production line, or all of the cells will be used in other projects, like the new Tesla Model Y (in Europe, and in Texas) and later also in the Tesla Cybertruck.

Anyway, the Semi is already in its fourth year since the unveiling in 2017.

Gallery: Tesla Semi

Tesla Semi specs:

  • Acceleration 0-60 mph with 80,000 lbs load – 20 sec
  • Speed up a 5% Grade – 60 mph
  • Range – 300 or 500 miles (483 or 804 km)
  • Powertrain – 4 Independent Motors on Rear Axles
  • Energy Consumption – Less than 2 kWh / mile
  • Fuel Savings – $200,000+
  • Expected Base Price (300 mile range) – $150,000
  • Expected Base Price (500 mile range) – $180,000
  • Base Reservation – $20,000
  • Expected Founders Series Price – $200,000
  • Founders Series Reservation – $200,000

* Prices displayed in USD. International pricing will vary.

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