If Tesla Can Achieve Specs And Price, The Tesla Semi Will Eclipse Diesel

Elon Musk Tesla Semi reveal event

DEC 7 2017 BY EVANNEX 68

Tesla Semi

Tesla Semi Trucks in silver and matte black (Instagram: teslamotorshungary)


As industries go, trucking is a monster. It directly contributes about 5 percent of the United States’ gross domestic product, and its critical support role for other businesses makes its economic influence even greater than that number indicates. “If you bought it, a truck brought it,” as the saying goes. In the US alone, over 7 million people work in the industry – 6% of the entire working population. Trucks haul approximately 70% of the US’s freight, burning 54 billion gallons of fuel each year to do so.

If Tesla can deliver its new Semi at anything near the specs and prices it has announced, this all-pervasive industry will face total disruption. We’re talking typewriters, folks. The cost savings of the Tesla Semi will give companies that deploy it such a competitive edge that the entire industry will have no choice but to quickly follow suit, even if it means ditching their diesel rigs before the end of their planned lives. Of course, supply bottlenecks are likely to slow the transition, but once electric trucks start to prove themselves on the highways, the demise of diesel will be only a matter of time.

If this is such a no-brainer, why do diesel trucks still rule the roads? Several builders have e-trucks in development, including startup Nikola Motors and industry veterans Daimler and Cummins. With such a rich prize at stake, why aren’t they putting the pedal to the metal? Where are the pre-orders for their trucks? The answer, of course, has something to do with vision and audacity, but there’s also a practical aspect: until now, no one in the industry has even dreamed of the kind of numbers that Tesla has thrown out there.

*This article comes to us courtesy of EVANNEX (which also makes aftermarket Tesla accessories). Authored by Charles Morris.

Those numbers are so impressive that even reliably pro-Tesla media outlets (like the one you’re reading) are expressing some skepticism (and the not-a-fan pundits are hooting with derision). Tesla says a Semi with a 300-mile range is expected to sell for $150,000, while a 500-mile model will be priced at $180,000. According to an analysis by The Verge, a comparable diesel-powered semi goes for around $120,000, and burns about $70,000 worth of diesel fuel per year, costing about 54 cents per mile. The Tesla Semi will cost about 26 cents per mile (based on US average electricity costs). According to Tesla, the savings on fuel alone should amount to $200,000 over the truck’s million-mile expected lifetime.

Above: The Street sits down with Walmart’s CEO, Doug McMillon, to discuss the company’s recent order for 15 copies of  the Tesla Semi (Source: The Street)

Other e-truck builders are far more conservative in their expectations, and most expect to focus first on short-haul routes. Julie Ferber, Executive Director of Electrification at Cummins, said the company’s Aeos prototype was designed for a 100-mile-a-day duty cycle. “Long haul is not ready for electrification yet,” she said. “Our calculations are that it would take something like 19,000 pounds of batteries to do 600 miles on a single charge. And from a cost and a weight perspective, that does not make sense.”

Tesla’s claims are far more ambitious, leading to the inevitable question: How in the world do they expect to build the Semi’s massive battery pack so cheaply? After all, 150 grand is only twice the price of a base Model S, and the Semi’s pack will surely need to be at least 8 times larger.

Electrek’s Fred Lambert predicts that the Tesla Semi will have a 1 MWh battery pack, and prior to Tesla’s eye-opening announcement he was expecting the truck to cost around $250,000. Lambert speculates that Tesla must have some new battery technology or other tricks up its sleeve to be able to deliver at the stated price. “I don’t see any other way that they can achieve anything close to what they are claiming,” he writes.

Tesla Semi

A few factoids related to the new Tesla Semi (Source: The Street)

He isn’t the only one. Observers across the media spectrum have been scratching their heads at Tesla’s too-good-to-be-true prices. There would seem to be only two ways Tesla can deliver these numbers: EVangelists are forced to conclude that the secretive company is much closer to the long-sought $100/kWh battery cost tipping point than it has let on up until now; on the other hand, some EV skeptics are convinced that Tesla plans to sell the new truck at a loss (!).

Of course, even if the disruptive Californians can deliver the promised numbers, there are several challenges to be met before diesel rigs start disappearing from the roads. Downtime is cash money in trucking, so building out the as-yet-theoretical Megacharger network will be critical. And no matter how good a financial deal Tesla is able to offer, the Semi may have to prove its reliability on the roads for a couple of years before large-scale orders start to materialize.

Once those pieces of the puzzle are in place however, the stage will be set for a major transformation of the freight-hauling industry – and by extension, the entire world economy. And we haven’t even mentioned Tesla’s plans for platooning and autonomous driving yet…


Written by: Charles Morris

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

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68 Comments on "If Tesla Can Achieve Specs And Price, The Tesla Semi Will Eclipse Diesel"

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Total Cost of Ownership and Operation has to be considered with pack capacity degradation and replacement.

I just ripped apart an 18 year old laptop pack that had 18650 cells and they still work great in flashlights or what ever you find to put them in.. Capacity degradation on these old cells is 30%, still very usable in other applications.

Companies like Walmart and other major shipping companies will always look into TOTAL costs of ownership.

That is why they are ordering them now.

They have NO data on EV trucks putting on 100,000 miles per year, huge loads and daily mega charging.

Most major fleet owners plan ahead for issues like this by planning the obsolescence of the vehicle, by purchasing with the optimal miles in mind, and selling at the optimal point.

According to https://hdstruckdrivinginstitute.com/semi-trucks-numbers/

“Truck drivers drive an estimated 140 billion miles every year, and a single semi drives about 45,000 miles a year on average. According to the Federal Highway Administration, long-distance trucks travel upwards of 100,000 miles a year.”

With Tesla’s million mile breakdown guarantee, a fleet operator would plan to keep a Tesla semi no more than 20 years for local/regional use (Tesla’s target market) or no more than 10 years for long-distance travel.

Either way, no battery replacement would be planned during the fleet ownership term. Especially since both cases are significantly longer than fleets typically keep their diesel trucks.

Drive train covers gears not packs.

FYI — For General Depreciation, the IRS considers OTR Semi Tractors to depreciate over 36 months:

“3-year property.

Tractor units for over-the-road use.”


So many companies that actually outright buy OTR trucks often turn them over on a 3 year schedule. Fleet leases of OTR trucks typically are 2-6 years, up to 10 for local/regional duty.

All well below when anybody would worry about battery replacement.

Once the owners install there own charging station at origin , intermogals and later destination unloading of cargo, the 200000 saving can only go higher. So all you other truck manufacturers start taking pre orders!

My personal opinion is that Elon Musk is anticipating the production cost (mainly batteries). Right now, yes, the battery price is above 100$/kWh. But, in 2 years, for sure the price will drop and the battery capacity will increase. Look at LGs NCM811, or Samsung’s graphene ball. Musk sells the truck at future price, to “steal” the start and also get money from customers today. He needs that money today to increase current production. Risky move, but it appears he is winning. Like Model 3. Two years ago he would sell M3 at a loss, but now he’s making money.

I might be wrong of course.

Well, if someone builds an insanely high amount of anything (like billions of batteries at a single site), cost will ultimately go down to raw materials + small margin for supplier of said raw materials + production cost.
Economy of scale is the key for the production cost. For example, GF1 even houses the company that makes the cell casings directly on site, so no money is wasted in trucking around the air inside of empty casings (like most other manufacturers are forced to, currently).
As for the raw materials: 1 kWh worth of lithium ion batteries of the chemistry that Tesla is currently using contains raw materials and components that are in the cost range of like 70$ at today’s raw materials stock exchange prices (which might be higher than long term supply contracts negotiated previously). Notably, that is without manufacturing cost of the cells or margin of the supplier of the raw materials, so for sure there is a considerable amount on top, but possibly not 100%, but rather like 50-75%. I personally think that Tesla is pretty close to the 100 $/kWh on cell level by now.

If Tesla battery costs had dropped that low it should should up in their Model S/X gross margins. So far it has not.

Tesla is still using the older Panasonic 18650 batteries from Japan for the Model S and Model X. Tesla is planning to switch those over to the new 2170 cells, but that switch has been delayed for some reason. I don’t think I’m going out on a limb to suggest the reason for the delay is the production problem with battery packs from Gigafactory One!

It’s a pretty good bet that Tesla will be using (presumably cheaper) 2170 cells from Gigafactory One for the Semi Truck.

I think EVLover is correct; Tesla is anticipating significantly lower prices for its batteries from Gigafactory One by 2019-2020. Exactly why Tesla thinks it will be able to get batteries at a much lower cost will, I’m sure, be a hot subject of debate over the next months or years.

2170 isn’t meaningfully more cost-effective than 18650 on a per kWh basis. They may have chosen a slightly lower cost/lower performance chemistry. The GF should have the latest machines, so slightly more efficient.

Panasonic isn’t paying for the building, so the cell price will be lower. But Tesla’s factory depreciation will be higher, so the effective cost is the same.

It doesn’t make sense to re-do existing factories to take advantage of these small, incremental savings. But if they were able to achieve large savings they absolutely would go back and re-do existing factories. They haven’t done that.

I don’t think your assertions are correct, which leads to an incorrect conclusion.

“…electrically-powered wheels may come to the trucking market faster than the world of passenger cars…”


TSLA Does have something up it’s sleeve , it’s called the Glass Solid State Fire Proof Battery that is ready for Prime time , Invented by Braga & Goodenough . It has 3 to 5 times more range power Cheaper and easier to build & lasts much much longer than Lithium…… Nobody wants to believe me…… Hear me Now , Believe me Later……lol

Interesting idea, but I think if Tesla had solid state battery tech advanced enough to be sure it could put it into mass production in two years, then we would have heard some rumors about it.

That would be about the same stage of development that LG Chem was at in 2014, when it announced its so-called “200 mile battery” and started taking orders for delivery in 2016. That’s the battery cells which are now in the Chevy Bolt EV and possibly some other PEVs.

And by “Tesla” you mean Panasonic.

No that would be Tesla. The batteries are built to TESLA’s formulation and specs.

Yet you (or certainly others) would claim the Bolt is the LG Bolt? With all the GM designed components and specs built by LG?

So many double standards with GM vs Tesla.

So they both pay the same for batteries by that conclusion.

“And by ‘Tesla’ you mean Panasonic.”

Not necessarily. A radically new battery tech, such as solid state batteries, is more likely to come from some other company, simply because so many other companies and university research teams are working hard trying to commercialize some of the many breakthroughs which have been demonstrated in the lab.

However, since Panasonic is in the process of investing billions in Tesla’s Gigafactory One, and is a full partner there, it seems likely that Panasonic would be fully involved in producing the new battery cells, if and when Tesla and/or Panasonic can license the new tech.

@L’amata said: “TSLA Does have something up it’s sleeve , it’s called the Glass Solid State Fire Proof Battery that is ready for Prime time…”

Tesla Semi battery pack will be using same cell 2170 format and same chemistry as currently used for Model 3, PowerPack, & PowerWall.
Much of the “brick” & “module” assembly (that then make up the pack) is shared across all three of these products for production economy of scale.

Any radical new cell chemistry (i.e. solid state, air, pellet378, etc ) is 5+ years down the road… until then incremental improvements on existing chemistry…

Powerpack and Model 3 aren’t same chemistry, as far as we know. Tesla has said publicly Powerpack uses NMC and Model 3 uses NCA. Tesla told Goldman Sachs privately Semi uses NMC, like Powerpack.

NCA and NMC production uses mostly the same equipment (but not interchangeably, due to contamination). GF presumably has multiple lines set up for each chemistry.

But is Tesla using NCA for the Model 3? I haven’t heard any announcements.

I haven’t heard anything specific, either, but Kurt Kelty’s presentation about the GF in March talked extensively of NCA and only mentioned NMC as a cobalt-intensive chemistry used by the competition. He was so one-sided on the issue I was half-convinced they’d even switched to NCA for energy storage.

Also note that Sumitomo Metal Mining is massively ramping up their NCA cathode powder production. Panasonic is their main (only?) customer and almost all of SMM known cobalt production. If Tesla/Panasonic aren’t using that NCA powder, who is? And where would Tesla/Panasonic get enough cobalt for a NMC Model 3?

@ said: “Powerpack and Model 3 aren’t same chemistry, as far as we know. Tesla has said publicly Powerpack uses NMC and Model 3 uses NCA. Tesla told Goldman Sachs privately Semi uses NMC, like Powerpack.”

Perhaps this would be a good topic for InsideEVs to dig into… if Jeff Dahn’s improved NMC is also powering Model 3? … & Roadster?

I do agree solid state and other miracle batteries are five years from vehicle usage. People who claim otherwise are just fantasizing. The same types said 2170 would have 30% better energy density than the 18650s (it’s actually a bit worse).

Nextgen batteries will show up in cell phones first, where cost is less of an issue. A year or so later they’ll hit extreme niche cars like the $250k Roadster2. Mainstream cars and trucks will come a couple years after that.

If power wall batteries are used in the semi, the load and charge profiles are different.

I don’t know anything about that, but what Tesla DOES have up their sleeve is their battery research they have been doing at Dalhouse University where they have already hit their target of doubling battery lifespan.

They are indeed developing new battery improvements that will find their way into future vehicles like the Semi. Any math done on current batteries will be conservative.


(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

lol, you crack me up dude……

I think selling them at a loss, or break even makes sense. Maybe their goal is to have them out to prove the cost argument and also gather data for future automous operation. More profitable will be to have these trucks operate autonomously, in a convoy for long distance, and have Tesla just provide the shipping service and run these trucks 24/7 almost like what container ships do. If that works, no one will be able to compete with them, not even electric truck competitors.

It’s going to be interesting to see what markets Tesla expands into, but it’s not reasonable to think Tesla is going to start running a freight truck shipping fleet, any more than Peterbilt or Kenworth does.

Tesla wants to sell trucks to UPS and FedEx, not compete with them!

“I think selling them at a loss, or break even makes sense. Maybe their goal is to have them out to prove the cost argument and also gather data for future automous operation.”

A fairly prominent analyst at Morgan Stanley thinks that SpaceX and Tesla will merge:

“Finally, Jonas mentions historical precedent with Tesla’s merger with SolarCity and increasing technological overlap between the companies – specifically with AI:

“Space and automated driving networks are two of the more commonly cited end-markets where advanced software/hardware systems can benefit from machine learning and deep learning.”

Makes sense to me.


Elon will never take SpaceX public. Not as a stand alone company, and not as part of a merger. He will keep it private.

Any claim that they would do otherwise poorly understands Musk and Tesla’s board’s feelings about the negative impacts of taking Tesla public due to shorters non-stop bashing of the company in an attempt to profit off of a drop in share price.

SpaceX going public? Never gonna happen. Not in Elon’s lifetime. Anyone saying otherwise is just dreaming about being able to get their hands on investing into SpaceX.

I think you are on to something…maybe Elon can persuade tesla shorters to STFU if he cuts them a piece of space x lol

Just chiming in. Yeah that won’t happen, Space X going public.
One phenomena I see a lot is speculative stories.
Editor: I need a story on Tesla.
Writer: I got zilch.
Editor: Make something up, about their future.

“I think selling them at a loss”
Er, no. Tesla is too small for that and has too much debt. They need to start making money. I applaud the further electrification of transport but losing money while trying to build a better future isn’t going to help at this point, from a single small company.

Right. The idea that Tesla would sell its Semi Trucks at a loss is ignoring reality pretty firmly. Tesla wound up making essentially no overall profit on its first car, the Roadster, and isn’t likely to repeat that mistake!

It certainly does point up how surprisingly low the prices Tesla has estimated for its Semi Truck, when even perennial Tesla cheerleader Evannex is expressing skepticism!

I think this article covers the various aspects of this issue pretty well. It’s going to be interesting to see, over the next few years, if Tesla can deliver on its goal of undercutting the cost of diesel semi truck shipping!

And of course we will continue to see speculation about how Tesla can, or thinks it can, deliver at such a low price. Personally, I doubt there is any radical new battery tech in the works. My guess is that Elon thinks he can develop his idea for significantly lowering costs by high-speed touchless mass production lines, and plans to use that to significantly reduce the cost of the Semi Truck’s battery packs.

It is pretty far-fetched that everything Musk said in the reveal will come to pass, and pedantic people say no way it will.
Still Musk has been known to pull rabbits out of hats, and in regard to this question, I think he something up his sleeve.

I wonder if the trailers could also have battery capacity. Many times the semi truck drops the trailer off at the off-load location. Batteries that may be part of the trailer can be charged while off-loading, and allow more capacity and distance when the semi returns to hook up once again with the trailer. Long distance trailer activity could have corresponding battery capacity to go along with that of the semi truck. Just a thought.

However it’s not the way most of the trucking industry works (forcing buyers to buy a proprietary trailer or retrofit kit)and the batteries take away from the payload…Furthermore in most cases of the united states truckers can only drive up to 11 hours and must take an 10 hour break along with all sorts of additional restrictions…

“I wonder if the trailers could also have battery capacity”

Your thinking is shared by Bjorn. He thinks they could also have the capability to decouple and couple autonomously.

On separate note. re custom Tesla trailer. I think Tesla will offer it’s own custom trailer. They have said they can carry the same payload as the diesel semi. Pretty tough to do with a battery weighing 10,000 lb+.

Probably lots of weight to be saved in the trailer.

There is already a lot of variation in weight among trailers; a trailer that is mostly aluminum is lighter than one with a wooden floor, altho trailers with wooden floors are less expensive.

There probably is a lot of potential to reduce the weight of the trailer, but probably only by making them considerably more expensive. I think there is also the question of just how light you want to make them. Trailers being blown over in a high wind is already a problem; significantly reducing the weight of the trailer would make that a much more frequent occurrence.

If a trucking company is going to invest in specialized trailers, I think they would be far better off investing in ones with lower drag, rather than significantly lower weight.

It’s amazing how many times this very, very bad idea keeps getting suggested.

If Tesla wanted to reduce the potential market for the Tesla Semi Truck to a tiny niche of what it could be, it could hardly find a better way to do that than to require its semi tractors use only non-standard trailers, ones which would be considerably more expensive than standard trailers.

The reason why the tractor-trailer rig is so popular and so economically advantageous is that trailers are cheap and interchangeable. In theory at least, any trailer can be pulled by any tractor. If you throw away that basic advantage, the entire reason for using tractor-trailer rigs gets thrown out the window.

Yes but that is a mighty big ‘if’. I find it extremely unlikely that Tesla would have such vastly superior technology to anyone else. Especially since no one has heard of it yet either.

If there has been an advancement in the lab they would try to patent it and then it would take years to commercialize. Patents are available to everyone and if there such a patent people would know. Competitors make it their business to know what other people patent.

Well, actually that would be Panasonic since Tesla isn’t making any batteries at all but it’s all the same.

No, more likely is it that Elon Musk is full of sh*t again. The prices quoted are “expected” which gives Tesla a nice excuse when it turns out that the truck will be way more expensive than that. I personally think the truck will be at least $400k (long range that is) if it ever gets to production, which itself is highly doubtful given Tesla’s economic situation.

Of course the 7 cent/kWh Megacharger is another joke but that’s for another day.

Fleet operators are much less susceptible to the psychological barriers that we see in passenger cars, so I fully expect that as soon as they figure out that a Tesla Semi has lower TCO than a more-or-less equivalent diesel, they’ll line up to order at least a few test units. And those test units will turn into a torrent of orders and deliveries as quickly as Tesla can crank ’em out.

I’ve been stressing for years that the primary barrier to much greater adoption of EVs among consumers was not the price or the range of the cars or the availability of public chargers, but the bizarre and just plain wrong perceptions people have about them. Fleet operators don’t have nearly that level of irrationality to overcome, especially once they have spreadsheets showing them how much money they can save while greenwashing their operation.

The Semi could wind up being a much bigger deal than the 3 in a year or two.

Fleet owners will measure TCO with in-fleet trials. That’s why WMT, JBHT, etc. ordered a few semis, to run trials.

Your timeline is way off. Musk said “production” in 2019. He also said “order now and get it in three years”, which is November 2020. Tesla will use the first trucks themselves, on the GF-to-Fremont run and so forth. Walmart, etc. will run small scale trials in 2021. If the trials succeed, Tesla will get larger orders for 2022+ delivery. The $150/180k non-founders price is for 2023+ delivery. Battery costs should be well below $100/kWh by then.

Ah. Greeat points. 150k as 2023 maakes sense.

So 15, 30, are a few. When does a few become many? They would even order 1 if they did not think there was a reason to order one.
So even though it will take years to complete the changeover in truck fleets will begin and they don’t want to be left behind.

Just another person slighting Tesla’s vision I what I see here.

Fundamental problems…The promise of “Reduced maintenance” is still very sketchy…Tesla currently charges $600/year for S/X inspections which were originally required (court forced them to remove this requirement) to continue to receive OTAs…The 1M mile warranty covers powertrain only which is great but what’s the bumper to bumper warranty? Tesla first gen touchscreens in the S were known for dying and even appeared in some earlier X models…These were failing in thousands to tens of thousands of miles, are these going to last 1M miles? What happens if one of the screens die in a Tesla Semi and you’re 100s of miles away from a Tesla Semi service center?

Everyone always seems to forget about “unexpected repairs” for non-powertrain related items outside of the “bumper to bumper” warranty…

Well, the pictures from the reveal show two screens in the semi. I figure when the thing can run on two of four motors, a screen failure would not stop the Semi and allow for safe return to a service location. Touch screens are pretty resilient, in general. I know some at out door storage equipment in operation for like 10 years (they turn so hot that you burn your fingers in the summer when the sun shines on them, and freezing cold in the winter, they endure rain, snow and the occasional user punching them with his fist).

Also, if Tesla would have a massive problem with dying screens, surely the news would have massively reported about it. And 2-3 incidents would be massive enough in the eyes of the trollz…

As for that court thing: Tesla inspections are recommended but were AFAIK never mandatory, so I’d like to see some evidence for that (surely there is an official court report, then?). As the cars are sold in many different countries, one court decision would be required in every single one…

Found this on google most likely faster than it took you to type above…
Mandatory inspections (they were sued and “backed down”):

There’s hundreds if not thousands of “blank screens of death” check out any Tesla forum or reddit…
Here’s one thread were there are already more than “2 or 3” https://teslamotorsclub.com/tmc/threads/center-touchscreen-blank-screen-of-death.57639/

Bacardi said:

“Tesla first gen touchscreens in the S were known for dying and even appeared in some earlier X models…”

While I have no doubt there were a few screen failures, this is the first time I’ve ever seen anyone claim it was a frequent problem. I don’t recall ever reading any discussion of that on the very active Tesla Motors Club forum.

I do recall reading about screens locking up as one of the more common problems, but I’m pretty sure that is a software problem, not a hardware problem.

Are you sure, Bacardi, that you’re not confusing a few anecdotes with a problem which occurs with some frequency?

Admittedly, there is a lot of interest in this product….

INBEV (Budweiser in this country) just ordered 40 – TESLA’s LARGEST ORDER to date.

I’d gather they’ll put these on dozens of different routes to see what cost-savings they can acrue by switching to electrics.

All these companies, knowing that they will be ‘once bit, twice shy’, will pro-actively want to do their own economic analysis – and not to be left out should any savings be compelling.

They should do very well in Quebec where the electricity is almost free, for instance.

For various applications, such as beer trucks, which make lots of stops and are in urban areas, they would be of great benefit, clean, quiet.
Also running costs where electricity is inexpensive, as you say, is another point.

40 is also a good number of them so they could test in various locations across the country. Plus I think they wanted to get on the list with a decent order so that they would have a bunch of them already if they turned out to be as good as Musk says they will be.


“Electrek’s Fred Lambert predicts that the Tesla Semi will have a 1 MWh battery pack,”

wow, fred can multiply 2 kwh/mile times 500.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

Truckers will soon be mandated to take rest periods and to be digitally tracked.
All Tesla needs to do is put these big@zs chargers for these in key locations. They can use these as rest stops while they charge.

They can use the charging time as part of their mandated rest time.

I don’t remember seeing this anywhere, but the routing software for the Tesla trucks must take full advantage of automatic brake regeneration. Creating new routes to maximize brake regen along the way. Just imagine how much energy can be put back into the battery pack while slowing the heavy loaded truck on steep declines.

Smart Charging based on the route could leave space in the pack to allow for regen power to fill the pack the rest of the way. Maximizing the benefit of brake regen, and reducing the charging costs. So many opportunities for operators to save on per mile costs.

“Creating new routes to maximize brake regen along the way.”

Nope, not a bit of it. The most energy efficient route will be the one which is (a) the shortest and (b) allows the closest to a steady speed without slowing or stopping. A lot of use of regen means a lot of energy is being lost. Even the most efficient regen will always be significantly less than 100% efficient; far better to just keep going at a steady speed, and not waste energy braking and accelerating.

Unless you’re hauling heavy loads down hill and deadheading up hill.

Naw Pushi, Alan’s point in certain cases is valid. First off, in the general case let it be prefaced that we’re not talking about a huge amount of energy here anyway. That is why Diamler Trucks use Dynamic Braking resistors since they obviously figured the cost of a 2 quadrant controller and resistors was cheaper than the cost of a 4 quadrant controller (Now, that is something I FIND hard to believe, but Diamler did it that way so whatever). The most important feature of regeneration, whether productively using the juice to recharge batteries, or just pissing it away as heat, is to save on brake pad wear. Alan’s point of two different routes obviously takes the point that the source and end destination will be at the same elevations. Now one route could have many quick stops that would be faster than the truck’s regeneration could accomodate and therefore friction brakes must be used. However, if the choice is a totally flat route vs an oscillating up and down one, then obviously the flat one is better, even with less regeneration. Or the advice give NY Times’ Broder to arbitrarily ‘Speed up and slow down that you can use… Read more »

Did Tesla really misspell fuel as “FULE” in the bottom right of their ad??

Looks to me like that… infographic? PowerPoint slide? …was created by “The Street” rather than Tesla.

Toothbrush to work? A clothes application: sa So the size of the pack is not specified. Many are speculating on, say, a five-fold reduction in battery cost. Eg, 1mwh battery selling for 2x the 100kwh batteries in S/x. However, where is the speculation on other tech playing a part in this? That is, may we assume the battery is the same or near same cost as S/x? If yes, then let’s come up with “nda” ideas (Tesla fine print, aka special sauce) to get to 500 miles on a eg 200kwh pack. (Even better, go for 100 or even 50kwh because why expect the rest of the semi parts to be built and sold for less than say fifty percent of the total cost?) Something like: In order to get the full 500-miles, the semi must be driven on Tesla-brand ElectrifiedRoadways (Tm). These roads will be equipped with, say, electric lines. Better still, the divider could be a row of Powerpacks, of course recharged via solar and wind. Maybe the ~100kwh battery would be to enable rapid acceleration, the energy for which is not available from the Powerpack divider. Or maybe the battery is for the final ten-mile leg between… Read more »