Skip to main content

Car FYI's 2021 Electrified Haulers Showcase: Tesla Semi

Photo Credit: Tesla Inc.


Having already achieved fame for inspiring the modern fully electric vehicle renaissance this century with passenger cars, Tesla Motors has set sights on converting their success into the commercial vehicle industry. First introduced in 2017, the Tesla Semi’s bold design and ingenuity makes the truck more than just a fully electrified transporter.  

Being offered in versions with a range of 475 kilometers or 800 kilometers, the Tesla Semi boasts the credentials for being a one of the smartest, safest and comfortable Class 8 commercial trucks on the road. With the four electric motors mounted at the two rear axles of the vehicle, the Semi’s lack of the traditional engine compartment ahead of the driver helped Tesla conceive a front design resembling a cab over truck layout or a modern passenger train. With a 0.36 drag coefficient, the battery electric hauler’s unique shape is aided by an imaginative cabin layout. 


Photo Credit: Tesla Inc.



Placing the truck operator in a centralized driving position inside the Semi offers a number of advantages according to Tesla. Better visibility and improved rollover protection as well as better weight balance is said to be achieved with the centered driver compartment. Providing the driver with a full array of surround view cameras for safe maneuvering, the Tesla Semi truck also comes equipped with active safety features such as automatic braking. Tesla’s Autopilot allowing for supervised computer-controlled driving is also offered on the electric transport truck. 

As typical with Tesla products prior to production, the industry-disrupting company has been tight-lipped on many specific technical details of the Semi truck. No official numbers of output from the electric motors or capacity of the battery packs has been released of as April 2021. Some rather exciting news about the type of batteries being developed for the Tesla Semi was announced last year. Tesla’s cobalt-free 4680 battery cell featuring a tabless design utilizes silicon anodes. Along with touting a higher energy storage potential, the new battery assembly is less expensive to produce.

The Tesla Semi truck is set to become the first large electric transporter to have a prominent presence on North American roads thanks to the environmental sustainability goals being set in motion by major companies. In Canada, grocery store giant Loblaw Companies Limited made an immediate commitment to the battery electric transport truck announcing plans to acquire 25 vehicles a day after the Elon Musk-hosted press conference revealed the Semi to the world. Tesla’s commercial hauler also secured two massive orders from Walmart Canada and Pride Group Enterprises.


Photo Credit: Tesla Inc.



Walmart Canada originally planning to acquire just 10 Tesla Semis in 2018 but upped their order to 40 trucks the following year. In late September of 2020, the giant discount store chain again increased their reservation to 130 Tesla Semi tractors as part of a more aggressive investment into an environmentally-friendly vision. Walmart Canada will have 20 percent of their total vehicle fleet being electric powered by 2022 with longer term goals for a fully alternative power fleet by 2028.

A Mississauga-based company founded in 2010 by Indian immigrant brothers, Pride Group Enterprises has grown to become a serious player in the trucking industry in sales, rental, leasing as well as logistics across Canada and the United States. Pride Group Enterprises announced in November of last year that they plan to incorporate at least 150 Tesla Semi tractor units into their fleet. Depending on market conditions, the trucking conglomerate has an option to purchase up to 500 examples of the electrified hauler.

Smaller orders for the Tesla Semi have also been rolling onto the battery electric vehicle maker from Canadian entities. Announced in early April, Mosaic Forest Management will trial a fleet of three vehicles for use in the logging sector.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Car FYI's 2024 Canadian Automotive Guide: Ferrari

Photo Credit: Ferrari S.p.A. Product Lineup: 296 GTB, 296 GTS, Portofino M, Purosangue, Roma, Roma Spider, SF90 Spider, SF90 Stradale, SF90 XX Spider, SF90 XX Stradale Overall Brand Impression:  The devotion of the Italian artisans that has kept Ferrari as a premium sports car leader stretches right back to the company’s founder. However, while Enzo Ferrari believed in the construction of pure performance machines in disregard for creature comforts, today’s vehicles are assembled with more consideration of customers seeking luxury alongside supercar power. Despite a long resistance to engaging in the popular crossover category, Ferrari demonstrates a level of concession to the mass market in 2024 by introducing the all-new Purosangue. The Purosangue joins an exciting 2024 Ferrari lineup that also includes the introduction of the brand’s first street legal XX program vehicle. What’s New for 2024:  Every vehicle in Ferrari’s 2024 lineup is a merger of style and power. An auto brand reno

Car FYI's 2024 Canadian Automotive Guide: Fiat

Photo Credit: Stellantis Product Lineup: 500e, 500x Overall Brand Impression:  When Fiat reentered North American in 2011, there were high hopes that the Italian car make’s small yet stylish products would establish a healthy niche. Although the distinctive design of the Fiat 500 can still attract admiring stares, the brand has amounted to a very tiny share of the market with the 500x crossover being the only product available in recent years. The Fiat 500 subcompact’s reintroduction to the United States and Canada in 2024 as an entirely electric model line could allow this Stellantis brand to gain new relevance among motorists. What’s New for 2024:  The subcompact Fiat 500 returns to the United States and Canada for 2024 exclusively as a battery electric vehicle. Assembled within a tidy, elegant Italian-styled package, the 2024 Fiat 500e features a powertrain consisting of a 42-kWh battery pack as well as an electric motor generating 118 horsepower and 162 lb.-ft. of torque. With a ma

IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship: Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach Review

Photo Credit: Automobili Lamborghini S.p.A. untitled A companion to the NTT IndyCar Series finale weekend on the streets of Long Beach, the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship staged a 26-car race on Saturday consisting of DPi, GTLM and GTD class machines. With the conclusion of the 1-hour, 40-minute Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach sports car event, the overall winner was the #31 Whelen Engineering Racing Cadillac shared by the driving duo of Felipe Nasr and Pipo Derani. The victory was a decisive weekend for the Whelen Engineering Racing team that had scored the pole position and went on to take the checkered flag with a 10.95-second gap over the #01 Cadillac fielded by Chip Ganassi Racing with Kevin Magnussen and Renger van der Zande. Corvette Racing enjoyed a dominant outing in the GTLM category. Nick Tandy and Tommy Milner in the #4 Chevrolet Corvette C8.R beat the #3 car shared by Antonio Garcia and Jordan Taylor. Only three GTLM class vehicles ran at Long Be