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Tesla Semi completes first 500-mile journey with full load

All-electric Class 8 truck finishes test run weighing 81,000 pounds

Tesla’s all-electric Class 8 Semi truck has taken an 81,000-pound load on a 500-mile run, according to CEO Elon Musk. (Photo: Tesla)

The Tesla Semi has completed a 500-mile trip with a load weighing 81,000 pounds, Tesla owner Elon Musk tweeted Saturday.

The first test run was an important step for the Austin, Texas-based company’s all-electric Class 8 commercial truck, which was supposed to be in production in 2019.

Tesla’s Semi program has suffered repeated delays, including the departure of a key executive and supply chain issues. Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) first announced the Semi-truck back in 2017.

The Semi truck’s first deliveries are scheduled to PepsiCo subsidiary Frito-Lay sometime over the next several weeks. Tesla has already installed a Megacharger on a Frito-Lay distribution site in Modesto, California.

Along with PepsiCo, the Semi has attracted thousands of orders from fleets. Mass production of the Semi — up to 50,000 units per year — is expected to take place at Tesla’s Austin Gigafactory, which also produces the Model Y electric vehicle.

According to Tesla, the Semi will be able to accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 20 seconds for a fully loaded truck with a combined gross combination weight of 82,000 pounds. The estimated fuel savings versus a conventional diesel-powered truck is $200,000 over three years.


The Semi was previously priced at $150,000 for the 300-mile range version and $180,000 for the 500-mile truck, according to previous information on the Tesla website. It’s unclear if prices have changed.

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17 Comments

  1. Joe

    Big deal. First off the tesla was over gross. I guess they will give a variance to run one?
    Next 500 miles is about average any more. Today 700 miles is a big deal with these slow trucks and eld regs.
    Then theirs getting a recharge. Run the truck to its limit will that leave any juice for the sleeper time. Also I can see the headaches now getting to park to do a 10 and recharge. That should be fun.
    Then what about waiting out a storm or bad roads in a rest area for 2 or 3 days. I can see it now. What about heat and cooking wile this is going on.
    The DOT will have to change the rules for the EV otr.
    I can see local day cab. That would work
    Do your 10 or 12 hours get back to the yard plug in go home. But OTR… haaaa haaaaa haaaa haaaaa.

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Noi Mahoney

Noi Mahoney is a Texas-based journalist who covers cross-border trade, logistics and supply chains for FreightWaves. He graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in English in 1998. Mahoney has more than 20 years experience as a journalist, working for newspapers in Florida, Maryland and Texas. Contact [email protected]