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On Thursday night, Tesla presented the first electric semi truck, and – to everyone’s surprise – a new sports car.

 

Semi, At Last

The long-awaited unveiling of the semi truck took place at Tesla’s Hawthorne, California facility on Thursday. It has a range of up to 500 miles.

During the event, Tesla pitched the semi-trailer truck as a safe, comfortable, and economical vehicle. Elon Musk, the company’s CEO, has even assured on his Twitter account that, “it can transform into a robot, fight aliens and make one hell of a latte.”

Meanwhile, it is a good occasion for all Tesla’s enthusiasts to practice some patience, however, as the car will not go into production before 2019.

 

The Market

Experts notice that the semi truck is about to enter a potentially lucrative yet competitive market. Only in USA there are about 3.5 million truck drivers, but convincing them to switch from diesel-powered trucks to electric Tesla might not be that easy. In terms of range, Tesla might not be very competitive. Additionally, purchasing a powerful enough battery might simply be prohibitively expensive for most drivers.

As to the cost of the new semi-truck, Tesla says in contrast to high costs of fuel and maintenance of diesel-powered vehicles – the electric truck will be more economical. Compared to diesel cars, the total savings per mile will be of about 20%, the company informs. For the final price of an individual truck, we will need to wait a bit longer.

Among other technological advances, Tesla’s semis truck offers an enhanced autopilot options, lane-keeping control feature, and a rollover protection.

The Roadster

Musk continued the presentation with an unexpected unveiling of the Roadster, an electric sports car that Tesla promises to launch by 2020. The company promotes the car as “the quickest car in the world, with record-setting acceleration, range and performance.”

While the vehicle’s technological capacity has grasped everyone’s attention, many call into question whether Tesla will deliver on its promises. For now, the production of the Model 3 is experiencing serious delays. Furthermore, the company itself is under a lot of pressure due to allegations of gender and racial discrimination and an above-average rate of injuries among employees.

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