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Tesla's electric big rigs may focus on shorter routes

Allegedly, they will have a 200- to 300-mile range off a full battery charge.
David Lumb, @OutOnALumb
August 24, 2017
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Tesla's been teasing its all-electric big rigs since April, but details have been scarce ahead of its planned grand unveiling in September. Heck, Reuters had to peer into DMV emails to discover that the company intends to link its trucks together in self-driving "platoons" for efficiency. The news outlet has once again unearthed new info on the cargo hauling vehicles: They'll reportedly have a range between 200 and 300 miles on a single charge.

Scott Perry, an executive at Miami-based fleet management company Ryder System, Inc, shared the info with Reuters after claiming to have met with Tesla earlier in the year. If true, that would put the automaker's semis at around the same per-charge range as Tesla's commercial vehicles -- and far below the 1,000 miles diesel trucks can drive from a full tank of fuel.

Perry claimed that Tesla's described its electric semi model as a "day cab" with no sleeper berth, which fits the range. That would qualify them for some of the shortest trips truckers make -- say, from the train yard or airport to a nearby warehouse, or from there to a store or factory. But there are more of those than you might think: The chief strategy officer of Toronto-based Fleet Complete told Reuters that those make up about 30 percent of US trucking jobs.

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