autoevolution
Car video reviews:
 

First Look: Tesla Semi Real World Photo Confirms Futuristic Design

Last month, Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced the Semi presentation event would be pushed back to October 26, bringing unwanted flashbacks of the company's previous failures of sticking to its self-imposed schedule.
Tesla Semi electric truck spotted 1 photo
However, we guess we could cut it some slack this time with the Model 3 production ramp-up requiring the undivided attention of most of the staff. Besides, this is a completely new type of vehicle we're talking about, and even with a one-month delay, Tesla still moved quite rapidly with its development.

It's worth remembering that, much like the Model 3 in March 2016, the Semi we'll see on the 26th is still going to be a concept. If it mirrors the Model 3 pattern, then its design will be at least 90% identical to the production version that will follow. If anything, that's even more likely with the truck than with the electric sedan.

All Tesla vehicles are built with the best possible aerodynamics in mind, but that should be taken to the next level for the Semi. Being a commercial vehicle, aesthetics aren't going to be as important as for a passenger car. Range, on the other hand, will, and a good airflow around the vehicle is proven to prolong the time between charges.

Tesla only used one photo so far to tease its upcoming all-electric truck, but it was enough to get an idea of what it was going to look like. Not that we had that many doubts about it: it was going to be a streamlined vehicle with a slightly futuristic look - at least compared to the rest of its siblings.

This image that first appeared on Reddit shows the first real-world spotting of the long-range battery-powered hauler, and it couldn't be more telling even if it wanted. The Tesla Semi sits on a trailer pulled by a classic American truck, and the difference between the two is striking. It's as if the latest supercar concept crashed at a historical vehicle rally.

If you feel there are important inconsistencies with the teaser image, that's because the Semi isn't wearing its wind deflector (or shroud). When it is pulling tall trailers, that will go on top of the cabin to help divert the air around the boxy shape it tows behind. You can actually see it lying on the ground just to the left of the picture.

The truck is also missing its side mirrors, something that will unfortunately not float on the production version. All-round visibility should be a breeze, though, with the Semi sporting a huge windshield and generous side windows, as well as what looks like a pretty roomy cabin. If you were thinking about becoming a trucker, this might be the perfect time. But hurry up because the plan is to make these things autonomous eventually.

Technical specs have largely been missing, with just some reports claiming a maximum range between 200 and 300 miles. Tesla hasn't commented on those, but Musk did say it would use "several" Model 3 motors and that it would be "a beast." He also famously said it would have no problem winning a tug-of-war battle with any diesel truck while going uphill. Well, Musk never needed any help creating hype around his products, but we'll see how much of it's true on October 26.

 
 
 
 
 

Would you like AUTOEVOLUTION to send you notifications?

You will only receive our top stories