USA: Tesla Set to Unveil Electric Semi-truck in September

Elon Musk





DETROIT — Tesla CEO Elon Musk says the company plans to unveil an electric semi-truck in September.

Musk tweeted the announcement Thursday. He offered no other details about the semi, such as whether it will be equipped with Tesla’s partially self-driving Autopilot mode.

Musk also said the company plans to unveil a pickup truck in 18 to 24 months.

Tesla currently sells two electric vehicles, the Model S sedan and Model X SUV. Its lower-cost Model 3 electric car is due out by the end of this year.

But Musk revealed last summer that the Palo Alto, California-based company is working on several more vehicles, including the semi and a minibus.

Tesla shares rose nearly 3 percent in late trading Thursday in response to Musk’s tweet.

Tesla’s chief technical officer, JB Straubel, has also discussed the role Tesla could play in the trucking industry.

“I can’t say too much about the new products and the things we are developing, but from a pure technology point of view, everything that we’ve done on vehicles translates directly into trucks,” Straubel said at a forum in 2016. “There’s no reason that today you can’t make a very compelling electric truck.”

Musk will have some competition in electric trucking.

Daimler, Mercedes’ parent company, first showed off its electric truck in November. Guillen actually led Daimler’s semi truck program before joining Tesla in 2012.

Daimler’s electric truck.
(Daimler)

Daimler is testing the vehicle, which can drive 124 miles on a single charge, on public roads in Germany. The company said in February it was talking to 20 potential customers about its electric truck.

Tesla also plans to build a self-driving, electric bus, Musk wrote in his “Master Plan,” but he has yet to disclose a timeline for that project.