After weeks of teasing, Elon Musk rolled out the Semi, his vision of the best solution for cargo transport by road. And along with that, Tesla sprang a surprise by rolling out the new Roadster, an electric sportscar that is claimed to achieve a 1.9 second 0-60mph rating.
The Roadster name harks back to the first car that Tesla made in 2008, although by now we can expect something far more connected, autonomous and with better range.
“The point of doing this is just to give a hardcore smackdown to gasoline cars,” Musk said. “Driving a gasoline sports car is going to feel like a steam engine with a side of quiche.”
On the Semi, Musk is promising a 500-mile range along with a lower operating cost than IC engine driven trucks by a margin of 20%. He also announced the setting up of Megacharger stations that are capable of charging the trucks for a 400-mile range in thirty minutes.
Another major selling point is thermonuclear explosion proof windshields.
Safety features include enhanced autopilot, lane-keeping technology, and a design that makes jackknifing “impossible”, Musk said.
In typical Musk fashion, he foretold this as the demise of diesel fuelled trucks on purely economic considerations.
Tesla is currently facing a massive production bottleneck on its much-hyped Model 3, with almost 500,000 advance bookings adding pressure. It is reported that the cars are being hand-assembled at a rate of only a couple of hundred a month instead of the planned thousands.
This has also resulted in record operating losses being announced for the first half of the year.