New Tesla truck starts at $150,000

How can such a high-tech truck cost so little?

It has been announced that the expected price for a 300-mile range Tesla Semi model will be $150,000, while the base price for the 500-mile model will be $180,000.

Further, The Founders Series Semi, which can be reserved today, costs $200,000, according to ZDNet.

These prices are significantly lower than what experts in the trucking industry projected. For comparison, most diesel semi trucks today cost around $120,000. Electrek expected the cost to be closer to $250,000 for the most simple model.

The total cost per mile is projected to be $1.26 compared to a diesel truck’s $1.51 cost per mile. Although the Tesla truck will cost about $30,000 more than the upfront cost of a diesel truck, Tesla argues that the upfront higher price is nothing when taking into consideration the long-term maintenance and fuel saving.

Tesla claims that owners will get a two-year payback and $200,000+ in fuel savings.

In order to reserve the new Founders Series Semi truck, you have to make a $5,000 credit card payment and then wire the remaining balance within 10 days of making the reservation. For example, if you were to purchase this model, you would have to wire the remaining $195,000 within 10 days of the deposit payment. There are only 1000 of the Founders Series Semi truck available.

The other 2 models of the Tesla truck are available for a reservation price of $20,000.

Although Tesla has been prompt in taking reservations, the actual arrival of your truck is not so concrete; Tesla makes no guarantees about the timing of delivery.

Walmart and J.B. Hunt Transport Services have announced that they have reserved multiple Tesla trucks. J.B. Hunt, a Michigan-based grocery chain Meijer, Inc., placed a $5,000 deposit on 4 of the new trucks – totaling $20,000. Walmart has already preordered 15 Tesla trucks. Walmart explained that 5 trucks will be used in the U.S.; whereas, 10 will be used in Canada.

Further, Canadian grocery firm Loblaws has ordered 25 Tesla trucks.

The Tesla truck is not your average truck

Instead of a motor under the hood of this truck, there are 4 independent motors located on the rear axles.

The driver’s seat is not positioned on the left side of the cab, instead, the driver’s seat is positioned in the center of the cab over the nose of the truck. Tesla believes this seat position allows for a more clear view.

ZDNet reported the truck can reach 60mph with an 80,000lb load (36,287kg) within 20 seconds and drive at 65mph on a road with a five percent gradient.

It also features jackknife protection, sensors, and cameras meant to reduce blind spots, according to Engadget. It also features Enhanced Autopilot, as well as emergency braking and lane-keep assist.

Many critics wonder how Tesla can afford to sell the truck for such a low price when the cost of 1 MWh battery alone costs up to $400,000. 

Tesla must have some new technology or other tricks up its sleeve to be able to make the economics work, according to Electrek.