Tesla launches electric prime mover

Tesla has unveiled the details of its highly anticipated electric prime mover, the Tesla Semi, in California last week.

According to Tesla CEO, Elon Musk, the Tesla Semi boasts a 500-mile (ca. 800km) range while carrying as 80,000lb (36-tonne) load

According to Tesla, the unladen vehicle achieves 0-60mph (ca. 96km/h) in five seconds, which the company says is compared to 15 seconds in a comparable diesel prime mover.

Carrying an 80,000 lb (36-tonne) load, the Tesla semi does 0-60mph (ca. 96km/h) in 20 seconds, which Tesla says usually takes a diesel prime mover a minute.

It can reportedly climb a five per cent grade at 65mph (ca. 105km/h), requires no gear changes, and regenerative braking recovers 98 per cent of kinetic energy to the battery, therefore saving on brake life.

The Tesla Semi comes standard with Enhanced Autopilot, the Tesla Semi features Automatic Emergency Braking, Automatic Lane Keeping, Lane Departure Warning, and event recording.

Tesla Semi can also travel in a convoy, where one or several Semi trucks will be able to autonomously follow a lead Semi.

The launch has prompted divided reactions from numerous media outlets, which have described the Tesla Semi as both 'Game-Changing' and 'too ambitious' – while many have also called Tesla's production issues into play, questioning the company's ability to mass produce the vehicle.

Production is expected in 2019.

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