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Why The Long-Awaited Tesla Semi Could Be Doomed To Fail
The Tesla Semi purports to accelerate extremely fast for a truck — 0 to 60 mph in 20 seconds with a full load — and its standard features like autopilot can make long-haul trips effortless. However, questions remain about how long it can stay operational, and when compared to the average trucking expenses of conventional semi trucks, the Semi looks much less appealing.
According to trucking financing service Bobtail, conventional semi trucks have engines capable of lasting 700,000 miles to even a million miles, and when regularly maintained, these trucks can continue operating after two decades. As for maintenance, the average semi truck repair costs go for about $15,000 per year, via the International Used Truck Centers and Truckers Report.
EV battery replacement can reach nearly $16,000 for a base Tesla Model 3 — but the Semi makes use of three electric motors. Not only is it bigger than a Model 3, but it will also be subjected to more abuse from hauling cargo, possibly wearing down those batteries quicker than usual. It seems impractical compared to the more durable, faster-refueling diesel engine alternative.