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Tesla Semi Truck Unveiled; Plus New Roadster, 'Quickest Car in the World'


Elon Musk is challenging diesel vehicles with the new Tesla semi-truck.

As Musk said about the Roadster, the unveiling marked "a hardcore smackdown to gasoline cars".

Musk unveiled the Roadster toward the end of an event that was supposed to be all about Tesla's new Semi trucks.

Elon Musk surprises everyone with a new Roadster.

From there, the specs diverge.

Daimler's E-FUSO Vision One is an all-electric heavy-duty truck that can travel almost 220 miles on a single charge - not nearly as far as Tesla's. There's also a version with a 300-mile range. Musk said it will be able to maintain a speed of 65 miles per hour while going up a 5 percent grade.

The Roadster will also be able to run a quarter mile from stop in 8.8 seconds, Tesla said. It'll do the quarter-mile in 8.9 seconds, and hit a top speed in excess of 250 miles per hour. Tesla claims a range of 500 miles at motorway speed. The vehicle will be available in 2020. The semi, which is set to start production in 2019, is accepting pre-orders for $5,000 apiece.

Mr Musk did not reveal the lorry's price.

Suggested retail price is $200,000, Tesla said.


"We believe electric trucks will be most beneficial on local and dray routes, and we look forward to utilizing this new, sustainable technology", said John Roberts, president and CEO of J.B. Hunt, in a statement Friday.

But auto industry experts questioned whether Tesla would be able to deliver the new vehicles given its problems getting the new mid-priced Model 3 off the production line.

The Roadster will cost $200,000 and a $50,000 deposit will be required to reserve one.

With a full load, the truck can still reach that speed in 20 seconds, according to Musk, much faster than any diesel-powered truck. The company says that will translate into thousands of dollars in savings.

Tesla said it is a safer truck as well. Regulations require commercial trucks to be sidelined if their windshields are cracked in a way that could affect the driver's view.

But Tesla has pulled back recently due to concerns about Model 3 production and integration issues with Tesla's acquisition of solar panel company SolarCity - a firm co-founded by two of Musk's cousins. The anemic number fell far short of expectations; the company had received 140,000 advance orders for the vehicle within hours of it being announced in the spring of 2016.

But problems with the Model 3 were far from the minds of attendees at Tesla's pep rally Thursday.

The company unveiled its new electric semitractor-trailer Thursday night near its design center in Hawthorne, California.

Acceleration junkie and Tesla drag racing veteran Brooks from Drag Times documented his experience blasting off from a standstill to over 80 miles per hour, in record-setting fashion, inside a Tesla Roadster prototype.

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