A production version of the long-delayed Tesla Semi will be shown today in a customer handover ceremony at the firm’s Nevada Gigafactory.

The HGV, first shown in prototype form in 2017, is rumoured to be offered with either a 600kWh or 1000kWh battery for 300 and 500-mile ranges respectively.

It has completed a 500-mile drive fully laden (at 81,000lbs or 36,741kg), Tesla CEO Elon Musk claimed in a recent Twitter post.

The rival Daf CF Electric – a European-style cab-forward lorry – is offered with a 315kWh battery, giving a 137-mile range (in tractor configuration). It has a gross combined mass (the maximum weight of the HGV and trailer) of 37,000kg.

Musk denied that the Semi uses the more energy-dense 4680 cells on Tesla’s recent third-quarter earnings call.

“The Semi doesn’t use the 4680s. We’re making Model Ys; some of the Model Ys coming out of Giga Texas [factory] are 4680,” said Musk, implying that supply of the cells was being diverted to cars.

Tesla has claimed energy consumption below 2kWh per mile for the Semi and the ability to replenish 70% of a charge in just 30 minutes using a Megacharger – the first of which was installed at the Nevada Gigafactory.

A tri-motor powertrain – driving the two rear axles – dispatches the 0-60mph sprint in 20sec fully laden or 5.0sec without cargo.

Tesla originally stated the Semi would use four motors, and a high-performance model – in the mould of the Model S Plaid – isn’t out of the question.

Inside, a central seat is flanked by two infotainment displays, each displaying a blindspot camera view for its respective side of the HGV. The left also displays diagnostic data such as speed and charge level, while the right also shows navigation.

When the Semi was first shown in prototype form five years ago, slated for a 2019 launch, Tesla said it would be priced between $150,000 and $180,000. However, given the increased cost of vehicle production and supply-chain problems, this cost is likely to have risen significantly. 





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