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Future T≡SLA vehicles beyond S ≡ X Y...

Discussion in 'Electric Vehicles' started by Guy Weathersby, Jan 7, 2017.

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  1. Guy Weathersby

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    I am not sure that I understand your commitment. I never mentioned anything that I would call a large truck. I would consider the pickup to be a small truck and everyone that I have seen thinks that it will be based on the Model X. Tesla's planed large truck is the semi, which clearly is a totally different platform.

    My hunch is that eventually Gigafactory One will expand to do all the vehicles based on the current platforms for western North America and that the Fremont plant will build the semi and other relatively low volume vehicles. But that is pure speculation.
     
  2. Red Sage

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    To me, a "pickup, mini bus, and other vehicles" qualify as large trucks. Please note that while several Tesla Enthusiasts have claimed they'd like to have a small pickup from them, that is not the market that Elon Musk has noted at all. In particular, he has spoken of the Ford F-Series. Even though their fuel economy has improved in recent years, those are the single most popular type of ICE vehicles sold in the U.S. And generally speaking, they use more fuel than everything else, while expelling more pollutants in the process.

    The F-Series is a full-sized pickup truck, not the smaller types, such as a Ford Ranger, Dodge/RAM Dakota, Chevrolet Colorado/GMC Canyon, Toyota Tacoma, or Nissan Frontier. The smaller trucks really don't sell very well at all compared to full sized trucks. The Chevrolet Colorado sold over 100,000 units in 2016 for the first time since 2005. Meanwhile, the Chevrolet Silverado has sold no less than 500,000 units in nine of the last 15 years, and never less than 300,000 (lowest in 2009, and climbing since). The Ford Ranger has been gone since 2012, but it only sold 19,366 that year and hadn't been over 100,000 since 2005. On the other hand, the Ford F-Series is the perennial winner in across-the-board sales, clearing 600,000 in 11 of the past 15 years, and never less than 400,000 (lowest in 2009), while moving beyond 800,000 at least five times, including 2016 at 820,799 units sold.

    It is not possible to effectively build a pickup truck on a platform such as the Model S or Model X. Elon mentioned semi-trucks, but he also mentioned 'heavy duty' vehicles. I take those to be dump trucks, garbage trucks, and flatbeds. Many of those are based on pickup truck platforms, that have similar numerical nomenclature across brands. Where Ford might use '350', Chevrolet and Dodge/RAM might use '3500' instead, following a pattern through 450/4500, 550/5500, and so on. I think the biggest Ford I've seen was an F-750, and it was positively HUGE. Generally speaking, it seems those numbers might loosely refer to towing capacity, as designated by Class III, Class IV, Class V and so on.

    Yes, there have been some Tesla Enthusiasts that suggested that all they personally need is something like a Tacoma, Frontier, or at most a Ridgeline... I have always pointed out that the extremely low sales of such vehicles would not be attractive to Tesla at all. Beyond that, I have noted the relative disaster that starting with small trucks has served to be for Nissan and Toyota as a result of the strategy of 'going small' first. Because the Nissan Titan and Toyota Tundra, were really just the same platform as their smaller trucks with a bigger body at first. So they didn't have the proper towing capacity or payload that was expected of vehicles with a full-sized pickup bed. In direct comparisons with Ford, Chevrolet, and Dodge vehicles, the Nissan and Toyota full-sized trucks were found to be woefully lacking, and have never recovered from the reputation earned back then. Not even after improving their trucks. The Titan has sold less than 25,000 units per year for eight years straight. The Tundra does at least manage to move 100,000+ units most years, but has only crossed 120,000 four times (2005-2008) and only passed 150,000 once (2007). Heck, even the Dodge/RAM Pickup has managed no less than 300,000 units in 10 of the last 15 years, while never going below 177,268 (2009).

    When Tesla enters the pickup truck market, they must do so with full sized pickup trucks, no doubt. And they must build something that blows away the competition, hands down. Otherwise, they would suffer a complete and total humiliation that might take decades to recover from. That cannot be done by building on the Tesla Generation II platform that was the Model S and Model X. It must be done from the ground up as a purpose built project designed to make the most of an electric drivetrain by showing how instantaneous delivery of torque makes for superior hauling and towing over long distances, and with fast, convenient charging.


    Imagine not needing the diesel dually at all?
     
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    • Guy Weathersby

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      You clearly know a lot more about trucks than I. But I will point out the NHTSA definition of large truck does not include vehicles like the F-150. Other definitions might vary.
       
    • garsh

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      Guy, you're probably thinking about the difference between a light-duty truck and medium- or heavy-duty trucks. Almost all pickup trucks (with the exception of some one-ton varieties) are classified as light-duty.

      Red, within the light-duty truck category, we then have full-size pickups (like the F-150) and compact pickups (like the Chevy Colorado).

      So in the interest of not confusing people further, let's refer to either "heavy-duty vs light-duty" trucks, or alternately "full-size vs compact" pickups. Small and large don't really have well-defined meanings here. :)
       
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      • Guy Weathersby

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        I was referring to DOT HS 812 150 which defines a large truck as having a gross vehicle weight rating of over 10,000 pounds. I believe that this corrospnds medium-duty or higher truck.
         
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        • Red Sage

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          Honestly? When it comes to Tesla Motors, I am very protective. That's because I am extremely paranoid of the things that could go wrong with certain markets. I've said before, and will likely say again, to quote Mr. Miyagi, "Best block: No be there." That is, the best way to make sure you don't get hit is to not be where someone wants to hit you. Here are some links to Ford's Commercial Truck website for reference:

          http://www.ford.com/commercial-trucks/superduty-commercial/
          What Ford calls a 'SUPER DUTY' pickup truck corresponds to what Chevrolet and Dodge/RAM call a 'HEAVY DUTY' pickup truck. This is the market where I believe Tesla could have the most impact, by taking on these vehicles on their own turf. I believe that by 2020, and certainly by 2022, a Tesla pickup truck will be able to compete head-to-head with such high end vehicles that are used both for personal and commercial applications.

          http://www.ford.com/commercial-trucks/chassis-cab/
          I really hope that Tesla never, ever offers a 'chassis cab' option. There are those that insist it is a necessary part of the truck business. I believe it is best that Tesla build all their vehicles themselves, designed in-house, from the ground up.

          http://www.ford.com/commercial-trucks/f650-f750/
          I don't much like the idea of a Tesla 'cab & frame' setup either. But custom shops have gotten used to being able to do whatever they like for their on Clients. I do not believe Tesla should make such projects easy on anyone.

          http://www.ford.com/commercial-trucks/strippedchassis/
          I sincerely doubt Tesla will ever offer a 'stripped chassis' option. But people are bound to ask for them anyway. Problem is, those who do so will want to do incredibly stupid things that could backfire on Tesla.​

          For nearly 100 years people have been routinely modifying trucks to fit specific needs in business or recreational use. There are entire industries that have grown out of the quest to fulfill those needs. I don't mind Tesla supporting the third party accessory business. But when it comes to those that want to take the innards of a Tesla product, and use them to make an entirely new vehicle, I'd prefer that simply did not happen. Ever.

          So, design a truck that can accept a winch, or a cow catcher. No problem. A truck that can use a ball hitch, or weight distribution tow hitch, maybe even a gooseneck. Cool. Set up some hard points to accept a running board or light bar. Fine. All those sorts of things are perfectly OK.

          But if there is going to be a Tesla tool truck, or dump truck, or tow truck, or flatbed, or recreational vehicle, or camper -- anything of that sort -- should be wholly designed and built in-house. And then, only if there is an appropriate market for them. Because I want the entire vehicle to be built to the same standards from stem to stern, top to bottom, without variance. In that way you can ensure engineering excellence and the utmost in safety for occupants.
           
        • Red Sage

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          Thanks for the link!

          Federal regulations define a light-duty truck to be any motor vehicle having a gross vehicle weight rating (curb weight plus payload) of no more than 8,500 pounds (3,855.5 kg) which is "(1) Designed primarily for purposes of transportation of property or is a derivation of such a vehicle, or (2) Designed primarily for transportation of persons and has a capacity of more than 12 persons, or (3) Available with special features enabling off-street or off-highway operation and use."

          I point out here that Ford loves to use a 'best-in-class' blurb relative to its 'SUPER DUTY' F-Series trucks, which have a gross vehicle weight rating over 8,500 lbs. The teeny tiny writing reads "Class is Full-Size Pickups over 8,500 lbs. GVWR. Available 6.7L Power Stroke® Turbo Diesel.". So those particular configurations can be listed as 'commercial vehicles' instead of 'light trucks', even though there may not be a tremendous difference between an F-150 and an F-250. in particular, they are proud of listing this:

          The available B20-capable 6.7L Power Stroke Turbo Diesel V8 is the winner in diesel performance with its best-in-class* horsepower and torque ratings — 440 horsepower and 925 lb.-ft. of torque.

          I figure that could be taken down by a Tesla pickup fairly easily. A 170 kWh to 220 kWh battery pack would certainly weigh enough to get the GVWR up to 8,500 lbs or more. Dual motor all wheel drive could definitely allow for a horsepower rating over 420 lbs, and could exceed the 925 lb-ft torque as well. Unfortunately, there is no EPA rating for fuel economy on such 'commercial vehicles', but I figure it isn't too good. The F-150 with 5.0 L V8 manages 368 miles on a 23.0 gallon tank of gasoline. A 'SUPER DUTY' truck would likely have the 'Extended Range' 36.0 gallon capacity fuel tank. So, even if the fuel economy dropped from 16 MPG to around 12 MPG, you'd still have a 432 mile range. I figure a 170 kWh Tesla Pickup would have a range of 386-to-428 miles. And, a 220 kWh battery pack should be good for 499-to-554 miles.
           
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          • Michael Russo

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            LOL... knew this one would take a life of its own so created the dedicated thread...Enjoy!
            Will watch from the side with interest... NOT much to say on pick-up trucks from (most of) us Europeans! ;)
             
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            • Michael Russo

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              • Red Sage

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                Interesting article. A couple of points though... Tesla's need to 'double' the world's output of Lithium-ion batteries was based upon projections from late 2013. With the apparent success of the Model ☰ Unveil Part I in late March 2016, they have since increased the projected final output of their Gigafactory and revised their time schedule so that the original 'maximum' will be reached in/by 2018. The final Gigafactory will have three times its originally specified output by 2020, enough to supply 1,500,000 vehicles per year.

                Further, Lithium is a rather abundant element, available just about everywhere, and amounts to no more than 'the salt in the salad' within the chemical formulation of Lithium-ion battery cells at barely 2% by weight/volume. It is certainly convenient to have Lithium available at mines so close to the Gigafactory, but is not of vast importance.

                Also, I'm pretty sure that a Tesla designed autonomous semi truck will probably look a bit more like the MAN Concept Driverless Truck from a few years ago than a Freightliner.

                [​IMG]

                [​IMG]

                [​IMG]
                 
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                • Michael Russo

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                  For those of you English speakers, 'Changer de bord' in French translates to 'switching sides'... That is exactly what the BI writer of this article (Matthew DeBord :p, typically not really a resolute T≡SLA fanboy) seems to be doing here.... :D
                  If BI starts to report about the new Roadster, with undisguised excitement, you can tell the world's opinion is shifting as to how well things are going at T≡SLA!!
                  http://uk.businessinsider.com/tesla-launching-new-roadster-2017-4?r=US&IR=T
                   
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                  • Michael Russo

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                    The journey to the self-driven home electric T≡SLA Semi is well underway!

                     
                  • Watts4me

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                    Has Elon set a date for sept? I'm guessing at the end of the month
                     
                  • JWardell

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                    What about the pickup? Is anyone else bothered by the fact that there are no small to mid sized american pickup trucks anymore?
                    Sadly I think tesla will only go after the highest selling full size category. Or maybe invent something that expands!
                     
                  • Michael Russo

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                    There's no doubt in my mind, after having just driven 7,800 miles on :unitedstates: roads (I wouldn't think of writing 'American'... @Steven, special mention to you! ;)), that there is a yuuuge market for an electric pick-up... so very confident Elon and T≡SLA will be all over that segment in a few years (let's give them time to get out of Model 3 production hell first for a few months, ok? ;))

                    As European, I do concur with you yet there is a strikingly high amount of ginormous share of very big trucks, much less of the small/median size, on the other side of the water (yep, am back home now...). Interestingly, we do see more and more of the latter in Europe, although still in infinitesimal proportions relative to the US.

                    Yet, be sure, by the magic year of 2020, there should be something of a BET (a.k.a. 'battery electrical truck') in sight! :rainbow::rainbow::rainbow:
                     
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                    • Michael Russo

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                      Creative minds at work... before the real thing comes out... one can dream ... ;)

                       
                    • Rick59

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                      Michael, slap some butt-ugly WCs on that sports car and .... sorry, my meds wore off.
                       
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                      • Brokedoc

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                        • JWardell

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                          Maybe we think alike, but we don't have the same millions of dollars!

                          I honestly it will take years longer for the pick-truck-loving folks to accept electric transportation, so the mid-size truck would be smarter, but then again if he just repackages the semi into one of those giant Hummer-sized Internationals, go right ahead.
                           

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