Do Tesla Performance Estimates Make Sense

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Evannex has been pondering about Tesla’s predictions for their Semi and Roadster vehicles under development. They have a stake in their success, as they are Tesla aftermarket accessory suppliers. However they limit their products to center consoles, floor mats, lighting/sound upgrades, sunshades, and wheels. Thus, they are peering through the window like the rest of us when they wonder, do Tesla performance predictions assume a future battery design?

Bloomberg Wonders About Tesla Performance Numbers Too

Bloomberg thinks the Semi semi-trailer’s performance spec requires between 600 and 1,000 kilowatt-hour battery density. This would make its battery six to ten times larger than the Model S power pack. Do Tesla performance promises make sense? We also started wondering when we realized an 800-kilowatt hour battery could cost more than $100,000 and weigh over 10,000 pounds. That would leave just $50,000 for the truck itself, which seems ridiculous. But then, who could have imagined the Tesla Ludicrous Model S sprinting to 60 mph in 1.9 seconds a few years ago either?

A Heads Up From Battery Expert Venkat Viswanathan

Venkat is a mechanical engineering assistant professor at Carnegie Mellon. He thinks the answer lies in managing down vehicle weight, increasing charging speed, and becoming more innovative with aerodynamics, energy density, and tires. Michael Kramer, a fund manager with Mott Capital Management explains, “Once the Model S is equipped with the 200 kWh battery pack in the new Roadster – which I can’t imagine is too far down the road – the range issue for the Tesla is officially dead.”

This confirms an earlier comment by Elon Musk himself, to the effect that batteries will progressively become denser without expanding in size. So do Tesla performance numbers add up then? At present, they are still defying known physics and battery economics. However, we could have said the same for the idea of commercially-viable electric cars a decade ago.


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Preview Image: Tesla Semi Prototype

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I tripped over a shrinking bank balance and fell into the writing gig unintentionally. This was after I escaped the corporate world and searched in vain for ways to become rich on the internet by doing nothing. Despite the fact that writing is no recipe for wealth, I rather enjoy it. I will not deny I am obsessed with it when I have the time. My base is Umtentweni in South Africa on the Kwazulu-Natal South Coast. I work from home where I ponder on the future of the planet, and what lies beyond in the great hereafter. Sometimes I step out of my computer into the silent riverine forests, and empty golden beaches for which the area is renowned.

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