Elon Musk might want to pull up his socks and speed up his semi-truck if he doesn’t want to be overtaken, yet again. A start-up trucking company is already threatening to land their first electric heavy-duty semi before 2019. 2019 is the year scheduled for Tesla’s semi-truck mass production.
The fact that big names in the transportation industry are making reservations of the Tesla’s semi-trucks might be attracting unnecessary attention from other trucking companies. Someone would wonder, does Thor, a small Los Angeles Start-up Company have the muscles to wrestle with veterans like Tesla?
If I were to name the most prominent electric car manufacturers in the world so far, Tesla would be arguably top of the list.
ET-One has a 300-mile range between recharges and can haul up to 80,000lb. The Thor truck, compared to Tesla semis, does not have the attractive design, but it promises to perform almost the same as Tesla’s.
The ET-one electric truck is an invention of Thor’s co-founders, Gio Sordoni and Dakota Semler. Despite the confidence and determination by the duo to deliver their vehicle before Tesla’s, the company is looking for partners to fund the project.
So far the company has sourced funds from Dakota Semler’s other investments to produce the prototype.
The Thor truck can do up to 70mph. Due to the nature of its battery, (takes 90 minutes to recharge if drawn to zero), ET-One is designed for short distance transportation, just like Tesla semis.
The two trucks have 300-mile ranges. However, as Tesla has a 500-mile range truck, Thor is also planning to create such as well. Both 300-mile range trucks can haul up to 80,000lb, with a base price of $150,000.
Some of the features present in Tesla semis, which could be missing from the ET-One, is the active driver assistance features, autonomous emergency brakes, “lane keep” assistance and head-on collision warning, as well as the pilot seat positioning.
Auto manufacturing is a risky undertaking that might leave your pockets dry and empty. If you compare challenges faced by Thor and Tesla, the bridge is too broad.
Tesla’s one major challenge is that they’ve never manufactured commercial trucks before, while Thor’s problem is that they’ve never put anything on the road.
As many auto manufacturers work hard towards introducing the zero emissive vehicles’ powering system, Thor and Tesla are not the only ones. Daimler’s delivery canters are already selling, Toyota is testing their hydrogen fuel-cell semis in California, Cummins introduced an electric truck prototype earlier this year, and Nikola Motors is planning to use fuel cells to power their truck.
Thor says that their truck’s maintenance cost will be 60% cheaper compared to ordinary diesel trucks, and 70% less expensive in fueling cost.
If Thor can leave up to the hype, and actually overtake Tesla in their scheduled 2019 delivery, the Semler and Sordoni will be among the luckiest of many startups that have failed to withstand the hurdles.
There’s not much information about this truck, not yet, but one thing is for sure, it’s not as sleek as the Tesla semis.
Watch this space for more information; we’ll be updating you as soon as we get more.