Tesla begins delivering first Semi trucks
The big picture: The first shipment of the Tesla Semi, which was unveiled five years ago, was delivered to PepsiCo's Modesto, California, factory Wednesday, Tesla Semi program manager Dan Priestley said during a livestreamed event at the electric vehicle company's Nevada plant.
- "We delivered the truck, they took it over and they brought back a load of snacks for everybody here to enjoy tonight," Priestley added.
Zoom in: "We're incredibly excited tonight to actually deliver our first production Tesla semi trucks," Musk said at the event.
- The Tesla CEO thanked PepsiCo for being "a great partner" as Priestley symbolically handed over keys to executives Kirk Tanner and Steven Williams, who high-fived upon receiving them.
- "It's been a long journey, long five years, but this is gonna really revolutionize the roads and I think make the world a better place in a meaningful way," Musk added.
By the numbers: The Semi had a 500-mile driving range in a test, according to Tesla.
- "It's not like 500 miles with no load, with special aero, and special everything. It's fully loaded," Musk said at the event as an image of a Semi displayed on the screen behind him with a caption stating it completed the test with 4% battery left.
Yes, but: Oliver Dixon, senior analyst at consultancy Guidehouse, was among those casting doubt on the vehicle's capabilities after Musk didn't take questions following the end of the presentation.
- "Not very impressive — moving a cargo of chips (average weight per pack 52 grams) cannot in any way be said to be definitive proof of concept," Dixon said, per Reuters.
Flashback: Musk claimed when he first unveiled a Tesla Semi prototype five years ago that it would begin production in 2019.
Between the lines: The vehicle is coming three years late, but pandemic disruptions and supply chain issues might be partially to blame, Axios' Nathan Bomey notes.
Of note: Just a few days before Thursday's event, French automaker Renault completed deliveries for Coca-Cola with a fleet of electric trucks — jumping ahead of Tesla's own agreement with Pepsi, per Axios' Alan Neuhauser.
Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.