Nikola Motor Company is Suing Tesla over Alleged Patent Infringement
Nikola Motor Company, a company that unveiled a hydrogen truck concept in 2016, has filed a lawsuit against Tesla in Arizona alleging that Elon Musk’s firm infringes on its patents with the all-electric Semi truck. The lawsuit claims Tesla willfully copied Nikola’s patents in creating its electric truck. The Utah-based company is seeking $2 billion in damages.
Tesla Seems to Think that Trucks are Supercars, and It’s Wrong!
After years of rumors and speculation that Tesla might build a pickup truck or a Semi, the electric car manufacturer finally unveiled the latter in a press conference that also revealed the second-generation Roadster. And just as it happened in the past with the Model S, Model X, and Model 3, Elon Musk made some spectacular claims about the performances of both vehicles. Actually, I’d dare say he went farther than usual by calling the next Roadster the "quickest production car ever made. Period." He also described the semi truck as a vehicle that "accelerates like nothing else." Granted, both claims can become reality, but maybe Musk is talking a bit too much a bit too soon. And it seems to me that he’s considering the semi a sports car rather than truck that’s supposed to haul stuff the efficient way.
Sure, the fact that this truck won’t use expensive diesel to move about enables Tesla to think about other factors, including performance, but I still don’t get why a truck must accelerate like "nothing else." Should it be about a truck that brakes like nothing else or an electric hauler that allows you to cover at least the same distance as a diesel truck on a tank of fuel? Musk also seems to be concerned about that fact that truckers must wait for 15 minutes while the tank gets filled at the gas station. Seriously now, have you heard of a trucker who fell asleep at the pump while his tank was gulping diesel? Trucks are high maintenance; I’m pretty sure a semi driver has plenty of chores to do at the gas stations.
More importantly, Musk ignored a few important facts about trucks in his speech.
Continue reading to find out what.
2019 Tesla Semi
Elon Musk and Tesla have defied the odds by finally debuting the automaker’s first stab at the commercial trucking industry. It’s called simply the Tesla Semi and it finally broke cover at a media event on November 16, 2017, after years of teasing. Debuting alongside the hot 2020 Tesla Roadster, the Semi is designed to reinvent the way trucking is done. Tesla says its all-electric drivetrain will give more than 500 miles of range on a single charge while towing 80,000 pounds, be far less difficult to maintain, and outperform convention semi trucks in both performance and safety – all at a lower operating cost. That’s a tall order. Oh, and it’ll hit 60 mph in just 5.0 seconds when unloaded.
Along with the Semi, Tesla will be releasing a new charging system. It’s called the Megacharger and it’s a high-speed DC charging station capable of adding roughly 400 miles of range in only 30 minutes. Tesla says the Megachargers can be installed by fleet operators anywhere along their routes and will be common at truck stops in heavily trafficked areas.
Continue reading for more information.
Elon Musk Hints at Tesla Truck
Tesla Motors’ well-known CEO, Elon Musk, was recently interviewed at the StartmeupHK Venture Forum in Hong Kong. On the list of topics was Tesla and its current lineup of vehicles, including the new Model X. Probing for information, the on-stage interviewer asked Musk about Tesla offering a pickup truck. The point-blank question was met with positive remarks.
“Yeah, I think it’s quiet likely we’ll do a truck in the future,” Musk replied. When asked for more details, Musk laughingly responded with, “No, [but] I think it’s sort of a logical thing for us to do in the future.” (Musk’s comments start at the 24:55 minute mark in the video.)
Huh, a Tesla truck; that’s an interesting thought. The fledgling automaker will have some serious issues to overcome should it move forward with the idea. First, trucks are generally more abused – or at least saddled with harder work – more so than sedans or crossover SUVs. They’re designed to tow, haul, and tackle moderately rough terrain. Then there’s the issue of aerodynamics. Trucks inherently behave like a brick in a wind tunnel, with their cargo beds and flat fronts pushing through the air.
Perhaps Tesla will rethink the idea of what a truck is. Perhaps they will introduce a sort of El Camino or Ridgeline-like vehicle based on the Model X, designed only to haul the occasional wet dog, Ikea box, or smelly gym bag. Labeling it a truck would likely spur sales thanks to the hot pickup and SUV market these days.
However, there are major concerns about such a vehicle. Keep reading for more.
Continue reading for more information
The Tesla Model X isn’t in production yet, nor has a production model even been revealed, but the all-electric SUV continues to be the focal point of many discussions. One of the latest comes from seekingalpha, a research website for investors (that requires an email subscription), in which a recent article suggests that Audi’s launch of the 2016 Q7 e-tron quattro plug-In hybrid could put Tesla’s third production vehicle in a hole.
This argument is centered on the waiting list where an estimated 23,000 potential buyers have laid down their refundable $5,000 deposits. The author seems to think that if the Q7 and its combination of a diesel engine and a plug-in hybrid powertrain arrive before the Model X, people will opt for the seven-passenger hybrid over the seven-passenger electric vehicle. More so, he believes that the price difference between the two vehicles, which he estimates to be around $35,000, people will buy the Q7 PHEV now as well as the proposed $35,000 Tesla Model III that is scheduled to debut in 2017.
Only time will tell if this theory plays out, but our best guess is this will not be the case. Sure, there might be a handful of customers who put their name on the list just looking for an efficient, three-row SUV, but at the same time, most of these people are probably looking for a fully electric vehicle rather than just the 35 miles of electric range the Q7 diesel PHEV is expected to deliver. On top of that, it would seem that Tesla buyers are willing to stay on their “invisible leash” (aka Tesla’s Supercharger) in order to enjoy zero-emission driving.
Regardless of which scenario plays out for the Tesla Model X, this is definitely an exciting time for SUV drivers where a variety of advanced plug-in utility vehicles are preparing to hit the market.
Click past the jump to read more about Audi’s future Q7 Plug-in Hybrid.
So, we have been very patient with what may be one of the best crossover SUVs ever built: the Tesla Model X.
We were expecting to see the Model X released in late-2013 for the 2014 model year, but things are changing, as they usually do. According to a report by Los Angeles Times, the Model X’s production has been pushed to late-2014 with deliveries happening in 2015.
The reasoning for the delay is that Tesla has been so focused on improving the Model S that it chose to push the Model X back, as opposed to rushing through it. We’ll take that excuse at its face value, but that seems almost like a cop-out, as we haven’t seen any changes to the Model S since it was released, sans a significant price hike. Maybe there is a change to the Model S around the corner that we are not yet aware of.
So, those of you that are excited to get your hands on this crossover SUV that hits 60 mph in under 5 seconds while looking pretty sexy, you’re just going to have to wait a little longer.
We’ll keep you updated.
Two years ago, we were announcing that Toyota and Tesla Motors had entered an agreement that would net Tesla $60 million to design and manufacture an all-electric powertrain for the RAV4 SUV. Finally, after all of this time we have a debut date set. Unfortunately, it isn’t a showroom debut, but rather a showing of the final product.
Toyota has just has unveiled this new Tesla and Toyota collaboration to the U.S. at the International Electric Vehicle Symposium in LA on the May 7th at noon. The new RAV4 EV is powered by a 154 HP electric powertrain and has a driving range rating of approximately 100 miles and charging time of approximately six hours on a 240V/40A charger. It comes with two driving modes: Sport and Normal. In Sport version the car will sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 7.0 seconds and will go up to 100 mph, while in Normal mode it will sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 8.6 seconds with a maximum speed of 85 mph.
Compared to the standard RAV4, the new EV version will get a re-styled the front bumper, upper and lower grill, side mirrors, rear spoiler, and under body design to maximize air flow around the vehicle. The model will be offered in three exterior colors: Blizzard White Pearl, Shoreline Blue Pearl and Classic Silver Metallic combined with a unique "Neutron" fabric for the interior.
UPDATE 05/08/2012: The new Toyota RAV4 EV will go on sale in late Summer 2012 through select dealers at a starting price of $49,800.