Tesla Wants To Test Autonomous Semi-Trucks Soon

Elon Musk

Report: Tesla developing self-driving electric truck

Citing emails between Tesla and the Nevada DMV, Reuters claimed that the two sides discussed road tests of self-driving capabilities of the Tesla e-trucks.

Platooning is basically a driving formation where vehicles, in this case large trucks, follow each other very closely. Reports indicate that the meeting, at least in part, dealt with Tesla wanting to test self-driving trucks on the state's roadways.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has been teasing an electric semi truck for a while now, ahead of an official unveiling this fall.

Musk confirmed of Tesla working on heavy-duty electric trucks in one of his tweets in June. The automaker will need to get a self-driving vehicle testing license in the state, but hasn't done so yet according to a Nevada spokesperson.

Since October, Tesla has been adding fully autonomous functions to all Model S and Model X units being built, and announced that the new technology would later be applied to the Model 3.

As you know, Tesla is developing an unmanned electric trucks. Besides producing a video showing an Otto truck driving down a road without any safety personnel in the front seat, the company also executed the drive without the appropriate autonomous testing permit.

Tesla's truck program is being led by VP of Trucks and Programs Jerome Guillen who has a long history in the long-haul trucking industry, having previously worked at Diamler and was General Manager of New Product Development at Freightliner Trucks.

Tesla may be able to tap into and fill a void left by ride-hailing giant Uber. Ars has reached out to Tesla for comment and we'll update if we receive a response. Some of these tech firms are working on "platooning" technology which allow drivers to rest, while the automobile itself and trucks behind will follow the leader truck.

The document obtained by Reuters indicated that Tesla is planning to test trucks without anyone in the cab, which would require special government permission.

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