Last month, Tesla unveiled their concept for the the first fully electric semi-truck, and on December 12, GSF successfully secured an order for the semis, which will become available in 2019. The zero-emission trucks strategically support GSF’s 2020 sustainability goals, as well as automation, technology and innovation aspirations. Tesla has received pre-orders from such major companies as Walmart, J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc, Sysco Corp., UPS, and PepsiCo, among many others.
“GSF wants to be on the leading edge of new technology and we’re excited to be among some of the first companies to request an electric tractor from Tesla,” said Bill Pocilujko, Corporate Central Procurement Manager, GSF/Centralized Leasing Company. “We know it will be some time before we receive this unit, but this will also allow us time to learn more about the requirements and infrastructure required for this technology. I have seen many changes in my 45 years’ involvement in the trucking industry, but this has to be the most futuristic change. I’m excited to have the opportunity to be part of this advancement.”
Telsa’s website touts some of the features of the semi truck, including:
- Four independent motors provide maximum power and acceleration and require the lowest energy cost per mile.
- The quickest acceleration—from 0-60 mph in 20 seconds, fully loaded. Instant traction control with four independent motors. Quickest up the grades.
- Enhanced Autopilot helps avoid collisions, a centered driver position provides maximum visibility and control, and a low center of gravity offers rollover protection.
- Electric energy costs are half those of diesel. With fewer systems to maintain, the Tesla Semi provides $200,000+ in fuel savings and a two-year payback period.
“From concept to execution, our team at GSF pounced on the opportunity to commit to our future and to our alternative fuel strategy,” said Anna Lisa Lukes, Director, Corporate Social Responsibility and Executive Director, GSF Foundation. “Our corporate CSR and procurement teams talked to Tesla on December 12, and worked with our corporate finance and legal teams to make it happen in less than 48 hours. Our sustainability, procurement and logistics leaders are aligned in our belief that trucking will include an electrified future, and it’s thrilling to see that Tesla’s competitive pricing and leadership in technology and sustainable energy will help make that future a reality for GSF.”
This past September, GSF joined the Business for Social Responsibility’s (BSR) “Sustainable Fuel Buyers’ Principles” as a key signatory. The Principles tackle the proliferation of options by bringing together fleets and shippers of all sizes to set a common direction for sustainable fuel. By signing these Principles, companies send a strong joint message to the industry about the demand, the sustainability requirements, and the partnerships across the value chain that will be needed to scale investment in low-carbon fuels.
The locations of where the trucks will be tested are yet to be determined and GSF is talking to others in the industry to see what the charging station infrastructure is developing.