Tesla pickup truck talk starting to make more and more sense
When we first heard Elon Musk mention an electric Tesla pickup truck this we thought it was just Elon poking fun at the old-iron pickup makers. Some of which get as low as 12 GPM around town. Elon Musk spoke again this week about an electric pickup truck. That made us take a deeper look at why a pickup truck from Tesla might make sense and we now think a Tesla pickup could be wildly successful.
Tesla Electric Truck Market Size
The single most sold nameplate in the US auto industry is the Ford F-150- by a huge margin. Other trucks from Chevy and Ram also sell in numbers that make even the best-selling fuel sippers’ sales look small. If Tesla really wants to change the automotive world as we know it, this is the real target. If Tesla took just 5% of the market share in this segment it could surpass the 2013 Model S sales easily.
Trucks are already pricey too. That is a big advantage for Tesla. It would be a lot easier to sell a $60,000 electric luxury truck to an ICE truck business owner that paid $50,000 for his last pickup than to sell a commuter a $35,000 GEN III sedan who paid $20,000 for his last Prius.
Tesla Electric Truck Environmental Impact
Mid-size family cars like the Honda Accord Hybrid already get 50 MPG and they are already affordable. A Gen III Tesla car displacing them is fine, but each Tesla electric pickup would have a four or five times larger impact on the environment. There also would appear to be a market segment of environmental buyers who want or need the utility of a truck bed and 4WD.
For example, every single Solar City installer, the US Department of the Interior, The EPA, and every other US governmental agency that buys a lot of pick-ups and only buys from “domestic” brands. Can you even imagine the bad press that the president would have to endure if a viable US-made electric pickup was available and the government chose to use gas powered vehicles at the EPA and National Park Service?
Tesla Electric Truck Design
Trucks have a unique location where a large battery pack can be placed that will not impact passenger or cargo area at all. Just behind the cab and in front of the truck bed is the perfect spot. A Tesla battery pack folded in half and then mounted vertically (up and down) would fit perfectly in this area. This would be much better than horizontally under the vehicle as in the Model S. It would be out of the way of rocks and debris that are more likely to be an issue for a work truck. A Tesla truck using a similar electric motor to that now in the Model S would also have plenty of torque, which is the key metric to truck buyers. Power and twist would not even be a challenge.