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Tesla Semi

Discussion in 'TSLA Investor Discussions' started by jhm, Jul 25, 2016.

  1. EVSteve

    EVSteve 110% Solar Powered

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    Has anyone considered the possibility that the entire philosophy behind the semi truck trailer method of shipping may be completely redesigned once autonomy takes hold? Isn't one of the reasons for having a truck capable of hauling such large quantities in one go is due to the cost and limited availability of drivers? If the vehicle is fully autonomous then having fleets of smaller vehicles would not necessarily carry a higher cost. If a commodity can be moved without huge warehouse's in between then shipment duration should decrease along with all the extra costs associated with storage, security, personnel etc.
     
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  2. mongo

    mongo Well-Known Member

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    The large trailer approach works well with the spoke to hub to spoke system of distribution.

    Manufactures send full trailers of goods to the major client's local distribution centers. At each company's distribution center, products are combined from all vendors into shipments to one or a few stores per trailer.
    Versus:
    Each supplier has to ship a small quantity to each geographically separated store. Each time a store runs low on a good it would take a dedicated truck to restock vs just adding it to the scheduled warehouse order.

    With overseas imports in shipping containers the hub system is even more important.

    Local brands and large beverage companies do run their own distribution fleets directly to stores. In those cases, the driver may also handle stocking (more so on the small end of things)
     
  3. neroden

    neroden Model S Owner and Frustrated Tesla Fan

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    The promotional model of charging works. Destination charging, origin charging, and charging at restaurants which want you to eat lunch there. It's going to be sufficient to build out the network of chargers.
     
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  4. AZ Desert Driver

    AZ Desert Driver Rare combination

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    So there are cases where variety of parts need to be consolidated into a warehouse for assembly and repackaging. But there are also cases where the end-user is small time, and the shipper is small time, so the warehouse model is counterproductive. I think EVSteve has a good point. A more distributed distribution system can flourish with autonomy. But of course not in every case. The warehouse design evolved over centuries of use and has value as-is. But there is a future that was not included in this evolution and hence an opportunity just envisioned.
     
  5. mongo

    mongo Well-Known Member

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    Yah, that is the local brand distribution I mentioned (thinking of things like bread which do that already). If the end user is small and the manufacturer is small, and they aren't co-located, then they use established shipping companies, back to hub and spoke.

    Amazon provides the infrastructure for this now with third party brands selling via Amazon to individual end customers.

    Automated delivery could boost other small businesses in their local markets in the perishables category, if you can add a system for the last 10 feet to the customer reliably (Domino's automate pizza delivery).

    However, local to local business is likely not the type to currently be using semis now, which was the original item EVSteve proposed for disruption.
     
  6. jhm

    jhm Well-Known Member

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    Yesterday, I charged at a Supercharger next to a Starbucks. There were about 5 ICE car idling in the drive-thru line for Starbucks. I recognized in that moment that the drive-thru line held almost no value for me, while the Supercharger 50 meters away was nearly the only reason I would buy product at this particular Starbucks. It got me wondering if drive-thru lines may fade away as EVs penetrate the market. Drive-in service faded away about 40 years ago, but perhaps it could make a comeback. Drive-in service would cater to EV drivers as they charge. And for those who use drive-thru as a convenience to avoid having to get out of their cars, drive-in service may work just as well. Mobile communication devices can now streamline at car service. Park, order in your car with smart phone or car app, pay electronically, and your food and beverage is delivered at your car door. A disadvantage for drive-thru is having to wait in line first to place order and second for all previous orders to be filled. So with app based ordering from your car, you avoid having to wait for others to place orders. If your, order is particularly quick to fill (like a simple cup of coffee), it can jump ahead of other orders that take longer to fill (like a barista drink).

    It will be fascinating to see how this evolves.
     
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  7. NeverFollow

    NeverFollow Active Member

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    Some McDonald let you order in advance. There are then dedicated parking spots where you can get your order delivered directly to you.
     
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  8. jhm

    jhm Well-Known Member

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    Cool. As a vegetarian, I rarely go to McDonald's. Good to know they are innovating around this. Seems like once they have chargers in their lots it would be natural to extend this service to them.
     
  9. Electroman

    Electroman Well-Known Member

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    You mean like Sonic? (except for an App they have ordering kisok).
     
  10. STARR X

    STARR X Member

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    Sonic is a great choice as they have the canopies for solar panels too. Commercials aren't too bad either although I have never eaten at a Sonic.
     
  11. mongo

    mongo Well-Known Member

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    Elon agrees:
    Elon Musk on Twitter
     
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  12. NeverFollow

    NeverFollow Active Member

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    Kind of similar situation. I barely go to a McDonald to get some coffee and to use the restroom.
    The coffee is in fact very good and quite inexpensive, like a buck, and also you can find a seat if you want.

    I never been able to find a seat at a Starbucks or many other coffee shops.
    In general all the tables, with four seats, are occupied by one single customer with a laptop staying there for hours..
    I really don't understand the business case of it.
    Peet's Coffee or Blue Bottle Coffee by opposition don't almost provide any tables or chairs for customers.
     
  13. AZ Desert Driver

    AZ Desert Driver Rare combination

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    Interesting tangent...this thread started as being about the Semi sized loads - but the discussions are now on micro delivery. The Semi is intended to disrupt the long haul market and save the environment. But now there is a case for small disruptions- Sonic like deliveries during supercharging.

    I bet this was not considered during the gestation of the Semi - an unintended consequence. A good one, I think. Not clear how durable the micro distribution system is. Fickle customers dependent on small businesses makes micro delivery a risky business model...but that where entrepreneurs thrive!!
     
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  14. jhm

    jhm Well-Known Member

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    Truckers have to eat too...unless they are AI.
     
  15. ggr

    ggr Roadster R80 537, SigS P85 29, M3P 80k

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  16. Mo City

    Mo City Member

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  17. dc_h

    dc_h Active Member

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  18. EinSV

    EinSV Active Member

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    #2019 EinSV, Mar 12, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2019
    For anyone ready to pull the trigger on their new Semi reservation, there is now a handy webpage.

    They state a 2-year payback period and $200,000 in fuel savings, so the Semi basically pays for itself.:)

    Tesla Semi

    Lowest Cost of Ownership
    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.
     
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  19. scaesare

    scaesare Well-Known Member

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    Nice!

    (To "pull the plug" on something typically means to discontinue it.

    To "pull the trigger" means to implement something.


    Is that what you meant?)
     
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