Tesla Semi Visits Canada for Possible Winter Testing Before Launch

by Claribelle Deveza February 12, 2020

tesla-semi-canada

The Tesla Semi visited Canada recently for some possible winter testing before the all-electric Class 8 truck’s initial launch later this year. There were two Tesla Semi sightings this past week. The Tesla Semi or Semis spotted seemed new or at least different from the ones Elon Musk revealed during the company’s 2017 unveiling event and the ones usually seen on the road in the United States.

On February 9, Jason Lennox posted a picture on Instagram of a Tesla Semi that looked quite different from the two prototypes that have been deployed in the US so far. The all-electric Class 8 truck was two-tone in color. It had a matte black roof and silver body, combining the two colors of the Semis unveiled during Tesla’s 2017 unveiling event. Lennox shared that the Semi was spotted near the US-Canadian border in Huntingdon, which could be the one in Sumas, Washington.

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Saw this at the border today. #tesla

A post shared by Jason Lennox (@jasonlennox8157) on

Two days later, on February 11, InfoNewsKelowna spotted a Tesla Semi near Ashcroft, Canada. The Semi in question looked similar to the one Lennox spotted back in Huntingdon, but it is unclear whether it was the same Semi in his Instagram picture. Interestingly, the trucks also seemed freshly detailed, with the long-hauler's windshield being fitted with what seemed to be a protective layer. 

A two-toned Semi hasn’t been sighted for quite some time. Back in 2017, before Tesla even unveiled its Class 8 truck, a two-toned Semi was spotted in the wild on top of a trailer. A picture of the Semi was posted on Reddit. Interestingly enough, that version of the truck was not present during the unveiling event, and most people have probably forgotten about the first actual sighting of the Semi.

Repost of Tesla Testing Semi Picture (user deleted his picture pls delete if this is wrong @mods) from r/teslamotors

The recent Tesla Semi sightings hint at two possibilities. First, Tesla has started conducting cold-weather tests for the Semi in Canada. This is in line with Tesla's previous practices with its other vehicles like the Model 3, which was also tested extensively in the Canadian cold.

Second, the two-toned Class 8 truck spotted in Canada might also be a prototype of Tesla’s 500-mile Semi. This would be quite interesting since the two Semi prototypes conducting real-world tests in the US are reportedly 300-mile versions. Overall, the first possibility seems highly probable since Tesla has a history of testing its vehicle's winter capabilities in Canada.

Just last month, the Tesla Model Y was seen in Canada for winter testing. Tesla also uses a facility in Minnesota for winter testing in the United States and conducts winter tests in Alaska as well.

As for the possibility of a 500-mile Semi sighting, there may be a sliver of a chance. Tesla’s usual strategy with freshly-released vehicles is to release the top-tier models first because their higher revenue yield can go towards the production costs for the vehicle's base and mid-tier variants. This certainly seems to be the case for the Cybertruck.

The Semi will be Tesla’s first entry in the trucking market, which is currently dominated by Daimler’s Freightliner brand. Leaders in the trucking market are taking the shift to new energy vehicles much more seriously than legacy automakers producing passenger vehicles. The ultimate rival for Tesla in the trucking market will be Freightliner, which unveiled its e-trucks in 2018, dubbed the eCascadia and eM2.

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Featured Image Credit: jasonlennox8157/Instagram




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