Schneider, Anheuser-Busch, Pepsi get in line for electric trucks

Updated Dec 16, 2017

America’s largest brewer and one of the country’s largest trucking companies are the latest customers to get in line for a new all-electric tractor.

Anheuser-Busch last week placed an order for 40 of the Telsa Semi trucks that were introduced less than a month ago.  The 40 semi-trucks, one of Tesla’s largest reported pre-orders, will be fully electric-powered and equipped with autonomous driving capabilities.

PepsiCo confirmed today that it has reserved 100 of Tesla’s new electric trucks, the largest-known single order for the electric big rig to-date.

On Monday, Schneider announced it has committed to purchase Tesla Semi trucks, but did not say how many or which version. A spokesperson for the company said that while Schneider is not divulging a specific number at this time, they did call it “a meaningful amount.”

A 300-mile variant of the Tesla Semi costs $150,000; the 500-mile model, $180,000; and a Founders Series will run $200,000, according to Tesla’s website and each requires a $20,000 deposit.

“This new technology resets the bar for sustainability and safety,” said Mark Rourke, executive vice president and COO at Wisconsin-based Schneider, in a statement. “We are excited about the potential the electric Semi truck offers for delivering a smaller carbon footprint, dramatically lowering lifecycle operating costs and enhancing the driver experience. The technology will provide a natural extension to our next generation Quest platform.”

Anheuser-Busch says integrating the Tesla semi-trucks into the brewer’s distribution network will help achieve its commitment to reduce its operational carbon footprint by 30 percent by 2025 – the equivalent of removing nearly 500,000 cars from the road globally each year.

In addition to its partnership with Tesla, Anheuser-Busch is also working with Nikola Motor Company to develop and implement hydrogen-powered engines within its network, and with Otto and Uber Freight to test autonomous driving technology. The world’s largest brewer has also partnered with Convoy to access on-demand trucking capacity.

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In 2016, an Otto truck carrying 51,744 cans of Budweiser completed an autonomous truckload shipment from Anheuser-Busch’s Ft. Collins, Colorado brewery to a distributorship in Colorado Springs, a distance of 132 miles – the first ever commercial beer delivery using autonomous driving technology.