Soft drink giant, PepsiCo, has triggered a debate between truck industry observers about exactly when Tesla’s much vaunted battery electric prime mover will actually make its debut, with the company’s CEO declaring the new trucks would be delivered this year after Tesla said they had been delayed ‘till late 2022.
Pepsi said that it is expecting its first Tesla Electric trucks sometime in the next two months, despite statements by Tesla recently saying deliveries of the electric prime movers would not be until late next year.
Pepsi CEO Ramon Laguarta made the statement about the imminent arrival of the much delayed electric trucks last week, indicating the company, which is one of the biggest buyers of the Tesla Semi trucks, either didn’t get the message or knows something we don’t.
While Tesla has been making progress toward bringing the electric truck to low-volume production, CEO Elon Musk confirmed that customer deliveries had been pushed back to next year due to limited battery supply.
PepsiCo, boss Laguarta told US network CNBC, that the company is expecting Tesla Semi deliveries in Q4 this year, which is sometime in the next seven weeks
“We are already starting to buy electric trucks from Tesla, we don’t want to promote anybody, but that’s the brand we are using so far, and we are getting our first deliveries this Q4,” said Laguarta.
After the launch of Tesla Semi in 2017, Pepsi ordered 100 Tesla Semis for its fleet, one of the largest orders so far for the Tesla truck.
Pepsi planned to use 15 of the trucks for a project to turn its Frito-Lay plant in the California town of Modesto into a zero-emission facility.
As we previously reported, Tesla has a facility next to its Gigafactory car plant in Nevada designated for low-volume Tesla Semi production.
Tesla completed its drive axle production line in the middle of this year during the Northern Summer, and announced it was in the process of debugging its low-volume general assembly line.
While it recently said that the first Tesla Semi deliveries to customers would be delayed when more battery cell supply would be available, it is expected to have more pre-production units built at the Nevada facility for testing and its internal logistics needs, which may be where Pepsi’s first trucks will be coming from.