Anheuser-Busch orders 800 hydrogen-electric semi trucks from Tesla competitor Nikola

May 4, 2018 by  
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Tesla’s made headlines with its electric Semi truck — but Anheuser-Busch is betting big on their competitor, the Nikola Motor Company . The beer company placed an order for as many as 800 hydrogen-electric semi trucks just days after Nikola sued Tesla for patent infringement. Nikola says their zero emissions trucks boast a 500- to 1,200-mile range – plenty to haul Anheuser-Busch’s beer around the country. Anheuser-Busch’s goal is to convert its dedicated long-haul fleet over to renewably-powered vehicles by 2025. 800 hydrogen-electric semi trucks could help them reach that goal. Nikola said their trucks could be integrated into the brewing company’s fleet in 2020. Features of the truck include the ability to refuel in around 20 minutes, and a surround viewing system for improved safety. Nikola could charge around $400,000 on average for their trucks, which are as yet in the prototype phase, according to Reuters . Related: Self-driving semi-truck makes the first ever autonomous beer run The trucks could help the beer company attain sustainability goals; Nikola said, “Once fully implemented, the carbon reductions gained from these 800 trucks will reduce the brewer’s carbon emissions from logistics by more than 18 percent — equivalent to taking more than 13,000 passenger vehicles off the road annually.” Nikola says on their website they plan to create the world’s largest hydrogen network, and CEO Trevor Milton said they’re excited to partner with Anheuser-Busch to bring this network to the United States. He said in the statement, “By 2028, we anticipate having over 700 hydrogen stations across the USA and Canada. With nearly nine billion dollars in pre-order reservations, we are building to order, not speculation, and are very excited for what’s to come.” Reuters described that last statement as a not-so-veiled jab at Tesla — people have questioned the Tesla Semi’s cost, range, and payload. The expected base prices for Tesla’s Semi are $150,000 for a 300-mile-range truck or $180,000 for a 500-mile-range truck. Anheuser-Busch did place 40 reservations for the Tesla Semi. Although Nikola and Tesla are both named after inventor Nikola Tesla, the companies aren’t exactly on good terms — Nikola recently sued Tesla over design patent infringements. Elon Musk referred to the allegation as a “laughable lawsuit.” + Nikola Motor Company Via Reuters and Mashable Images via Nikola Motor Company

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Anheuser-Busch orders 800 hydrogen-electric semi trucks from Tesla competitor Nikola

Volvo SuperTruck improves big rig fuel efficiency by a whopping 70%

September 20, 2016 by  
Filed under Eco, Green, Recycle

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The race toward eco-friendly transportation has mostly involved innovating more and more compact commuter cars, but big trucks need to get green as well . Volvo has been working on its SuperTruck concept for the past five years, which initially aimed to increase fuel efficiency by 50 percent over existing cargo trucking technology. Now, Volvo says the SuperTruck is 70 percent more fuel efficient than a comparable base model and has achieved over 12 miles per gallon in tests which, for a semi truck, is really stellar. In 2011, the U.S. Department of Energy issued a challenge to car companies to create a cargo truck with 50 percent higher freight efficiency over existing trucks. Five years later, the Volvo SuperTruck has exceeded that goal. The truck’s lightweight design is a key element of its efficiency, and Volvo managed to create a concept semi truck that weighs over 3,200 lbs less than its cousins on the road. Most of the weight was saved by the aluminum chassis, which is half the weight of traditional steel (only the bolts on the SuperTruck are steel). Because of the vast difference in weight, the SuperTruck uses a slightly smaller engine, which increases fuel efficiency even further. Related: This next-gen SuperTruck is twice as efficient as today’s semis The SuperTruck’s entire roof, hood and side fairings are made from lightweight but super strong carbon fiber, which increases performance while saving weight. To reduce production costs, Volvo is working to develop alternative materials, such as a recycled version of carbon fiber. Volvo created a new integrated powertrain with refined mechanics to chase peak efficiency as well. There was no existing technology to achieve the program’s goals, so the company and its partners designed a new turbo compounding system to recover the energy normally wasted, boosting fuel efficiency by up to 6.5 percent. In tests, the SuperTruck rates more than 12 miles per gallon, compared to the 4 to 8mpg by current semi trucks on the road. Via Green Car Congress Images via Volvo

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Volvo SuperTruck improves big rig fuel efficiency by a whopping 70%

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