One of the Tesla Semi Truck prototypes has recently been spotted charging at the newly built Megacharger station outside Gigafactory 1 in Nevada. This charging station layout and stall design are different from the Superchargers as these are specifically designed for Tesla’s class-8 electric semi-trucks.
The photos of the Tesla Semi while charging at the Megacharger were taken by one of the earliest Model Y owners who got his vehicle delivered during the difficult COVID-19 peak times last year.
The layout of the Megacharger station is designed to accommodate the large Tesla Semi truck even when it has the trailer attached so the truck can turn, park, and leave the station easily.
The term Megacharger evolved alongside the launch of the electric Tesla Semi. Due to the ultra-large battery pack of the Tesla Semi, it needed a higher level of electric power to charge compared to a Tesla car. In the early days of Tesla Semi testing across North America, the automaker used to charge the Tesla Semi prototypes by joining 4-5 Supercharger stall connectors to an adapter and then connecting it to the Megahcarging port of the Semi.
In the company’s 2020 Impact Report, Tesla revealed that it is developing a network of such Megacharger stations at trucking stops across North America and Europe.
Tesla’s Gigafactory Nevada was the first Gigafactory that Tesla originally built for cell manufacturing. Tesla has been working on the battery and powertrain of its Semi Truck at Giga Nevada since last year as Elon Musk revealed in an email that it is time to bring Tesla Semi to volume production.
However, there have not been many updates of the Tesla Semi production progress since then. But the images of the first Megcharger at Giga Nevada say that Tesla is constantly working on this project.
Since the Tesla Semi battery packs will be using the new 4680 cell form factor. So, the automaker must scale the new battery cell production at Giga Nevada, which might have been achieved to get the Semi Truck program rolling.
Just recently PepsiCo CEO Ramon Laguarta said that Tesla will be delivering the first batch of their Tesla Semi order in Q4 2021 (video interview below). This statement by the PepsiCo CEO suggests that the Tesla Semi production program is actually accelerating. The Tesla Semi order tracking page that I have maintained for a few years now shows that PepsiCo had ordered 100 Tesla Semis in December 2017.
Tesla enthusiast and social media influencer Sawyer Merrit also obtained the following aerial footage of Giga Nevada earlier this month that shows a lot of activity at the factory.