Tesla delivered the first batch of Semi-trucks to PepsiCo on 1st December 2022. According to various reports, Tesla delivered 36 trucks in total on this day. Later on, PepsiCo announced that the company aims to increase the number of Tesla Semis to 100 in 2023.
Last week, a Tesla owner and enthusiast drove by PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay factory and warehouse in Modesto, California and spotted a large number of Tesla Semis standing in the parking lot.
During filming the parking lot with his phone, Mr. Zane counted the trucks, and according to him, there were 38 Tesla Semis parked at this location.
If there are 38 functional Tesla Semi trucks at Frito-Lay’s Modesto facility, there must be more at PepsiCo’s facility in Fresno, California. Although there’s no information on the cumulative count of the trucks, we can safely assume that there are several more Tesla Semis in operation than the 36 delivered in December.
This also implies that Tesla is slowly but steadily delivering more trucks to PepsiCo which placed an order of 100 Tesla Semis back in 2017.
Production at the Tesla Semi pilot production plant at Giga Nevada is currently limited due to the size of the factory and supply chain issues. But Tesla’s Elon Musk revealed plans for the expansion of this Tesla factory last month and a major part of it is the Tesla Semi production facility.
To keep these Tesla Semi trucks moving, there needs to be a sufficient charging infrastructure in place. In a short documentary report by CNBC (video below), PepsiCo unveiled that there are currently 4 Megacharger stalls installed at the Frito-Lay factory and warehouse location in Modesto, California.
Frito-Lay Tesla Semis drive around 425 miles (684 km) on a single hauling trip from Modesto, CA to its delivery points and back. According to a PepsiCo executive, a Tesa Semi charges up to 400 miles in an hour using the onsite 750 kW Megachargers (Tesla advertised a 500-mile range).
It was revealed in a recent government filing that PepsiCo and Tesla are working together to install 8 Megachargers at PepsiCo’s Fresno, California facility. Thus further implying that PepsiCo is getting a constant supply of Tesla Semis and need to expand its charging infrastructure accordingly.
Although Tesla has a sizable Megacharger station constructed at Giga Nevada, an 8-stall Megacharger station is the largest such facility developed for a customer yet.
Executives from PepsiCo and the California Air Resources Board shared their experience with the acquisition and implementation of Tesla Semi into PepsiCo’s logistics that aims towards a zero-emissions future for the company and the state.
“We developed what’s called zero or near-zero-emissions freight facilities pilot program back in 2019 timeframe. And this Frito-Lay facility won one of those grants for a complete transformation of this facility to zero-emissions,” Steve Cliff Executive Officer of California Air Resources Board said during his interview with CNBC at the Frito-Lay facility in Modesto, CA.
“We thought it would make a smart move to make the deposit, partner with Tesla. So, we put a deposit down several years ago for 100 units when they first announced. We thought it would have great application, we had the experience from the last 10 years with other EV products,” PepsiCo’s VP of Supply Chain Mike O’Connell said.
Aerial footage of the location also showed that PepsiCo has a sizable array of Tesla Powerpack energy storage systems installed at the Modesto site. Paired with solar panels at the facility, PepsiCo is already generating a good amount of renewable energy at Frito-Lay Modesto.
O’Connell also said that PepsiCo is getting good feedback from Tesa Semi drivers. “They like not needing to fuel the vehicles. They come in and plug them in and can leave them, and they like overall performance,” he said.
CNBC posted an entire 16-minute report on this topic which you can watch below. Let us know your thoughts in the comments section, ironically also located below :).
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