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Act Expo 2024: the importance of starting the journey early and planning infrastructure

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Las Vegas, May 21, 2024 – During the ActExpo 2024 keynote, Dan Priestley from Tesla Semi emphasized the importance for fleets to begin their transition to electric vehicles as soon as possible and to plan their infrastructure today if they haven’t already. In a discussion moderated by Erik Neandross, key points included the necessity of rapidly developing charging infrastructure, technician training, and the interoperability of charging systems.

Start the transition now

Dan Priestley stressed the importance of fleets starting their transition to electric vehicles without delay. “Waiting to test one truck for a year, then ten trucks the next year, then a hundred trucks, will leave you years behind those who move faster,” he warned. He encouraged companies to consider large-scale adoption as soon as possible to unlock savings and benefits more quickly.

Planning charging infrastructure

The discussion revealed that planning charging infrastructure is crucial. Priestley explained that Tesla works with customers to assess their power needs and plan the necessary infrastructure, including substation upgrades if required. “We see this in blocks of three megawatts because that’s how utilities bring secondary services to sites,” he said. “Once you exceed that, you start touching on primary services, which involves much larger infrastructure projects.”

Technician training and service

Priestley also addressed the importance of technician training for electric vehicle maintenance. He noted that Tesla wants to collaborate with fleets to enable their in-house service teams to handle maintenance as much as possible. “We want to provide you with the right tools, physical or virtual, so you can perform these tasks reliably and successfully,” he stated.

Interoperability of charging systems

The interoperability of charging systems was another crucial point of discussion. Priestley emphasized the importance of all vehicles being able to connect to all charging systems to enable widespread electrification. Tesla has already opened its supercharger network to other OEMs and encourages the industry to adopt the North American Charging Standard (NACS). “Everything needs to plug into everything; that’s the only way this works,” he asserted.

Vision for the future

Looking to the future, Priestley expressed Tesla’s vision of becoming a major player in the heavy trucking sector and facilitating the transition to electrification for all heavy-duty transport. “We hope to inspire others to join us on this journey,” he said. “We have big ambitions and we’re here to stay.”

The Tesla Semi keynote at ActExpo 2024 highlighted the urgency for fleets to start their transition to electric vehicles now and to plan their infrastructure. Collaboration with utilities, technician training, and the importance of interoperability are key elements for a successful transition. With a clear vision for the future, Tesla is committed to being a leader in sustainable trucking and inspiring the entire industry to adopt greener transportation practices.

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