What is the latest trend in the fleet industry? Zero-emission semi-trucks? Evidently, it implies so, with the hype encircling the Tesla’s recently revealed autonomous electric trucks and versions from other manufacturers such as Cummins and Daimler preceded it, in addition to hydrogen powered versions of Nikola Motor Co. and Toyota. Nevertheless, to add to the competition, the Los Angeles-based Transportation lab ‘Thor Trucks’ is planning to launch the new truck, which starts to ship in 2019.
Thor Trucks -A Brief Description
Their semi electric truck known as the ET-One, assures a range of 300 miles with a capacity to haul 80,000 pounds of cargo. What to suggest? As you anticipate, it is exactly targeting the similar short haul market as Tesla’s product architect targets.
Moreover, there are two versions of ET-One available, for $150,000 to obtain a 100-mile range version and for $250,000 to obtain a 300-mile version, which is having a speed of 70 mph. When comparing it to Tesla’s electric semi trucks that offers 300-mile version for $150,000 and 500-mile range version for $180,000. Furthermore, Tesla also offers the leasing facility for both trucks.
Similar to Tesla’s approach, Thor trucks also inclined to design oriented approach and focused on a design with an expansive, curved metal front panel that slants down the grille, which highlights the company’s unique Thor’s hammer influenced logo.
Is it Capable of Mass Production?
Meanwhile, the Thor team consists of 18 members, and for now, it is incapable of mass production capability. The team, however, utilize the spare parts from reputed suppliers.
SWOT Analysis of ET-One
1) Strengths of ET-One
- Navistar framework
- Heavy-duty axles from Dana
- Motor from supplier TM4
- Its own battery packs
- Assist to produce around 4700 pound feet of torque
- 22- inch touchscreen on the dashboard
- Skilled engineers from Faraday Future, Boeing, and BYD (Build Your Dreams)
2) Weaknesses of ET-One
- Absence of external funding
- Comprises only 18 employees
- Inconsistency in production details (compared to accuracy level of Tesla production timelines)
3) Opportunities of ET-One
- Fleet companies prefer the electric semi-trucks over the normal ones
- Capable of offering adequate competition to other manufacturers
- Flawless and appealing design
4) Threats of ET-One
- Competition from reputed automakers such as Tesla, Toyota, Daimler, etc.
- Lack of experience in the industry
- Increased cost (while ET-One demands $150,000 for a 100-mile range version and $250,000 for the 300-mile range version, Tesla only demands $150,000 for a 300 mile range version, and $180,000 for a 500-mile range version)
The co-founder and CEO of Thor Trucks Inc., Dakota Semler, assures that in order to be successful, you don’t have to be a business tycoon, such as Ford or GM. As a matter of fact, he adds that, without the single source of outside funding, they possess a team of skilled, determined, and ardent engineers, who is ready to spend time in researching and constructing their dream project ET-One in-house.
Let’s wait patiently and figure out how the Thor trucks fulfill the requirements of reputed investors, entrepreneurs, and financiers.