Anheuser-Busch Reserves 40 Of Tesla's Self-Driving Electric Semi Trucks

Tesla received some of their biggest orders for their Semi on Thursday, including Anheuser-Busch grabbing 40 of them. Expected to launch in 2019, the beer distributor wants to cut back on their carbon footprint and make the roads safer with these vehicles.


May 24 2019, Updated 11:48 a.m. ET

We’ve seen a number of craft beer companies implement a more eco-friendly process in creating their beverage. Now, a major player in the beer industry, Anheuser-Busch, is doing the same with their distribution. The Budweiser company has ordered 40 Tesla Semis to cut down on fuel costs and to reduce carbon emissions.

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Anheuser-Busch has set a goal to reduce their carbon footprint by 30 percent by 2025, and one of the ways they’ll tackle it is through beer delivery. An order of 40 semi-trucks is one of the biggest Tesla has received; in the same day, Sysco currently holds the record with 10 more semis.

“At Anheuser-Busch, we are constantly seeking new ways to make our supply chain more sustainable, efficient, and innovative,” James Sembrot, Senior Director of Logistics Strategy, said in a press release. “This investment in Tesla semi-trucks helps us achieve these goals while improving road safety and lowering our environmental impact.”

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How much does all of this cost for these companies? According to Electrek, if they bought them outright, it’ll cost between $150,000 to $180,000 for ranges between 300 miles and 500 miles. It would be up to an even $200,000 for a “Founders Series” edition. That means the Budweiser order could hit $8 million while Sysco’s would hover up to $10 million.

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There is a chance that these trucks will be leased or if they’ll be going through one of their carriers. It’ll make a small dent at the beginning when looking at the bigger picture -- Anheuser-Busch currently has around 750 delivery trucks in their fleet. According to the Wall Street Journal, the Tesla vehicles will be shipping their product to wholesalers up to 200 miles around their breweries across the United States.

Not only will these trucks bring down Anheuser-Busch’s carbon footprint, but it will also provide safety for truck drivers. The company also wants to improve road safety with their deliveries, and these trucks would also provide more efficiency with their autonomous driving features. This isn’t the first time Anheuser-Busch has jumped into autonomy.

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In October 2016, Uber’s self-driving startup, Otto, had one of their trucks haul over 50,000 cans of Budweiser beer from Fort Collins, Colorado, to Colorado Springs. For the 132-mile trek, it mostly used its self-driving capability without human involvement. The only exception was when the truck reached city limits. Each can that was delivered has a special marking on the product.

Anheuser-Busch is looking at other versions of electric trucks, specifically Nikola’s hydrogen-electric semi. This provides a range between 800 and 1,200 miles, a significant advantage over Tesla’s estimated 500-mile distance. It’ll take awhile for these Class 8 trucks to hit the road with deliveries expected in 2019.

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