Jim monkmeyer, President of DHL supply chain transportation department, confirmed that the company has ordered 10 Tesla electric semi trailers, and the production of these orders will begin in 2019. He said that this order for electric trucks is an attempt. It is still several years before DHL converts most of its trucks into electric trucks. However, the company has a plan to replace fuel trucks with electric trucks, which can significantly reduce operating costs.
Due to the cost difference between fuel and electricity and the advantages in maintenance cost, the cost saved after using the electric truck for about two years can offset the difference in the purchase cost between the fuel truck and the electric truck. Relatively speaking, the selling price of the fuel truck is low, but the operating cost is high. Jim monkmeyer said in an interview that DHL expects to recover the cost of Tesla electric semi-trailer in about 18 months according to the use status and maintenance cost of different energy sources. Taking advantage of Tesla electric semi-trailer truck in terms of maintenance cost, the number of engine components of electric vehicles is less and simpler, which is convenient for daily maintenance.
The economy of electric trucks is the key to attracting customers. DHL has rich experience in the application of electric vehicles. There are about 5000 electric scooters used by the company to deliver goods in various regions.
The annual mileage of trucks used by logistics companies is about 65000 to 100000 miles. Tesla promises to save 20% of the operating cost per mile of its electric trucks. The cost per mile of the new electric semi-trailer truck is $1.26. In the logistics and transportation industry, the average transportation cost per mile of diesel trucks is $1.51.
The economic gap between fuel trucks and electric trucks will continue to change, and the efficiency of fuel trucks will continue to improve in the future. By 2020, the cost disadvantage of fuel trucks relative to Tesla electric trucks will be very small. DHL said that it still considers the operating costs of the two types of power trucks. Finally, these two types of vehicles can be switched at will and operated at the same time. However, the application of electric trucks still needs to face the problems of charging equipment and how logistics companies adjust the gas station in the warehouse to a super charging station.
Jim monkmeyer said that the biggest challenge is how to establish a charging network and how to get more support. DHL needs a charging system in all regions to be able to apply electric trucks on a large scale. This will be a very big challenge and a major factor limiting the application of electric trucks.