Tech innovator Elon Musk isn’t one to shy away from talking about exciting new concepts he has dreamed up. At a TED conference in Vancouver, the chief executive of Tesla (TSLA), SpaceX, the Boring Company and Neuralink, discussed the future of transport with TED's Head Curator, Chris Anderson. The video has already been viewed over 100,000 times. (See also: End Times: Ways Elon Musk Believes the World Could End)
Here are three highlights:
A “spry” long-range truck that is powerful enough to tow other big rigs up hills and can be driven like a sports car was how Musk described one of Tesla’s latest electrical vehicle inventions. “With the Tesla Semi, we want to show that an electric truck actually can out-torque any diesel semi," he said. "If you had a tug of war competition, the Tesla Semi will tug the diesel semi uphill." (See also: Tesla's Automation Expert Ousted After Clash With Musk.)
To tease the audience even further, a photo of a sleek-looking truck featuring headlights that resemble current Tesla car models' was presented. Musk previously claimed that the truck will be unveiled this September, so expect even more exciting updates to appear over the summer.
Underground Road Networks
Musk’s dislike for “soul-crushing” traffic jams also saw him discuss plans to build multi-level tunnel networks for vehicles. The Boring Company CEO claimed that the firm is already working on this ambitious project in Los Angeles and even brought up the idea of creating an ultra-fast rail transport system called Hyperloop to accompany cars below the nation’s cities.
Part of Musk’s preference to build underground road networks stems from his skepticism about flying cars. "If there were a whole bunch of flying cars going all over the place, that's not an anxiety-reducing situation," he said. (See also: Why Flying Cars Will Not Fly Soon.)
Asleep at the Wheel
While the world will probably have to wait quite some time before underground driving becomes a mainstream reality, Musk is confident of achieving other impressive breakthroughs in the near future. For example, by the end of this year he believes that the right technology will be in place to enable drivers to fall asleep in Los Angeles and wake up in New York.
“We’re still on track for being able to go cross-country — from L.A. to New York — by the end of the year, fully autonomous,” Musk said. “Essentially, November or December of this year, we should be able to go all the way from a parking lot in California to a parking lot in New York, no controls touched at any point during the entire journey,” he added.
Trips to Space and Gigafactories
Other exciting updates discussed at the TED conference included plans to facilitate space exploration and the building of four more gigafactories to help meet global demand for battery cells.