Leaked Video Appears to Show Tesla Bus Prototype

Chris Teague
by Chris Teague

leaked video appears to show tesla bus prototype

Tesla appears to finally be ready to start deliveries of the Cybertruck, nearly four years after its reveal event. Despite the delays surrounding the truck and the elusive Roadster, Tesla has a number of side projects going on, including an electric minibus.

Twitter user Jacob Orth uploaded a video of the Tesla prototype, which shows the large, almost completely glass construction and what appears to be 12 seats. Though they’re hard to make out, it appears there are wheels under the prototype, but it’s unclear if they’re for testing like the ugly wheels sometimes spotted on early Cybertruck models.

Tesla started talking about expanding into commercial segments years ago with the introduction of its Master Plan Part 2. This bus prototype appears to be made for use in The Boring Company’s loops, but there’s no confirmation from Tesla and the automaker doesn’t have a PR department to ask. 

Electrified transit vehicles are a great way for towns to cut their carbon footprints, though the Tesla buses may never see the light of day (literally). Other automakers, including General Motors with its Cruise autonomous vehicles division, are jumping into transit and commercial vehicles, and we’ll see more as Canoo and others get closer to production-ready vehicles.

[Image: Jacob Orth via Twitter]

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  • Tassos Tassos on Jul 11, 2023

    Interesting, and worth pursuing, as well as many other urban fleet vehicles, which are far more suited for EVs than the average private buyer (who usually only owns ONE car in every location-home, summer home etc).

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    • VoGhost VoGhost on Jul 12, 2023

      28CL, Batteries are the most recycled part on modern vehicles. The battery on an EV bus will likely be worth $10K in minerals, even after 30 years of service, so the recycling "cost" will actually be negative.

      I thought you knew cars.

  • Jeff S Jeff S on Jul 11, 2023

    The other day I saw a Nikola with a trailer with Nikola on the sides. It probably was being tested but it is the first time I have seen an EV tractor truck on the road.

  • Kwik_Shift Kwik_Shift on Jul 11, 2023

    The whole EV fad should have started with city buses, police, ambulance, firefighting and maybe even taxis. If it succeeds then the buying public may be more receptive. Now with sales declining, maybe this is their last resort.

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    • VoGhost VoGhost on Jul 12, 2023

      Yes, kwik_shift, Inflation is 3% and the economy continues to grow quickly, with the best job market in 50 years, and investment in factories at more than double the pace of 2017-2020. But that doesn't change the fact that EV sales are rising rapidly.

  • MaintenanceCosts MaintenanceCosts on Jul 12, 2023

    Electric buses to date have some surprising operational issues. They are fine for rush-hour commuter service, or all-day on very short city routes, but they don't yet have the range for the most demanding assignments. There are bus assignments in our local agency that cover 400 miles over 22 hours with 3 or 4 drivers, and you'd need two to three EV buses to cover those where a single hybrid bus with a full tank can do it.

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    • VoGhost VoGhost on Jul 12, 2023

      How come millions of BEV owners can put in Level 2 chargers in their garages for about $800, but cities can't figure out how to do it?