The retail giant in 2014 presented a strikingly similar vision of an electrified semi to help achieve the next leap in fleet efficiency.
Walmart is among the first companies to show interest in Tesla's all-electric semi.
The retailer boasts the highest revenue of any global company and among the largest private logistics fleets, accumulating around 700 million miles each year.
A sustainability initiative launched in 2005 aimed to double the fleet's efficiency by the end of 2015. Specialized driver training and collaboration with tractor and trailer manufacturers helped the company achieve its goal, saving $1 billion annually and avoiding 650,000 metric tons of CO2.
Walmart and Peterbilt in 2014 revealed a futuristic truck concept that is strikingly similar to Tesla's semi in terms of powertrain technology and aerodynamic styling. Revising the shape achieved a 20-percent reduction in aerodynamic drag, while a range-extending hybrid powertrain provided a way to maximize fuel reductions for short hauls while still enabling longer deliveries.
Tesla's electric semi is claimed to slash the all-in cost per mile, with an estimated $200,000 savings over a million miles -- the length of the powertrain warranty. CEO Elon Musk boldly claimed the per-mile cost even beats the railroad industry when the semis are clustered into convoys. Range is expected to reach 500 miles at highway speed with a full load in tow.
The first Tesla semi trucks could begin rolling off the assembly line in 2019.