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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I don't know what to make of this. A known Tesla stock 'short' claims these photos prove Tesla can't sell all its production. I don't believe that but don't see an explanation, beyond maybe they can't arrange transport to move them out.
Anybody know what's going on?


Electrek article


Photo: Lathrop facility, 60 miles east of Fremont. ~2k cars. Claimed twice as many stored at Burbank.

 

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My WAG would be that it is strategic concerning phaseout of Federal tax credits. If they wanted to time the 200,000th sale in early July, it makes sense to build at full production capacity and stockpile the cars. Then when the 200k car is sold, release the inventory to maximize the unlimited sales that are permitted during the phaseout.

At least, that's what I would have done.

It might also explain why there is extremely short wait times for people just now jumping into the Tesla reservation queue. There are stories of people getting their car within a couple weeks.
 

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co-worker got his in 3 days from initial order to delivery - had to scramble to find the $$$ - was expecting more time - I'm pretty sure they can sell Model 3's right now - anyone saying contrary with out analysis or evidence is probably just a Tesla bear…photos rarely tell the whole story especially with ragard to manufacturing and inventory management.
 

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The picture doesn't show the entirety of the Tesla Fremont manufacturing campus. Where's the 'tent'?



This is why, if I were investing, I wouldn't touch TSLA stock with a 10' pole. There's Tesla the company, and TSLA the stock hype - positive or negative - two distinct entities. I would tend to think the longs, shorts, bears, & bulls holding positions will do and say anything to tease the stock one way or another. Even on conference calls, the CEO evades every question. The only thing one can hang their hat on are the 10Q's. And even that is suspect.

Otherwise, assume it's fake news.
 

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there are also thounsand of Tesla Model 3's "stored" down near the Fremont delivery center - they have a facility for delivery about 1 mile from the factory - they no longer do the actual delivery at the actual factory - I small sign of maturity IMHO…drove past a butt-load of Model 3's a few week ago all in the white paint wraps…
 

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Tesla claims that they have over 400,000 confirmed reservations, and that they can deliver a new Model 3 to anyone who wants one in under three or four months, depending upon the model configuration, which excludes the unobtanium $35k base model.

Am I the only one who thinks the math doesn’t add up?

At about 5,000 Model 3 production per week, about 80,000 would be built in four months. That’s only 20% of outstanding confirmed reservations, discounting any new buyers.

Why would reservation holders who’ve already waited up to two years not be ordering at a faster clip?

The relatively short delivery estimate is even more curious given the start of the federal tax credit phase-out starting 1/1/2019. That $7.5k should be a powerful incentive for anyone with a reservation to order as soon as possible, yet Tesla only estimates a few months wait.

Are there hundreds of thousands of reservation holders with cold feet?

Maybe I’m missing something, but it’s strange that most of the current reservation holders haven’t already jumped in with confirmed orders.

Or, maybe the conversion rate from reservation to confirmed order is much lower than Tesla is letting on, which would not be good news for future Model 3 demand.
 

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I believe the vast majority of people signed up for the Model 3 thinking they could get a Tesla for $35,000 with a minimum of $10,000 in credits/rebates. Buying a sub $30,000 car is much different than a close to $60,000 car. I think a lot of people are sitting on their reservations because when they tried to get financing for a $60,000 car, their banks laughed at them.
 
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Why would you want to buy into a overpriced car with poor ergonomics and high operating, insurance and maintenance costs when the Bolt EV is much better?
Let me know when Tesla produces maintenance service manual for their car owners out there. Let me know when insurance premiums come down to earth for Tesla's.
Love my Chevy Bolt EV. It's like the Fender guitar ads from the 1960's---- you wont part with yours either!
 

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In February this year I placed my $1000 reservation for a Tesla 3. My wife thought it would be an acceptable alternative to the Audi A5 she always wanted because I told her I would never buy another ICE vehicle. In March I decided it was time to stop driving my 8 year old Tundra and go EV. So I got my Bolt. A couple weeks ago I requested my deposit refund from Tesla - not because the "base" M3 wasn't available, not because I think Tesla will falter and not because it's a sedan with limited cargo space. I asked for a refund because I am so spoiled by the Bolt's one-pedal driving experience. It's my favorite feature. Now, any car that requires me to use the brake pedal to come to a complete stop is dead to me.

I've been a car nut since forever and 2 door coupes are my weakness, but this ugly little 4 door Chevy econo-box has won my heart!

So that's an explanation from 0.00025% of the reservation holders.
 

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Tesla claims that they have over 400,000 confirmed reservations, and that they can deliver a new Model 3 to anyone who wants one in under three or four months, depending upon the model configuration, which excludes the unobtanium $35k base model.

Am I the only one who thinks the math doesn’t add up?

At about 5,000 Model 3 production per week, about 80,000 would be built in four months. That’s only 20% of outstanding confirmed reservations, discounting any new buyers.

Why would reservation holders who’ve already waited up to two years not be ordering at a faster clip?

The relatively short delivery estimate is even more curious given the start of the federal tax credit phase-out starting 1/1/2019. That $7.5k should be a powerful incentive for anyone with a reservation to order as soon as possible, yet Tesla only estimates a few months wait.

Are there hundreds of thousands of reservation holders with cold feet?

Maybe I’m missing something, but it’s strange that most of the current reservation holders haven’t already jumped in with confirmed orders.

Or, maybe the conversion rate from reservation to confirmed order is much lower than Tesla is letting on, which would not be good news for future Model 3 demand.
My theory is that they've met most (if not all) of the domestic demand for the Model 3 LR with all its variations (including AWD and P). That means the remaining 300,000 to 400,000 are foreign (possibly RHD markets?) and domestic small-battery Model 3 reservation holders.

I think that explains all the stress we've seen them operating under (consider Elon's outbursts) because they are on a timer before the full U.S. EV tax credit goes away. However, the 30% margin they are quoting requires that they sell a majority of their cars at $50,000 or more.

I think what we saw happen was, Tesla opened the domestic ordering for >$50,000 cars with a $2,500 non-refundable deposit hoping the demand would see them through the end of the year. However, the demand hasn't yet materialized.

As for the cars sitting on the lot, they were building them ahead of orders, and because they had so few variations, they were just matching orders to cars as they were filled. I don't know that there is a way to verify that unless people who start plopping down $2,500 now start receiving cars with VINs from weeks ago.
 

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...published answer:

Thousands of Tesla Model 3 cars are sitting in giant parking lots in California — here's why (TSLA)

Summary:


  • Photos of numerous Tesla vehicles at locations in California have shown up on Twitter.
  • These are likely staging areas for vehicles that are on their way to customers in other parts of the US.
  • Tesla's rapidly expanding production of its Model 3 means that the company is running out of space at its factory in Fremont
  • Tesla doesn't have a dealer network to use as storage yards for vehicles coming out of production ( < This)
  • It's a simple logistical problem
 

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My theory is that ... I think what we saw happen was, Tesla opened the domestic ordering for >$50,000 cars with a $2,500 non-refundable deposit hoping the demand would see them through the end of the year. However, the demand hasn't yet materialized...
Not sure what metric is bing used to determine whether demand has materialized or not, but any objectivity I have applied so far seems to point to a continued strong demand for the Model 3. With the constant tug of war between investors on both sides of this fence, it is anyones guess as to what constitutes real vs fake news and the motivation behind it. Someone snaps a picture of a large stockpile of cars in a lot and then publishes a story about poor sales of said stockpiled car model... (thats the beauty of the internet... anyone with a wifi can be a news media outlet) until you find out that the guy doing the publishing took a second mortgage to sell the said stockpiled car model's manufacturer short$$$. I wouldn't blame him if he is getting a little desperate right about now.

Compare the above to the linked article below to try and make sense of it all. Again, it's anyones guess. What I can confirm is that reported VIN's leading up to June 2018 seem to make sense in that they appear to match the number of reported cars sold, as well as the actual VIN of a car delivered in that month. If I fast forward to the current month, in a completely unrelated event, a new Model 3 owner that took delivery of his car in July reported a VIN that would seem to coincide with a 20k+ monthly production rate, which again seems to resonate with the explanation given in the linked article below. But aside from that, I can also add that the number of new owners in my area is apparently growing if the newly formed local EV club is any indication. This information is not confirmed as a member of said newly formed club, but was received in a chance meeting in a parking lot where I was informed of and invited to the clubs next outing. Apparently about 40 strong in this sleepy little shire about 1 hour out of Montreal. But aside from that, I can confirm that there was definitely a crowd of people taking deliveries during my visit to Tesla Montreal. The place resembled a fast food court in a shopping mall more then it did a store selling cars. I can't say the same thing for the two other car dealerships I visited this past month.

To be honest, what little I am able to confirm in the 'real", seems to resonate with this:
https://insideevs.com/will-tesla-model-3-place-in-top-5-selling-sedans-in-u-s-in-2h-2018/

...published answer:

Summary:


  • Photos of numerous Tesla vehicles at locations in California have shown up on Twitter.
  • These are likely staging areas for vehicles that are on their way to customers in other parts of the US.
  • Tesla's rapidly expanding production of its Model 3 means that the company is running out of space at its factory in Fremont
  • Tesla doesn't have a dealer network to use as storage yards for vehicles coming out of production ( < This)
  • It's a simple logistical problem
 

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In February this year I placed my $1000 reservation for a Tesla 3. My wife thought it would be an acceptable alternative to the Audi A5 she always wanted because I told her I would never buy another ICE vehicle. In March I decided it was time to stop driving my 8 year old Tundra and go EV. So I got my Bolt. A couple weeks ago I requested my deposit refund from Tesla - not because the "base" M3 wasn't available, not because I think Tesla will falter and not because it's a sedan with limited cargo space. I asked for a refund because I am so spoiled by the Bolt's one-pedal driving experience. It's my favorite feature. Now, any car that requires me to use the brake pedal to come to a complete stop is dead to me.

I've been a car nut since forever and 2 door coupes are my weakness, but this ugly little 4 door Chevy econo-box has won my heart!

So that's an explanation from 0.00025% of the reservation holders.
So, what are doing about your wife's new car? Another Bolt? I'm not sure that's going to satisfy her Audi A5 itch.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Those explanations make sense but I still don't understand using Lathrop for a staging area. Burbank, sure, there are Tesla customers there.


Lathrop is an hour, 60 miles, east of Fremont. It's over in the Central Valley (farmland, no dense population) in the opposite direction from the likely Northern California concentration of customers in the Bay Area. Cars that Tesla sells into the Bay Area will get trucked back past the Fremont plant on their way to the customer.
 

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So, what are doing about your wife's new car? Another Bolt? I'm not sure that's going to satisfy her Audi A5 itch.
Fortunately she's still happy with her little Volvo C30 (she also favors coupes). We're in no rush to replace it - 2010 with barely 30,000 mi.

I am excited to see what's coming in the next few years: MiniE, VW I.D.s, Volvo (Polestar), hopefully some less expensive options from Merc, BMW and Audi. Maybe even Toyota or Honda will surprise us with an EV.

Then again, buying a personal car may become outdated in the next few years...:eek:
 

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Those explanations make sense but I still don't understand using Lathrop for a staging area. Burbank, sure, there are Tesla customers there.


Lathrop is an hour, 60 miles, east of Fremont. It's over in the Central Valley (farmland, no dense population) in the opposite direction from the likely Northern California concentration of customers in the Bay Area. Cars that Tesla sells into the Bay Area will get trucked back past the Fremont plant on their way to the customer.
Maybe the cars being staged there have a destination beyond California, East or North into Canada. I know for certain my car passed through Vancouver before making its way East to Montreal. Maybe Tesla was able to get the space they needed at a favourable price, or maybe it offers some other logistical advantage. A good point to keep in mind is that without the traditional dealership model, it makes sense that Tesla would have to resort to something like what was captured in the linked image. The most logical explanation is that the increase in production has made this more visible now.
 

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Tesla is now quoting 1-3 months for new m3 orders. They've just about caught up with demand...

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/07/21/new-demand-may-be-slipping-for-tesla-model-3-early-orders.html
You might be right, and I think it is fair to say that it is anyones guess really, but I am left wondering if the linked article isn't being deceptive on purpose. I know the article starts out sounding factual in its claim that demand for the Model 3 is slipping, and that Tesla refutes that claim, but the article ends on more speculative notes such as,

"if Tesla can get you a Model 3 in no more than three months, it suggests that either more reservation-holders have backed out than it claims — or that a high percentage have so far declined to transform those reservations into actual orders."

and

"A fall-off in orders, or a sharp rise in cancellations, would cause some serious headaches."

IMO, the article is more suggestive then anything else, and simply overstates the obvious in speculation. It would be similar to saying something like "if you get caught out in the rain tomorrow without an umbrella, you are probably going to get wet". No real big news there.

So before making any definite conclusions from the article, it might be worthwhile to consider the following; Tesla has yet to start filling European orders (worldwide), or deliveries of its base Model 3. The fact that Tesla hasn't even started shipping Model 3's outside USA/Canada indicates to me that the article is probably baseless. And when I add to this to the fact that there still seems to be a constant stream of people configuring and taking delivery of the Model 3 as reported on the TMC forum, I would say that Tesla appears to still be playing catchup in the US and Canada. While my feeling is that European and other nonNA destinations will open soon, this will likely play out to be a big factor, and again, that is without base model deliveries.

To hint at what this could mean, consider the Nissan Leaf. Sales of the Leaf in NA are slow, while Nissan is gaining a lot of momentum in Europe. https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=3&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwid06q927HcAhUKvlkKHc6jBjcQFgg3MAI&url=https://insideevs.com/a-new-2018-nissan-leaf-is-sold-every-10-minutes/&usg=AOvVaw3Im31BND5xcRt9D7NrLYBF

In a market where 200+ mile EV's are available, Leaf sales have stalled, but in a market where availability of a 200+ mile EV is restricted, Leaf sales are strong. This bodes well in Tesla's favour, and could represent a significant uptake in demand for the new sedan. So no, I really can't say that I believe Tesla has caught up with demand, but they are getting there though.
 
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