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Model X giveaway sleight of hand?

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Point one – I am an indefatigable Tesla aficionado.

Point two – I think perhaps Tesla pulled off an illusion that would have made David Copperfield proud.

When the credit program was first announced I was somewhat taken aback. And, as much as we all want to see Bjorn get his Model X, was this really necessary?

· Tesla does not lack for sales.
· Tesla has sold out (at least) the next six months of Model X production.
· Tesla can’t even keep up with Model S orders, and that vehicle will celebrate its fourth birthday next year.
· Elon promised the X configurator would be available in July.

Instead we got a promotion with three free Model X Founder’s series to be given away.

So is it an inescapable conclusion that Tesla deftly distracted us all and is going to delay the X launch another month or two?
Was the new stock offering rushed in order to come before the results of the illusion became obvious (and thus insure significantly more funds for growth than might be the case)?

Let’s face it – we love Elon, but this smacks of perfectionism in the X. Who could blame him? He has promised to ease up on the Model 3 so this might be his last chance until the new Roadster. And, truth be told, the X is more his baby than the S, so he would tinker even more. And don’t we all want a perfect Model X?

So, what do we all think?


(Of course, if the configurator goes on-line next week, then I am, thankfully, wrong.)
There may well be an X delay; but whether there is or not, I suspect this S referral program is more about keeping S sales up until X production ramps up. A lot of people are going to want to hold off on buying an S until the X is announced, and then until they see one in person, etc. There may also soon be a flood of used S on the market as people get their X; Tesla wants people to keep buying new S rather than just scarf up the old ones they already sold. (It's not zero-sum as less interest in the used ones drives their prices down which brings in a new group of buyers; so more cars get sold overall).

Tesla had been production constrained, but they have ramped up considerably and now it looks like they are keeping up with demand really well. Once the X is ramped they are going to be building considerably faster; the X offering will obviously expand demand but once we're over the initial backlog I'm not sure by as much as total production will increase. They do have to keep finding buyers, and the pool of people that can afford an S, have heard of it, need a car now, and are willing to take a chance on something newfangled is only so big.

Of course, all speculation. Real numbers are hard to come by. Impossible in some cases - who knows what percentage of buyers will want S vs X.
This has been discussed extensively in the investor's forum, though some of the most salient points are as follows: it's a great tool to counter the Osborne effect (people not buying Model S to see what the Model X might have in store), they're heavily ramping up production and so current demand may not be enough, it only applies to the Model S for new sales and not Model X reservations, and it's something Musk has done many times before. A similar sort of referral story helped explode Paypal in growth, and--something most people don't even know about--this is the third such Tesla referral program done since their inception.
...He has promised to ease up on the Model 3 so this might be his last chance until the new Roadster. And, truth be told, the X is more his baby than the S, so he would tinker even more. And don’t we all want a perfect Model X?

So, what do we all think?


What about a Tesla truck after the Model 3? I think we really need a 100% electric truck, maybe even with a 450 mile range. The new Roadster can come after the truck :smile:.
Personally I've simply assumed the referral program is more evidence of what many have suspected all along: That demand simply isn't what Tesla is making it out to be.
Tesla used to be production constrained. Now they have a second production line those days are over and that second line needs to be filled with cars. The second line can not be filled with Model X orders just yet, so Model S orders are the only way to go hence the october 30th deadline on this promotion eh sorry experiment.
As evidenced by the late opening of the x configurator (I believe musk said by July?), there were unanticipated delays with the x production. The bigger problem being that musk had counted on significant x production to reach the 55k total sales goal for this year that he reported. So, he had to bump up s sales to make up the slack otherwise the company and stock price would have taken a hit. I believe that this is also why the program ends End of October. Orders placed by then will very likely be delivered by year's end and help with 2015 numbers.
and stock price would have taken a hit.
I honestly don't think EM makes choices based on the stock price, only the health of the company. Which sadly are two different things thanks to the absurd secondary market system we use now where stock price is changed by shorts and futures and options instead of the company's actual output and profit. I listened to a radio program a few years ago (NPR) about how oil prices are based on these markets and virtually nothing about the price has anything to do with oil output, oil supply, or oil prospects. It's all @#$% markets manipulating everything.


I truly believe Elon makes decisions he feels are best for the longevity of Tesla, the best product for the customers, and not pumping the stock up.
Of course, but if all we have is reservations, and sales aren't available, that's the only data points we have.

Cue somebody to suggest that Tesla might be leaving gaps in the sequence of reservations numbers to artificially inflate the demand picture and maintain the stock price but they forgot to change the website which is why it says new orders for Model X available early 2016 even though Eds was right when he said that there'd only be 100 cars produced this year and the reason there's no launch date is that then the real demand would become apparent and everyone will see that 90% of the reservations were cancelled and suppliers won't make parts in such small numbers which is why senior management resigned and the company needs to introduce fees for Supercharging because they spent all their cash on Model X which nobody wants but has really cool laser lights under the body that change color as the car accelerates just like Audi although that might be illegal but is all perfectly plausible....

Oh look, a squirrel! ;-)