Reality Check: Tesla Model 3 Sales are Bad

Despite my colleagues’ assertions over at Cleantechnica and on these very pages, Tesla’s model 3 is not “whooping gasmobile a**“. In fact, with fewer than 3900 sales in April, Tesla is selling less than half of its projected 2000 Model 3s per week — and that’s super bad.

The Model 3 is supposed to be Tesla’s golden goose. Not just the product that brings Tesla- finally!- into profitability, but the one that brings the electric car to the masses. The thing is, to achieve those goals the Model 3 needs to see dramatic sales and delivery growth month over month, but its sales were flat from March to April. Worse, its sales were flat at fewer than 1,000 units per week- or half of Tesla’s capacity goal.

Flat sales and factories operating at half capacity aren’t going to pave the way to profitability. Sales of less than 4,000 units in a month won’t make a car “mainstream”, either- especially when you consider that Ford sold 73,104 F series pickups in the same month of April.

The Model 3 isn’t even the most mainstream EV! There have been nearly three times as many Chevy Bolts sold as Model 3s (29,526 vs. 13,827), and Chevy doesn’t have the benefit of a cult-minded hype factory.

Surely, however, the Tesla fans will ignore both the sales data and the car’s lack of profitability, and keep pouring fuel onto the Tesla hype fire. Think I’m being pessimistic? This is from Zachary Shahan, at CleanTechnica, in a story published April 16th of this year.

If you assume Tesla makes its way up to 2,500/week in the second half of the month, that means over 9,000 Model 3s. If you get bullish and expect that Tesla will jump to 3,000/week in that time period, we’re talking perhaps 10,000 Tesla Model 3s in April.

Tesla failed to build 2,000 a week, but the “true believers” were projecting that the company would not only sort out its issues- but also increase output by 200% in just four weeks! That’s how you get a market cap higher than GM and Ford, people. And it’s nonsense.

When Tesla’s crash comes, it will be ugly- and Ol’ Musky’s fans today will be the Tucker conspiracy theorists of tomorrow. Or- I dunno. Maybe I’m wrong. We’ll see.

 

Source links throughout post.

 

Jo Borrás

I've been in the auto industry 1997, and write for a number of blogs in the IM network. You can also find me on Twitter, at my Volvo fansite, or chasing my kids around Oak Park, IL.