Things are looking as bright as a new penny for Tesla these days. Reviewers are raving about Model 3, the latest financial results were better than expected, and the stock is back on an upward trend. In a conference call with stock analysts, Elon Musk said that this was “maybe the best I’ve ever felt about Tesla.”
Naysayers have been speculating that many of the over 500,000 orders for Model 3 will be cancelled, but the fact is that they are still pouring in. “Since the handover event last week, we are averaging over 1,800 net Model 3 reservations per day,” said Tesla in its recent shareholders’ letter. “So to be more accurate, there have been 518,000 gross reservations for 3, and we have 455,000 net reservations,” Musk added during the earnings call. “But those cancellations occurred over the course of more than a year.”
The ordering process is proceeding as planned: “We opened the Model 3 configurator to the thousands of our employees with reservations so they could begin ordering their vehicles. Soon, non-employee customers will begin receiving invitations to order their cars in small groups based on when they placed their reservations, with existing Tesla owners receiving first priority. Deliveries to non-employees will begin in Q4.”
The first shipments will be the higher-priced Long Range Battery models, which start at $44,000. The Standard model should begin shipping in the US in November. Non-US markets will begin receiving Model 3 in “late 2018,” and right-hand-drive markets will have to wait until 2019.
Elon isn’t worried about reaching the company’s ludicrously ambitious production targets. “What people should absolutely have zero concern about – zero – is that Tesla will achieve a 10,000-unit production week by the end of next year,” he told the analysts.
Is the advent of the lower-priced Model 3 hurting sales of Models S and X? Not so far. While conceding that it’s “too early to draw strong conclusions,” Tesla said that the “weekly net order rate for these vehicles was about 15% higher than the Q2 average weekly order rate.”