Tesla Model 3 Inventory Decreased In Final 2018 Sales Rush

JAN 1 2019 BY MARK KANE 24

Tesla Model 3 inventory decreased tremendously compared to summer

According to an anonymous source speaking to Electrek, Tesla Model 3 inventory decreased to just over 3,300 as of December 27. This was right as Tesla tried to deliver as many cars as possible before the year-end. That’s when the federal tax credit gets cut in half (to $3,750) on January 1, 2019 (today).

Having production and sales data of Model 3 for the previous quarter we can estimate. It appears as though in Q4 deliveries were higher than production by over 6,000.

Here is how it looks:

  • 2017 Q3 – 260 produced and 222 delivered, difference 38 (38 in deliveries)
  • 2017 Q4 – 2,425 produced and 1,542 delivered, difference 883 (921 in deliveries)
  • 2018 Q1 – 9,766 produced and 8,182 delivered, difference 1,584 (2,505 in deliveries)
  • 2018 Q2 – 28,578 produced and 18,449 delivered, difference 10,129 (12,634 in deliveries)
  • 2018 Q3 – 53,239 produced and 56,065 delivered, difference -2,826 (9,808 in deliveries)
  • 2018 Q4 – 3,300 in deliveries would translate into a difference of -6,500

Are there really only 3,300 Model 3 in inventory (in various stages of delivery or waiting for customers)? If so, Tesla probably sold every car that was possible to be sold.

The official Q4 results will be revealed soon.

Source: Reuters, Electrek

Categories: Tesla

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24 Comments on "Tesla Model 3 Inventory Decreased In Final 2018 Sales Rush"

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I’m pretty sure the 3,300 inventory was unsold new cars. In transit cars are above and beyond that. Even with improved logistics, I have to think they ended up with a few thousand in transit. No harm to the customer on those, since Tesla promised to make good on the 3750.

Who YEAH! Go Tesla! Good 2019 luck to the company!

I am dying to see the sales report, and it’s not due to hangover.

They played the tax credit game like Pearlman plays a Stradivarius.

Like Vlad plays Donald.

I’ll show my self out…

It’s not even the number of cars they sold that ultimately matters.
They can increase profit margin, around 40mil for every 1% increase.
If they somehow squeezed out a 3-5% increase in margin which is really hard, that’s 120-200mil increase in profit.

I can’t wait to hear the Q4 results. Certainly they ought to show a more substantial profit than in Q3 — but I don’t expect it to be nearly enough to indicate Tesla can generate the capital it needs to pay debt as it comes due AND continue to invest aggressively in further growth. I still believe they will raise yet more capital. To my mind it seems logical to do so given that the demand is there to keep increasing Model 3 volume, introduce the standard version, and soon launch Model Y as well.

It’ll be interesting to see the numbers and read various interpretations in the coming days.

Sure, they will raise capital when the scale-up plans for the Y become more firm and they can demonstrate to the investors the capital will be used frugally and profitably. I’m guessing mid-late 2019.

Making profits now gives them flexibility not to need to take out more loans sooner, on poorer terms. BTW, most of the upcoming bond repayments are debt acquired from the Solar City acquisition (which was a poor idea), not because of automotive operations.

Tesla has already said it is seeking investors in China to fund its Gigafactory 3 in Shanghai.

I don’t think there is any need to defend a claim that Tesla isn’t going to raise more funds, since we already know that’s not true. Perhaps it’s looking to sources beyond what it has used in the past, but clearly Tesla will continue to seek investor funding for continued expansions of its manufacturing.

Why “yet more” capital? Successful businesses that want to grow really fast cannot wait for profits to grow so big as to fully fund large investments, indeed it would be foolish to do so. It is not a sign of weakness. The sign of weakness would be to let shorters and FUDsters dictate Tesla’s investment strategy.
Go for growth. The world is at your feet right now. Won’t last forever!

It’s very likely that Tesla has delivered more EV’s in December 2018 than in the whole of 2014.

Got to hand it to IEV’s. good take on the numbers.
One of the sources you quote for this article painted a much darker picture. (Demand is falling cuz Tesla couldn’t sell all their cars.)

Having a few days of inventory hanging around doesn’t spell failure. But yes, the automaker has delivered well over 120,000 Model 3’s to the U.S. market. Many people are waiting for the base model and many reservation holders come from across the globe. There will come a point that sales remain somewhat flat, followed by a point where U.S. sales decline in favor of global sales. We saw the biggest spike in September and it’s leveled off since then. It will be interesting to see what happens over the course of the next several months. No matter what, however, haters and stock-shorters will continue to move the goal posts and if sales are flat or decreased they will predict imminent failure and immediate bankruptcy for Tesla. Even when some cars started going to Canada, which resulted in lower U.S. numbers, people flipped out. Wait until most Model 3s are going to Europe. Oh, what fun it is ….

Yeah, I wouldn’t be surprised to see lower quarterly or even annual Model 3 sales in the U.S. in 2019. But of course, a larger sales number worldwide.

And yes, we can be sure the serial Tesla bashers will continue to cherry-pick a few weekly, monthly, or quarterly U.S. sales figures to support their long worn out myth that demand for Tesla cars has dropped off a cliff. They say that literally every day over on Reeking Alpha; the only thing that changes is which particular cherry-picked numbers they use in their ever more absurd and outdated claims that Tesla is going to fail.

But just like the Flat Earthers, there comes a point at which no reasonable person is going to continue wasting time arguing with them.

Well said , in Europe where gas prices are eye watering compared to America we can’t wait . Just wonder why so many people say so many bad things about a product that is creating s buzz around the world . That product is made in the US . Luddites comes to mind

“One of the sources [said]… Demand is falling cuz Tesla couldn’t sell all their cars.”

Tesla detractors and bashers have been saying that since 2012, regarding the Model S. Some people are still saying the Earth is flat, too.

But why should we waste time arguing over a long-settled point? It’s easy to utterly and completely disprove the claim that demand for Tesla cars is falling:

Tesla’s global automobile sales totals:
2012: 2650
2013: 22,300
2014: 31,655 (+41.95%)
2015: 50,580 (+59.8%)
2016: 76,230 (+50.7%)
2017: 101,312 (+32.9%)

And 2018 sales will be up more than 100% over 2017!

Keep Going Tesla!

Waiting for the Sales Blast when they offer LEASING.

A call to tour local Tesla dealer reveal that they have unsold inventory on the last day of year. I wish it were not so, but Model 3 demand is softening.

So… the fact that there were at least a few demo and/or service loaner cars which had not found a buyer at the end of the year, “proves” that Model 3 demand is softening? With logic like that… don’t give up your day job!

Here’s a hint, Mr. Tesla Basher: Tesla service departments would have a hard time doing their job if they didn’t have any service loaners. So some few “inventory” cars would be necessary for Tesla to keep, even on December 31, even if it had people offering to buy them.

25,000 3 sales and 8,000 S and X sales would be a phenomenal month! That is the middle figure for 3 sales in the other article here on IEV’s. I hope that it happens and my money is on the Insideevs team when it comes to estimates.
But this brings me to another question, can Tesla beat this number for US sales in March when the credit is only $3750? My gut on that is “yes, relatively easily.” That is, if the inventory is there to support it, i.e. Europe doen’t get too much of it. Which means that June is relatively assured of beating it too. But what about in September when the credit is down to $1875? I am not completely sure that they will be able to sell 25,000 3’s in the US if the PUP is still in place. It should be gone by then but who knows?

“can Tesla beat this number for US sales in March”

Q1 US sales will be way down. If they lump almost all US Q1 sales into March they might get close to the December number. That’s not a very efficient way to run logistics, but it makes the numbers look better in the quarterly report.

“But this brings me to another question, can Tesla beat this number for US sales in March when the credit is only $3750?”

Doubtful. Auto sales are quite seasonal, even for Tesla, even though it doesn’t use “model years”. March isn’t one of the best months for auto sales, and with Model 3 sales, we can expect Tesla to concentrate on Europe and other overseas markets, where the initial demand for higher trim levels of the Model 3 have not been depleted, as they have here in the USA and Canada.

I’m not saying the end of the Federal tax credit won’t have any impact on Model 3 sales, but I think I’m safe in predicting that:

(1) it’s going to have far less impact than many fear, and

(2) in 2019 and 2020 (if not longer), Tesla will continue to be able to sell every single Model 3 that it can possibly make, worldwide.

“Tesla probably sold every car that was possible to be sold.”

Just like it does at the end of every year. Not to say that this article could apply just as well to last year; there was no deadline for customers to cash in on the full Federal tax credit last year.

But in many ways, this is just the latest verse in the same song.

And we have idiots posing as journalists over here in 🇦🇹 who write that the boom of the model 3 is over because they have 3000 unsold cars at the end of the year.
F*cking idiots, indeed.