Tesla Model 3, S, X February 2019 U.S. Sales: $35,000 Disruptor Coming

from left: Tesla Model S, Tesla Model 3 and Tesla Model X

MAR 1 2019 BY ERIC LOVEDAY 113

Tesla Model 3 U.S. sales soft as automaker invades Europe and China.

The expected result of shifting to overseas is seen in our estimates, but don’t think for a second that demand for the Model 3 has fallen. Yesterday’s $35,000 base Model 3 announcement will shift the demand wave way upwards in the coming months.

In fact, the introduction of the $35,000 Model 3 will disrupt all markets in the coming months. Additionally, we believe the cheapest Model 3 will begin to steal would-be sales from vehicles like the Chevy Bolt, Nissan LEAF e-PlusHyundai Kona Electric and Kia Niro EV.

So, while the focus now may be on expected declining U.S. sales, the future for the Model 3 looks exceptionally bright. In fact, it’s never looked brighter than right now.

Tesla has stated that virtually all current production of the Model 3 would be focused on Europe and China, which is reflected in our figures. Aside from an extremely limited number of new builds, Tesla was mostly left with just inventory Model 3s for the U.S. market.

Categories: Sales, Tesla

Tags: , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

113 Comments on "Tesla Model 3, S, X February 2019 U.S. Sales: $35,000 Disruptor Coming"

newest oldest most voted

It’s obvious why they had to release the base. There were just not enough buyers of the higher trims. Now while they flood the market with the base they need to get the Y reservation list going.

Why would anyone put down a reservation for the Y?

It’s obvious why. You want to get it on hand faster than anybody else, so you can make your car review first and publish it on Youtube. Other than that, there is no consumer reasonable reason to get the earlier production model. As production improves, the quality goes up, so it’s better to postpone the purchase.

Maybe not written with proper tact but vlad is right when it comes to better build quality later than sooner with vehicles

Because they want to buy one, just a guess.

Exactly. (Duh!)

If they have $1,000 that they can afford to part with by giving Tesla an interest free loan, to show there is demand for long range EV’s. if they do the exact same plan of accepting deposits for a car that won’t come out for 2 years, sell the premium versions even to non-reservation holders, I think they’ll only get 25% of the pre-orders they got for the Model 3. However, the crossover/ SUV market is much larger in the US, so their could be pent up demand for an affordable, long range EV, with a fast charger network. other manufacturers have the affordable and long range, but a weak charging infrastructure. this will make the model Y the most compelling long range EV in its class, unless electrify america or others can rival the supercharger network before 2021, which seems unlikely at this time, but we’ll have 2 years to see. I’d still expect 100k reservations in the first month if Tesla does it the same way.

“I think they’ll only get 25% of the pre-orders they got for the Model 3.”

Then prepare to be very surprised.
🙂 🙂 🙂

I think Tesla will change the reservation program for Model Y:
– The wait won’t be nearly as long
– They’ll actually guarantee some sort of a place in line
– They’ll limit the number of reservations in each region
– Cost will be much higher, e.g. $5k

Your guesses are interesting. The 1st one is obvious, but they go downhill from there.

Only prediction I’m almost positive will happen is your last one dogggyd…a deposit of at least $5k. I think Tesla learned their lesson with the m3 n will not seek only mass numbers of mY reservation holders but higher quality, more likely to buy reservation holders at a $5 or even $10k deposit amount.
Your other predicted changes will be then taken care of with the higher deposit or at least not as important.

$2,000 Model Y Reservations is my guess! $5,000 is Early Model S & Model X Territory.

1. Probably
2. No way
3. Absurd
4. Not likely

Exactly. Fool me twice…..

Our reservation made it possible for me order with all the other masses when they opened it up completely In June of last year. Ie, there was no advantage to it. I’ll keep my $1000 this time……

Simply not true. You went to the head of the line when you were able to order the car, ahead of all those without a Reservation.

You may be right there.

Not quite. Tesla certainly gave the impression when announcing the reservation system that it would maintain people’s place in line.
It didn’t: People who ordered years later later but were willing to spring for more expensive variants got to jump the queue, just like celebrities at fashionable clubs. This was not disclosed in advance.

Why?

Uh… for the same reason that ~455,000 people (and counting) put down a reservation on the Model 3?

How many of those 455,000 people do you think are still in line? Before you answer, please consider that ANY Model 3 version that you order today (without a reservation) will come with an estimated delivery for later this month – that is what I am seeing on Tesla’s website.

And, Tesla Still has my Model 3 Reservation $1,000, as I have not yet sent in my confirmation Order! Also, Tesla have not yet Announced that it is certified for Towing! So, there is that!

The Website is likely wrong. but you never know order it and let us know if you get it that soon without reservation, I am truly curious!

So you can get the early version of Model Y. You’ll get it 6 months early and see that the later versions are better and immediately regret why you put down $1000 for a reservation.

Being based on the Model 3 platform, the initial quality should be better than the early Model 3’s. Still will be a few issues.

The parts that will be shared – drivetrain, dash, steering and suspension, small motors for windows and latches, etc. have not really caused problems on the Model 3.

Good question, actually. I suppose the advantage is that you get the first production – which will almost certainly be the higher margin, loaded up models. If you want the standard range base model only, there apparently is no need to get a place in line with a reservation.

I had a reservation for Model 3, and got it refunded a year ago in February, 2018. And yet, I can now go in and order the base model TODAY with an estimated March delivery in ‘2 to 4 weeks’ according to the Tesla website. If I had waited in line overnight three years ago to get an early reservation, I would still not be able to get the base model any earlier than a March, 2019 delivery.

What happened to the 400,000+ reservation holders in line? I know many have bought Model 3s already, but shouldn’t there still be a couple hundred thousand in line ahead of me? If yes, how the heck can I get my car delivered this month?

I think the answer is obvious. They were part of a mob lining up to see a rock concert, not serious car buyers. Serious buyers either understood the risks involved in buying a new product and took it already, or decided on another vehicle to meet their current needs, in either case they are already vehicle owners. Most people buy a car when they need one, not when they want one.

On the call Musk said orders from reservation holders would be first in line. He said SR orders without a reservation will probably be delivered by the June 30 tax credit stepdown. Sounds like he’s expecting a flood of orders.If so, the estimated delivery time should change in the next couple of days.

As for 450k, after almost 3 years how many were standing by with 40k available to make a major purchase at the drop of a tweet? Also, a lot of those are overseas who still can’t order SR.

The Seats are “LOW” in the Model 3! (Just ask my Wife!)

Low seats! Wife will not like that. Lower than a Toyota RAV?

Huh? Why did just 12,000 Reservations happen for the Model S, versus 20,000 Reservations for the Model X?

They still had plenty of buyers for higher trims from Europe and other places.

Strictly talking about US. Overseas they are a bit restricted by shipping.

More FUD time. Of course, there’s plenty of buyers for the higher trims! Tesla always prioritizes international destinations early in the quarter so that the sales numbers can be counted by the end of the same quarter. Tesla domestic sales are always highest at the end of each quarter for that very reason.

Tesla will deliver a combined total of more than 250,000 EV’s (Model S, Model X and Model 3) in the US in 2019.

That should be more like 350,000 total sales in 2019.

Total sales of Tesla’s will be 500,000

@ Ron M

Not in 2019.

Extremely unlikely. Tesla has only one assembly plant, and despite Elon’s overly optimistic goals, they won’t be producing any cars on any assembly line at the Shanghai Gigafactory in 2019. That will have to wait until 2020.

I will be very, very surprised if Tesla’s total sales in 2019 exceed 400,000.

To the contrary, quite likely. If you go to the quite reliable Bloomberg Model 3 Production Tracker you will see they have produced about 53,000 in Jan and Feb. That’s about 900 per day. I think it’s reasonable to estimate they will average about 1000 per day over the year. Then you have 365,000 Model 3. At to that Models S and X with about 100,000, and you’re at 465,000. That’s not very far from 500,000.

Perhaps you mean total sales, EVER?

Benz was talking about 250k in the US. CPO are you saying 350k sales in the US? That is crazy talk. I would love to see it happen, but the US isn’t going to be getting that many 3’s while Europe and China are still buying optioned up 3’s.

@ ziv

That’s correct.

@ CPO

You mean global annual total?

Agree, 350,000 is a reasonable number. They are near 6000 a week now. Times 52 weeks is 312,000 minus a few weeks downtime, say 250,000 for Model 3. S and X seem to be around 100,000/year combined, so a total of 350,000. If they can ramp up production a bit, 400,000 is possible.

Unlikely. I know what Musk said, but Musk says lots of things. Official guidance is 360-400k, of which roughly half would be US.

They’re sandbagging

Elon/Tesla, sandbagging?
LOL!
They usually overpromise and underdeliver, but they always deliver the goods eventually so it is just one of their quirks.

This year their goals were very conservative.

@ Common Sense

“This year their goals were very conservative.”

Interesting thought

What do you think that the global annual total will be in 2019?

500k

@ Common Sense

“500k”

In order to achieve that combined annual global total of “500k” Tesla will have to produce:

– at least 400,000 units of the Tesla Model 3 (that’s an flat average of 8,000 units of the Tesla Model 3 per week during the whole year). That’s very unlikely, but not totally impossible.

– a combined annual global total of 100,000 of the Tesla Model S and the Tesla Model X. Tesla did practically achieve that target in 2018.

Your screen name is meant to be taken ironically, then? 😉

@ Common Sense

No, they are not sandbagging.

They are already making 9,000 cars a week.

What does that even mean ?. You Americans and your penchant for making such wonderful, strange, simple and very effective changes to standard English.

Not sarcasm, just an observation so please don’t SHOUT at me too loudly.

Sandbagging is when you place sandbags in your car so that it is slower in the first couple of races. Then you take a lot of bets, remove the sandbags, and win the next race.

Well I never. Thank you, how very common sense when I think about it. /s

@ Doggy

At least 250,000 of the global annual total will be delivered in the US.

Disruptor?
Not here it won’t be.
Like all other RHD countries we have yet to see even an old priced RHD Model 3.

If Tesla isn’t going to make a profit this quarter it seems strange that they have not even started selling AWD/Long Range Model 3’s which AFAIK will make more profit than a $35K car…
but hey, what to I know apart from a really, really frustrated Model S P65 owner who I met at a fast charger earlier today. He’s had a day 1 reservation on a Model 3 and will soon pass the 3 year wait. He was not a happy camper.

He’ll get his Model 3 a lot later than early reservation holders in other countries, but he’ll also pay a lot less.

Exactly – two thumbs up for those reasons. I’m an April 2016 RHD reservation holder and I’m feeling fine. They always always said mid-2019 after US, China and Europe. At least now the SR version exists.

Besides – what exactly has this unhappy camper missed out on? A thousand bucks? The chance to buy a Kona? There is no better car yet than the Model 3, even since 2016!

Tesla has so much demand they can’t possibly satisfy it all. In other words, Tesla is crying all the way to the bank!

Not so great for those on a waiting list, but for Tesla such demand is absolutely fantastic!
🙂 🙂 🙂

Kenneth Bokor (EV Revolution Show - YouTube)
Eric, love your reporting and super respect your website, as I go to it as a source for content and industry news daily. Yes Tesla and the Model 3 will continue to sell very well and grow in sales. However, I don’t fully agree with your “take sales away from others” comments. Many fail to think how big the EV market opportunity is. With only 2% global penetration, that leaves 98% of the market to go after. Think Tesla can fulfill deliveries to this market size? Even taking away pickup/light truck sales out of the consumer transportation equation, the market opportunity is still huge and more than Tesla could ever hope to build in a year. So while Model 3 numbers will go thru the roof, I don’t think other manufacturers numbers will go down – only from lack of product availability and production constraints that will impact some of the other guys (Kona EV, Niro EV, e-Tron, MQC, etc.). And they are pretty well starting at zero so anything on the positive side for them is growth. Players like Nissan and GM are quite content in continuing on with the decent sales they do and will continue to add… Read more »

The EV market is doubling every two years, so any new EV sales are (for the most part) taking sales away from ICE. On the other hand at 35k the Model 3 is a much better value proposition then the current EV competition, so it is quite possible that sales of other EVs could decline.
Just look at what happened to the Volt or the I3. They suffered sales declines despite being in a market that doubles every other year.

How fast are non-Tesla BEV sales (not counting China) growing YoY? I don’t know, but I would bet dollars to doughnuts they aren’t doubling every two years.

Why would you exclude China?

Because China has the largest population and the China government requires 10% of cars sold to be EV.
I would hope this administration would support EV’s and the American auto industry in general to make the transition to EV’s and renewable energy.
That’s clearly not going to happen

CS, as Ron noted, China has BEV requirements that will shape their plug in adoption artificially. Though they are not a pure command economy any longer, they still have some aspects of it. That makes them the 400 pound gorilla when you look at BEV sales. If you include them, you make every other nations contributions look minor, which makes it harder to see how the US is doing, or Europe, or Japan.
I want China to adopt BEVs in a big way, but I don’t want to look at their figures on every comparison due to their market size with 1.3Bn people masking the progress, or lack thereof, in other smaller countries.

“The EV market is doubling every two years.” The funny thing is, Tesla’s market has been averaging about doubling every year, which is why that have such good EV market share right now. They’ve pretty much always been constrained by production limits. It will be interesting to see how the next few years turn out.

I am hoping that the rest of the pack start to deliver 200+ mile AER BEV’s under $50k soon. It would be great to see Tesla having to compete with the new BEV’s because up until now, Tesla has been the long pole in the tent. Getting a couple more good BEV’s on the market in all 50 states, Canada, Europe, Japan, Korea and Australia would be huge!

Actually, Tesla’s market has been increasing at ~50% per year, except for the spectacular increase of… what was it, 127%? …last year. That won’t be repeated.

GM didn’t take the Volt out of production because sales were declining; they took it out of production because they weren’t making enough unit profit on each sale.

For the same reason, GM will take the Bolt EV out of production once they start making and selling a BEV that’s built from the ground up to be a volume seller, as the Model 3 is.

I don’t agree with your reason why GM took the Volt off the market. The Volt was a small sedan in a market were sedans aren’t selling that well. And on top of that it was expensive because it was a plug-in hybrid. So as a buyer could get a highly optioned Equinox, a Traverse, 2 Trax, etc… for the same price. What do you think most people that don’t care what an EV is is going to do? For people that do care the Bolt is there as a place holder. I don’t think it’s going to go away, but I bet it’s going to change to more of a true CUV in the future.

And GM knows PHEV isn’t going to compete as well as full electric.

Its a neat idea, but what % of “Mid size sedan” sales were tesla model 3? There is not a huge amount they can go up without bumping into the aforementioned EV competitors. They will continue to steal from ICE, but really, why buy a Bolt now when the model 3 is cooler, faster, and similarly priced?

Because they are only similarly priced on paper – not in transaction price. Also, you can lease a Bolt and the Bolt has more utility.

The Bolt Offers Towing, then? (Something yet to arrive from Tesla, for Model 3!)

Well said, Kenneth.

Unfortunately, it’s typical for journalists to write as if there is a life-and-death struggle in any market competition; they are taught to write a “story” instead of just reporting the facts, and a story requires a conflict.

But we EV advocates should learn to discount the “spin” that journalists put on the market, and make this our mantra:

Selling electric cars is not a zero-sum game!

There is room in the market for plenty of compelling EVs, certainly far more than are currently available! The more, the merrier.
🙂 🙂 🙂

We need all OEM’s to fully commit to an all EV future and get serious about selling large percentages of zero emission vehicles. I respect your openness to buy a Leaf and champion non-Tesla’s. But GM for example bragged about the Bolt beating the Model 3 to production and starting sales in Tesla’s back yard for the publicity. They should be the clear market leader and be selling millions by now, right? Or was it a CARB play, a greenwashing statement to “Pay no attention to that little California startup” like I suspect? Are they pushing the state of Michigan to stop discriminating against Tesla with draconian dealership only laws? Are they securing massive battery contracts? Are they building out charging infrastructure? (To be fair the only other non=Tesla OEM that is doing so was actually court ordered to.) I’m still not convinced Ford and GM will survive the next decade (without massive govt bailouts). Nissan is doing OK but need to sell a lot more than they do. The Germans look like they want to pivot but frankly don’t look like they really can due to legacy ICE commitment. Real world performance of their “Tesla killers” show just how… Read more »

*grabs popcorn*

*walks backwards through some bushes*

GROWTH STORY!

Now that the November election is over gas prices are going up and this is before May the typical time for gasoline to go up. It wouldn’t surprise me if we see $3.00 average gasoline prices this year.
Good news for EV’s.

The problem is that average gas prices haven’t risen n stayed higher in over a decade. We had gas prices of over $4.50 for over six months in ‘07, ‘08. Hybrids, especially the Prius were hot commodities back then.
Even with a recent significant bump in the state gas tax, CA is still well under $4/gallon. An increase in the federal gas tax is looong overdue. I hope and will work diligently as a citizen that votes n campaigns to bring a federal infrastructure tax on all fossil fuel use starting early next decade to help raise gas prices to at least $5/gallon average nationwide nlt 2025.
If that happens the plug in, especially bev, converts will be in the tens of millions in the USA.

If $5/gallon happens that fast, the economy will tank. You do realize that all these little delivery trucks running to your pharmacy and grocery run on gas and diesel, right? Can you say $5 eggs?

Most everyone that wants a T3 and could afford the >$40k price before $7500 fed credit already has one. Sure, the headline-grabbing release of a $35k super base spec (in any color you like, as long as it’s black…and with a low-rent interior and questionable wheel design) will goose sales a bit but we’re still talking about a $30k+ car that most people aren’t interested in learning how to live with i.e. life without the comfortable security of gas stations everywhere.
Tesla timed the halving of the $7.5k tax credit very well.
A $35k model Y will be more of a game changer than the $35k T3.

The wheels are standard on all Model 3s. There’s only 1 upgrade option, and that also means bigger rims/lower profile tires. The Aero wheels are doing well for most people, and quite a few take the aero covers off, since the rims look pretty cool without the covers.

“In fact, the introduction of the $35,000 Model 3 will disrupt all markets in the coming months. Additionally, we believe the cheapest Model 3 will begin to steal would-be sales from vehicles like the Chevy Bolt, Nissan LEAF e-Plus, Hyundai Kona Electric and Kia Niro EV.”

This is a comparison of an all-electric sedan that should steal sales from models like the Camry Hybrid, the Corolla Hybrid, Kia Optima PHEV, Hyundai Sonata PHEV, or BMW 330e instead of 5-door hatchbacks. I am still trying to figure out why people who want a crossover would suddenly want a sedan. A $38K Model Y crossover with 240+ miles of range will steal sales from the Chevy Bolt, Nissan LEAF e-Plus, Hyundai Kona Electric and Kia Niro EV!

Nobody knows.

Well, Tesla can deliver a Model Y to you, in places where the Chevy Bolt EV has No Inventory, at their “Dealers!”

People go to crossover for the cargo space. Tesla’s all-electric sedans, by ditching the bulky ICE and transmission, offer more cargo space than ICE sedans, more like that of an ICE crossover or small SUV:
http://tesla.dauger.com/cargo.html

True, no doubt if they had higher priced orders they would of delivered them first in the US.

I would have to agree. At the same time at 35k the market is five times bigger so they should be fine as long as they are making money at that price.

I am still totally floored by this release of the $35K base model. This is amazing. I suspected that they were going to mainly shift focus to Europe and other markets that still haven’t had access to ANY Model 3 cars yet and keep pushing high-end models.

And closing stores to save money in order to reduce the car prices by going fully online? So ballsy. I love it.

I own a Model 3 ,absolutely love it, any reservation holder on edge of ordering now or few weeks later, I would order soon, Tesla is known to adjust pricing for options very frequently, If demand shoots up in short term some options pricing will go up, happened to me last year when I ordered.

Tesla fans all over the world are celebrating!

All over the world, everybody got the word
Everybody everywhere is gonna feel tonight

Everybody walkin’ down the street
Everybody movin’ to the beat
They’re gonna get hot down in the U.S.A
(New York, Detroit, L.A.)

We’re gonna take a trip across the sea, everybody come along with me
We’re gonna hit the night down in gay Paree
(C’est la vie, having your cup of tea)

All over the world, everybody got the word
Everybody everywhere is gonna feel tonight

London, Hamburg, Paris, Rome, Rio, Hong Kong, Tokyo
L.A., New York, Amsterdam, Monte Carlo, Shard End and

All over the world, everybody got the word
Everybody everywhere is gonna feel tonight

Everybody all around the world
Gotta tell you what I just heard
Everybody walkin’ down the street
I know a place where we all can meet
Everybody gonna have a good time
Everybody will shine till the daylight

* * * * *

Well… those Tesla fans in London and Hong Kong are gonna have to wait a bit longer for the Model 3. 🙂

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wh3i3vWgPyk

They are running leaner and leaner. It worries me. I will be quite interested in Q1 earnings reports. US sales obviously isn’t telling the whole story, esp. as fleets of cargo ships are sending their vehicles onto distant shores.

Musk already said that they will report a loss in Q1.

It’s great that the TM3 is selling for $35,000.
I’m concerned though with the pickup truck. I think Tesla should have a survey to detrimine now many people would purchase an electric pickup truck and if they would put a deposit on it when there ready to take orders.
There needs to be a way to verify the person’s on the survey.
People who have previously purchased an EV seem likely to be telling the truth.
People who canceled an order or took delivery and returned an EV may only want to see Tesla fail.
I suspect it’s going to be very difficult for an EV to enter the Pickup truck market.
People who are say they want a pickup truck may simply want Tesla to fail.
Might be better to see how Rivian does with there pickup. Tesla doesn’t have to be the leader in every model EV.

When Tesla does a pickup it would be nice to see them also do a compact or midsize pickup as well as a full size. Maybe even something the lines of the Honda Ridgeline but on the Model 3/Model Y platform. This size truck I think would serve a market that is more ready for an EV pickup and it could be priced more competitively than a full size truck.

I don’t know current pickup truck owners don’t seem to care about Climate Change and I wouldn’t be surprised if the majority weren’t Climate Change deniers. It also wouldn’t be a surprise if the Koch Brothers aren’t behind a campaign to harm the EV business. That’s where the Tesla haters come from. Because it’s the most successful. If it fell they hope to set back EV’s 20 years.

Sure but most of those guys seem to drive the jacked up full size trucks rather than the mid-size and compact trucks. The folks with those trucks are using them to move things around rather than for towing, I think that segment is a better fit for EVs than the full size models, at least a better fit at a lower price point.

Think of the target audience for the Ridgeline, I haven’t seen videos of coal rolling (yes I know only diesels can do that), charger ICEing Honda Ridgeline drivers. I think the folks Honda targets for the Ridgeline would be very interested in an EV midsize or smaller pickup. There are a lot of us out there that have a need for a truck for utilitarian purposes that don’t need the over sized monstrosities that the modern pickup has become. I mean the mid-size pickups are now practically as big as full size trucks were a generation or two ago.

There are a ton of suburban cowboys out there (4-door short beds, mostly), and I’ll bet that many would buy an EV pickup of generous interior, aggressive exterior, and good range.

Model 3 is definitely priced to move now, but who is going to move them with most stores closing down? Can you really sell large numbers of a big ticket items like cars from pictures on the internet? Closing down those stores Tesla spent so much money and effort to build may be a way to get those low prices but I’m not cheering about those low prices until I have seen that this new all online sales business model actually works. Until then I’m not too sure anymore about this “disruptor coming” thing.

True, but the other concern is the states like Michigan and New Jersey that severely limit, or block entirely, Tesla stores. The ongoing lawsuits in several states, plus lobbing $$, is probably dragging Tesla’s bottom line and taking up mental resources of Musk and others.

Moving actual sales to online only is a masterstroke – essentially all of those ongoing lawsuits and lobbying efforts are now moot. Tesla galleries are perfectly legal under all of the current laws, where they don’t sell cars, just provide information and sell T-shirts and hats.

Here’s a fact tat no one seems to bring up. Most of the general public who know of the Model 3 but do not follow it as closely as many on these forums STILL believe there is a 2+ year wait for a Model 3 if you don’t have a reservation. I had 3 people come to me today alone an say virtually the same thing — did you hear the $35k Model 3 is coming out…..boy I’d love to get one I just don’t want to wait 2 years for it…..

I think Tesla needs to better communicate that you can get one fairly quickly (maybe too late already tho…. as I bet they just got totally SLAMMED with orders…..)

The M3 is the right car at the right time marketwise. Any young person with an income now will desire the M3, tomorrow’s desired product at today’s doable price.
Then there’s all the EV and ICE owners who now want an EV truck or SUV. That’s a huge untapped market too.

Cant wait to see their capex for the future.

This great news came out just the NEXT DAY after the Volvo Polestar 2 wowed some people. Did Musk freak because some Model 3 orders got cancelled? Maybe its just a coincidence… but the timing is suspicious. My best guess, is that superstar Musk wanted to keep the order book full, even if they have to sell a stripped base model at cost (but most will buy autopilot, which is nearly pure profit now). Tesla did just suck all the air out of the room. Several I knew who didn’t have a Tesla and wanted one, is now scraping up a deposit.

The amount of effort and planning that would have gone into all of these changes that they have made, would have taken some time to brainstorm and develop… I think that the Polestar 2 announcement timing was just bad luck for Polestar, but did not force anyone’s hand at Tesla. Besides, Tesla is producing more Model 3s in a quarter than Polestar plans to produce in a year. That’s not a serious threat.

I hope this works to enhance the numbers of model 3’s on the road, but I’m a bit nervous about closing all those showrooms. As a friend, who just sat in a model 3 in a showroom for the first time, said. Actually sitting in one and talking to a sales person is the best way to sell one on Tesla. Not being able to see one in person and even test drive one will work fine for some people, but perhaps not for the masses who only distantly know much about Tesla. Also, while I’m at it, very disappointed that I’ll have to pay an extra $3k over the former cost of enhanced auto pilot to get the features that were in the former enhanced auto pilot. That negates any savings for me.

Tesla could,”Survey” existing Model 3 Owners, and see if they want to be refered to folks that want Test Drives!

I would not be surprised if the service centers would have some former salespeople offering test drives with vehicles in the loaner stock.