Tesla will announce its third generation vehicle platform at its Investor Day event in March
Tesla's worth in the stock market plummeted to end 2022 and to start 2023; it posted lower-than-expected deliveries. There are no doubts that investors are uncertain, which may be why the company announced its first-ever Investor Day. The event will take place on March 1, 2023, and the company provided a few tidbits of what to expect, including the generation three platform.
Generation 3 Platform
Picking up where Elon Musk left the third quarter earnings call, Tesla is ready to announce plans for the next phase of the company's production. During the call in October, Musk said, "we don't want to talk exact dates, but this is the primary focus of our new vehicle development team, obviously. At this point, we've done the engineering for Cybertrucks and Semi. So, it's obviously what we're working on, which is the next-generation vehicle."
The CEO also revealed that the engineers were tasked with a two-for-one target, including cutting costs and production times. Musk added, "we're twice the output. And we do believe this can be done."
What's the Next Tesla Product?
During the Semi delivery event on December 1, 2022, there was a slide titled: Covering Major Forms of Terrestrial Transport. The slide included Models S, 3, X, Y, Semi, Cybertruck and Robotaxi. Robotaxi also appeared in the second quarter earnings report indicating that it was 'in development.'
However, there is speculation that the third generation could be the most affordable Tesla yet. The number most often heard is $25,000, which, if true, would be a game changer by removing the most significant barrier for many people who want to own an electric vehicle.
Musk said, "It will be smaller, to be clear. But it will, I think, certainly become, certainly exceed the production of all our other vehicles combined." That would be music to investors' ears.
Making things even more interesting, Tesla's Chief Designer, Franz von Holzhausen, was recently asked to name his favorite model. He responded, "my favorite one is the one that is coming. I can't talk about (it)." I speculated the sports car fan who grew up in the wedge era and had posters of Lamborghini Countachs on his wall must've been referring to the next Roadster. But von Holzhausen also talked about how cool it is to see Teslas everywhere; perhaps he is excited to see a more affordable Tesla hit the market.
According to the short news release Tesla sent out announcing Investor Day, the company will also discuss long-term expansion plans, capital allocation and other subjects. However, Tesla's earnings call is scheduled for January 25, and we will get more information, or yet another tease, of what is next for the company.
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Tesla's fourth quarter and 2022 earnings call with investors was mostly good news unless you were planning to drive a Cybertruck soon. While company executives eagerly jumped on every question asked by investors, there was a noticeable pause when a point-blank question was asked about Cybertruck's mid-year production date.
Elon Musk responded "um, we do expect production to start, I don't know, maybe sometime this summer. But I always like to try to downplay the start of production because the start of production is always very slow. It increases exponentially, but it's always very slow at first. So I wouldn't put too much thought in start of production."
Volume Production Next Year
If the millions of people with Cybertruck reservations were in attendance, you might have felt the air leave the room. The previous belief was mass production would start by the end of 2023. There may be some stainless-steel beauties on the road by then, but only a few. "It's kind of when does volume production actually happen, and that's next year," said Musk.
Perhaps sensing some disappointed buyers, Lars Moravy, Tesla's Vice President of Vehicle Engineering added, "(I'd) like just to emphasize on that, we've started installation of all the production equipment here in Giga Texas, castings, general assembly, body shops. We built all our beta vehicles, some more coming still in the next month, but as you said, the ramp will really come 2024."
The Cybertruck Will be Elon's Next Car
Cybertruck was originally announced in 2019 at the memorable event that included the unbreakable armor glass smashing. Musk was wearing the smashed glass Cybertruck t-shirt while taking questions from investors. While the wait continues, he is adamant that it will be worth it, "So it's an incredible product. I can't wait to drive it personally. It will be the car that I drive every day… it's just one of those products that only comes along once in a while, and it's really special."
The original release deadline was set for 2021. However, the production date has been delayed due to unforeseen circumstances, like a global pandemic. Nevertheless, it is a positive sign that beta vehicles have been produced. Images of what appears to be a Cybertruck were leaked a few months ago.
Recently, chief designer Franz von Holzhausen did confirm that the Cybertruck was ready for production, but it's a work in progress. Every Tesla beta product gets thoroughly examined and meticulously reviewed before the next step. But at least it's a step in the right direction.
Tesla set new records in production and deliveries while beating analyst expectations.
Tesla published their Q4 2022 and full-year financial results, setting new records in production and deliveries while beating analyst expectations. Tesla’s annual profit rose to $12.6 billion in 2022, from $5.5 billion in 2021. Annual revenue rose to $81.5 billion, from $53.8 billion the year prior. Tesla reported fourth-quarter revenue of $24.32 billion beating analysts' $24.07 billion estimate. The automaker also reported earnings per share of $1.19 beating analysts' $1.12 estimate.
Tesla’s stock rose more than 5% in after-hours trading following the earnings release and surged more than 10% the next day.
Tesla's Q4 2022 revenue set a new record for the company, up 59% from a year earlier. In addition to automotive revenue of $21.3 billion, Tesla recognized $324 million of deferred revenue from the company’s driver assistance systems.
FSD Beta Numbers
Tesla reported that 90 million miles have now been driven with FSD Beta, up from 58 million miles in the previous quarter. The company also confirmed that they have about 400,000 FSD Beta users in North America, a sizeable increase since the last report. With such a steep increase in miles driven and FSD Beta becoming widely available in North America, Tesla is making significant progress with its autonomous driving software.
In late 2022 and into this year, Tesla began cutting prices on its cars globally. Elon spoke about how recent price cuts have fueled a surge in demand for Tesla: “Thus far in January we’ve seen the strongest orders year-to-date than ever in our history. We’re currently seeing orders of almost twice the rate of production.” He added: “These price changes really make a difference for the average consumer.” Tesla acknowledges that average sales prices have to decrease over time because affordability is part of Tesla's mission to grow into a company that sells multiple millions of cars annually.
Price cuts will impact profitability, but margins should remain healthy, Tesla CFO Zach Kirkhorn affirmed. Tesla has wider operating margins than the industry average, which allows them to make such price cuts.
Elon issued an uncertain forecast for 2023, saying Tesla planned on 1.8 million vehicles for the year without specifying whether that was a target for production or deliveries. If the company were to deliver 1.8 million vehicles in 2023, that would result in 37% annual growth.
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