Tesla makes their vehicles more affordable in regions around the world
Not a Tesla App
Tesla dropped prices on all models in several countries, which should not be surprising. It's unlikely it has anything to do with the company's plummeting value on the stock market, a perceived lower demand, or an effort to qualify for tax credits. Tesla's entire price drop game plan was forecast just a few days ago by a Tesla executive in China.
Tesla does not have a communications department. All the company information comes from its website, social media accounts or Elon Musk's Twitter account. That's why it was worth finding a translation of a rare interview a Tesla vice president gave to the media in China on January 9, 2023.
When Tesla Executives Speak, You Should Listen
Tao Lin spoke to reporters just days after Tesla dropped the prices in China. Her answers provided reasons behind the lower prices, not only in China but worldwide. "Some media said that we lowered the price because we couldn't sell anymore. I think it's really nonsense," Lin said. "I personally think that the price adjustment reflects our better planning for the supply chain in a sense, and what level the vehicle cost will be, and then we make such adjustments according to this estimate."
Lin then explained, "The price adjustment of a product is actually a forecast of the company's cost changes in the next period of time. The biggest difference between 2023 and last year is that the epidemic has basically passed. We believe that the supply chain has returned to normal to a large extent, and there will be no such unpredictable shortages of materials as in previous years, which brought cost uncertainty."
Tesla Supply Chain Certainty Indicated in Q3
During the third quarter earnings call, Musk spoke about supply chain issues that had hampered production during the pandemic. But he also discussed how the company had advanced in other areas and was optimistic about future production. "What we are seeing is practical improvements as we redesign the whole supply chain and all of the elements that go into a battery cell. We're figuring out dramatic efficiencies."
Zachary Kirkhorn, Tesla's Chief Financial Officer, answered a question about the Inflation Reduction Act during that same earnings call. There were not many details available at that time. Still, he stated, "it's difficult to fully determine the eligibility criteria, but we believe Tesla is very well-positioned to capture a significant share of that for solar storage and also electric vehicles."
Tesla's Transparency is the Problem
Some customers in China who bought a Tesla just before the price cut were furious. That's likely to be the case in other countries as well. However, consumers need to remember that Tesla is a direct sales model. How quickly everyone forgets auto dealers have been changing prices for decades.
Lin gave this example, "for a traditional car, everyone buys it at a different price at a dealer, so you don't really know whether the price you bought is the lowest or not, and you don't know what price other people are buying. Is it fair to consumers?"
Tesla has not only changed the automotive industry by making electric vehicles a viable product, but it also changed how people buy cars. "We adopted some relatively new concepts, such as the direct sales model, such as price adjustment strategies, and we hope to gradually make everyone feel that these concepts are feasible. Under the direct sales model, the prices are completely open and transparent, without discounts or price increases, and everyone is the same at the same time."
Price Reductions in the U.S.
We suspected these price cuts were coming as the EV tax credit in the US listed all Model 3s and Model Ys as qualifying for the tax credit. All variations of the Model Y now qualify for the $7,500 tax credit in the US.
The price cuts also affect many countries around the world such as Spain, France and Portugal. Although the reduced pricing of the Model S and Model X appears to be limited.
Below is a list of the new and previous prices of all Teslas models in the US and the percentage changed.
Model 3 RWD
Model 3 Performance
Model Y Long Range
Model Y Performance
Model S Plaid
Model X Plaid
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Tesla reveals how many miles have been driven on FSD Beta as of January 2023
Tesla's Full Self Driving (FSD) technology took a giant leap forward in distributing FSD Beta to 400,000 customers in North America. It is a significant milestone for the development of autonomous driving and highlights Tesla's commitment to bringing this cutting-edge technology to the masses. A new version, v11.3 could roll out any day.
Number of Testers Over Time
Tesla made FSD Beta public a little more than two years ago, around October 2020. It was initially only made available to less than a handful of testers, but that pool grew to about 1,000 users later that year.
Since then Tesla has gradually increased the number of testers. The ramp from the initial 1,000 testers took some time, but by October 2021 Tesla had opened it up further through its Safety Score program. By January 2022, it was available to about 60,000 owners.
In March of 2022, Tesla expanded FSD Beta to Canada, gradually adding additional testers, and eventually increasing the number of testers across the U.S. and Canada to 160,000 in September.
Tesla announced this December that the number of testers had grown to 285,000 and recently said this January that it's now accessible to 400,000 Tesla owners.
FSD Beta Expansion and Milestones
Opened to select testers
~ 1,000 added
Start of expansion through Safety Score
Available to 60,000 testers
Expansion to Canada
Available to 160,000 testers
Available to 285,000 testers
Access given to 400,000 owners
The deployment of FSD Beta to such a large number of customers will provide an unprecedented level of testing and feedback, allowing Tesla to refine the technology and bring it to an even higher level of reliability and safety. Furthermore, with over 90 million miles driven on FSD outside of highways, the published data shows a clear improvement in safety statistics, demonstrating the potential for autonomous driving to revolutionize the way we travel.
This increased testing level will help improve the technology even further, as the system can learn from a broader range of driving scenarios and road conditions.
FSD Will Make the Roads Safer
The safety benefits of Full Self Driving technology will be a major selling point for Tesla and one of the primary reasons for its rapid growth. Using cameras and other advanced technologies, FSD can monitor the road and make real-time adjustments to ensure the vehicle operates safely and efficiently. As a result, this technology reduces the likelihood of accidents and provides passengers with a safer, more comfortable driving experience.
Overall, making FSD Beta available to 400,000 customers represents a major step forward for Tesla and the entire autonomous driving industry. It's now available to all customers who have purchased or subscribed to FSD in the U.S. and Canada. The next big expansion is expected to be in Europe sometime this year.
With its focus on safety and reliability, Tesla is leading the way toward a future where driving is fully autonomous, and accidents are a thing of the past. As technology continues to evolve, we can expect to see even more impressive advances in the coming years, bringing us closer to a world where autonomous vehicles are a common sight on our roads.
The Ctrl-Bar adds physical buttons to the Model 3/Y
Tesla's minimalistic interior design is both loved and hated. Much loathing is due to the lack of physical buttons drivers are so used to having at their fingertips to control heat, music and everything else in the cabin. The sleek look is attractive, but for some it can fall short in easy accessibility while driving.
That's where a new product comes into play: Ctrl-Bar. Created by Øyvind Husby of Oslo, Norway, Ctrl-Bar has nearly 300 backers on the crowdfunding website Indiegogo and has beat its target funding goal by more than 280 percent. The objective is to provide a tactile, programmable solution to Tesla's minimalistic interior design.
How It Works
Ctrl-Bar is a device that attaches securely to the bottom of the Model 3 and Model Y screen and offers a quick-access, tactile response that physical buttons can only achieve. The premium black glass finish blends seamlessly with the screen bezel, providing a smooth look. It connects to a smartphone using Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and gets power from a hidden USB cable connected to the rear center console USB port. The app runs in the background, capturing only the data needed to run the services and prioritizing privacy. In addition, the Ctrl-Bar screen shows real-time changes, so there is no latency when changing temperatures or other functions. After less than a second, the device will send the command to your vehicle.
The Scrolls, Buttons and Extras
The Ctrl-Bar has two scroll wheels with tactile indents to control the cabin temperature, one for the driver and the passenger. In addition, four push buttons are in the middle of the wheels to provide easy access to programmable shortcuts, such as seat heaters, defrost mode, dog mode, and more. All changes made on the Ctrl-Bar are reflected on the center screen, offering a unified experience.
In addition to controlling essential functions, Ctrl-Bar also provides ambient LED lighting. The device has a series of powerful LEDs that illuminate the center console and front footwells. Users can scroll through assorted color and brightness options to find the perfect lighting for their drive. For an additional subscription, Ctrl-Bar offers speed trap warnings. The device checks for nearby fixed speed traps and visually alerts the driver when they are approaching. If the driver exceeds the speed limit, Ctrl-Bar will give an audible warning reminding them to slow down.
The Ctrl-Bar adds physical buttons to the Model 3/Y
Creative Company with a Track Record
Greenmission, the company behind Ctrl-Bar, has successfully launched a premium wireless charger for the Tesla Model S/X. With trusted manufacturers and software developers on board, the main obstacles to getting Ctrl-Bar into the hands of Tesla owners are developing the phone app, establishing a reliable connection, avoiding supplier issues and delays, and managing costs. Despite these challenges, Greenmission is confident they can bring Ctrl-Bar to market and provide a much-needed solution to the lack of physical buttons in Tesla vehicles.
Ctrl-Bar is an interesting device that adds some physical buttons for owners who want or need them. It matches well with the interior of the vehicle and still provides a sleek look. However, it will require your phone to have a cellular connection to successfully send commands to the vehicle, since it relies on Tesla's APIs.
Tesla drivers are always looking for ways to improve their experience, and new features will be made available through Over-The-Air updates. Furthermore, users' feedback and suggestions will be considered and worked on in future updates.
TeslaFi is a service that logs your drives and charging sessions so that you can later refer back to them. We highly recommend checking them out if you use your car for business trips and would like to keep track of reimbursements, if you like to see how much you spend on charging or if you just love statistics. View their about us page and see everything they have to offer!