The cost of Tesla's Full Self Driving has increased 200% since it was revamped and made available to buy in 2019. Those lucky enough to buy FSD in April 2019 got it for the bargain basement price of $5,000 - it now costs $15,000 in the United States.
Elon Musk warned consumers through Twitter that FSD would be more expensive. On August 21 2022, he tweeted: After wide release of FSD Beta 10.69.2, price of FSD will rise to $15k in North America on September 5. Current price will be honored for orders made before September 5 but delivered later.
Tesla reorganized its Autopilot and FSD packages three years ago; basic Autopilot was introduced and became standard on every vehicle, while FSD was priced at $5,000. Enhanced Autopilot was removed as an option at the time, but was later reintroduced as a $6,000 option in June of 2022.
Before 2019 FSD was an add-on that required also buying Enhanced Autopilot. Enhanced Autopilot cost $5,000 and FSD was a $3,000 option on top of that if ordered with the vehicle. If you ordered FSD after taking delivery then it cost $4,000, which later went up to $5,000.
It can only be assumed that there were a lot of buyers for FSD when Tesla rearranged their offerings in 2019, as the price for FSD went up the following month and has been on the rise since.
In fact, Tesla raised the price again three months after the first release, and eighteen months later, it had doubled to $10,000. 2022 started with another jump to $12,000 in January, and now nine months later, the price has gone up again.
Historical FSD Prices
Historical FSD prices since Tesla revamped its FSD offering in 2019.
Tesla's CEO has made no qualms about the value of the program. At a shareholders' meeting in August, he said Tesla's engineers are producing breakthroughs in artificial intelligence. "We're solving a very important part of AI and one that can ultimately save millions of lives. And prevent 10 of millions of serious injuries by driving just an order of magnitude safer than people," said Musk. Since its inception and to this day, Musk believes that Teslas will be fully autonomous. He sees a future where your car would drive you to work, then operate as a ride share until you need to go home.
While Musk said the price would increase to $15,000 in North America, it skyrocketed to $19,500 in Canada, more than a 50% boost from what it cost in August. Although there is a monthly subscription offered in the U.S., there currently isn't one offered north of the border.
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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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