Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Tesla 3Q earnings call... interesting developments

So I listened to the Tesla earnings call today and Elon Musk got right to the point saying that "there was no point wasting time in going over the announcements that were in the investor letter that was just published and that he would go straight to questions". His brazen sarcasm was actually humorous and echo'ed of other CEO's famous for being to-the-point-honest. 
Here are some highlights I thought important and I will discuss them in future posts: 

Total revenues in the third quarter were $58 million, up 85 percent from Q3 of last year.

Tesla announced two significant improvements to the Model S at the event. First, we intend to make a performance version of the Model S available at the start of production. We anticipate that this option will enable the Model S to accelerate from 0 to 60 in about 4.4 seconds, faster than a standard Porsche 911 Carrera! Second, we announced an aerodynamic wheel option that is intended to extend the range of the Model S up to almost 320 miles. This range is almost four times more than any other fully electric vehicle on the market (except, of course, the Tesla Roadster). We also released a more detailed set of Model S features. Also because of the large front trunk space and no engine they are optimistic that the model S may have a chance at being the "safest car on the road". 

-We'll see if this has truth to it but the way Musk describes its safety in the earnings call is compelling. 

Model X Advanced Engineering on Plan
We are excited about how the design and functionality of the Model X is beginning to mature. Our vision for the Model X is a vehicle that combines the functionality of a minivan with a design as cool as an SUV. We remain on plan for an exclusive showing later this year.
"Four wheel drive, and Air-Suspension where you can lower and raise your suspension type depending on the depth of snow or rocks you are driving over" -Elon Musk on earnings call transcript 
Since we are leveraging the Model S architecture and powertrain for Model X, we continue to anticipate that Model X can be brought to production quickly for first customer deliveries in late 2013, with volumes ramping to 10,000 - 15,000 units per year beginning in 2014, and at prices comparable to Model S. Importantly, much of the equipment we are currently installing at the Tesla Factory for the Model S will also be used for the Model X. 

I find that the Model X is very intriguing as a new vehicle concept and the fact that it will be able to change it's distance off the ground sounds like something out of "inspector gadget" but awesome non-the-less. 

Overall,the RAV4 EV development program remains on schedule and should be completed by early 2012, as planned. Thereafter, we plan to begin shipping complete powertrain systems for the RAV4 EV to Toyota, under a multi-year contract of approximately $100 million.

We are also pleased to announce the receipt of a letter of intent from Daimler for a full powertrain program for a vehicle in the Mercedes line. Details of this deal remain confidential, but will be announced in the coming months.

This Mercedes deal with possibly creating the drive train and battery for one of their line of vehicles is also icing on the cake to the Toyota deal coming to fruition. If these partnerships follow through all the way through production Tesla could have a great market in supplying parts and their own cars to most of the auto industry. (well maybe thats getting a little ambitious to say that)

Anyways, great earnings call today and keep posted for more news. 


  1. Good post, but the transcripter is grammar-challenged:
    "rocks your driving over" -Elon Musk on earnings call transcript ".
    That's "you're" pls, short for "you are".

  2. Thanks for the edits Brian, I try to fix every correction people point out. Do you have a blog you want to promote?

  3. "I find that the Model X is very intriguing as a new vehicle concept and the fact that it will be able to change is distance off the ground sounds like something out of "inspector gadget" but awesome non-the-less."

    It should be change 'its' distance

  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

  5. Thanks Justin, it's great why people are excited about EV's. Thanks also for the edit.

  6. Tesla was just down graded by Morgan Stanley today from $70+ a share to $44 target price/share. The stock is trading down approximately 9% currently. Which I just consider a buying opportunity.