The first Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) service center in Australia will be located in the Sydney suburb of Artarmon, where signage has already been put up. Melbourne will receive a service center in the next few months, which will also feature test drive and sales services. CEO Elon Musk plans to use a new retail model backed up by domestic service centers, with showrooms in carefully selected locations to tempt new customers.
Tesla will be selling its 60 kwh Model S sedan from $90,000 AUD upwards.
The retail experience
Spokesman Heath Walker has claimed that the company is looking for space in key retail shopping centers, and is currently negotiating with Scentre Group, which owns Westfield in Australia, in order to lease prime mall locations in order to show off its cars.
“From the minute the customer walks into the store they will be dealing with Tesla and we will be taking them on the journey right through to delivery and service,” said Mr Walker.
“The store experience is probably like an Apple experience in many ways with touch screen displays and merchandise for sale,” he continued.
Selling directly to consumers has led to problems in various states in the U.S., which have franchise laws to protect car dealerships. The company does not expect to experience similar issues in Australia.
Tesla: The “Story stock”
Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) has become one of the most shorted stocks in the U.S.. It has no earnings but a high valuation based on expectations of its future potential. While some investors believe that Tesla will be blown out of the electric car market when existing manufacturers adopt the technology, others – including Google co-founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page – are backing the company to be a lasting success.
Investors have piled in, leaving the company’s market capitalization above $35 billion, or just over half of BMW’s worth, even though the German manufacturer already sells 2.3 million cars per year.
Some sources expect further growth from Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA). Credit Suisse placed a price target of $325 per share on the company, $94 more than the share price as of Tuesday 21 October.