Tesla Model 3 To Conquer Electric Car Marketplace

Although Tesla is preparing to release the Model X vehicle, the Model 3 will also be a major release for the company. While the Model X SUV is considered to be something of a sexy vehicle, the Model 3 is Tesla’s first attempt to truly reach a mainstream market. If any electric car manufacturer can claim to have achieved this, it is certainly the market-leading Tesla, but in truth despite its billion-dollar reputation and status, the company still remains something of a niche supplier of vehicles.

Tesla Model 3 To Conquer Electric Car Marketplace

This is not due to a lack of attention that Tesla has generated, in fact the electric car manufacturer punches well above its weight in this department. It is more due to the fact that convincing people to ditch their traditional gas-guzzling vehicles and instead purchase an electric car can be extremely tricky. And Tesla has not managed to achieve this on a mass scale as yet, despite the massive successes of the corporation.

Model 3 to go mainstream

But the Model 3 is really an attempt to do just that, considering that Tesla has already indicated that this will be an extremely affordable vehicle for an electric car. And thus many people as of yet undecided on the concept of electric cars are monitoring the development of the Model 3 very closely. In this context, Tesla has released information this week that will certainly be of interest to many motorists.

The charismatic and high-profile CEO of Tesla, Elon Musk, has stated this week that the Model 3 will roll out in the next two years or so. Musk set an actual timeframe of 2-2.5 years for this hotly anticipated product, while speaking in Berlin at a Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy event.

This is interesting news, as one thing that Tesla is certainly not is a cash rich corporation. The meteoric rise of Tesla has ensured that its reputation is already pretty massive in the electric car marketplace, but it has been pointed out ahead of the release of the Model X that Tesla in fact needs to generate some cash flow pretty rapidly.

Tesla operates in an area of business in which a significant amount of expenditure needs to be invested in every new product, not merely in manufacturing, but also often in development. And this means that Tesla has often burned up huge amounts of its cash reserves by the time that a new product is ready for market. In this respect, the Model X is coming at the right time for the electric car manufacturer, but Tesla would certainly like to get the Model 3 into the public domain more quickly in an ideal world.

Tesla banks on Volkswagen malaise

But Tesla isn’t the only car manufacturer facing difficulties at the moment, indeed this is a massive understatement! Volkswagen was one of the companies expected to make a major move in the electric car marketplace, so the recent controversy regarding its emissions corruption has been a massive blow for the corporation. This could be beneficial to both Tesla and Apple, as the former attempts to cement its market-leading position, while the latter attempts to establish itself in the electric car marketplace.

Musk certainly didn’t miss the opportunity to comment on the Volkswagen situation, stating that he believed that the industry was generally failing to measure all of the appropriate environmental factors. Musk also spoke on the fact that human behaviour is changing the chemical constituency of the atmosphere and the oceans, and that action is necessary. Although these are extremely serious environmental issues, they do also represent excellent public relations opportunities for Tesla, as the latest product ranges become part of the solution to the overarching problem.

So as things stand, 2017 could be a massive year in the electric car niche, as Tesla puts the Model 3 into production. Certainly at the time of writing it appears that the carmaker has pencilled this date into its schedule, and the latter years of the decade will unquestionably make a massive contribution to the electric car marketplace. It has been reported this week that Apple is looking to release the first Apple Car in 2019, and by the end of the decade, the auto market in the United States could have a completely different appearance.

And the Model 3 electric sedan will potentially be as disruptive as the Apple Car, considering the ambitious specifications that Tesla have set aside for this vehicle. The Model 3 will apparently feature a 200-mile range and $35,000 base price when it is released, becoming arguably the first electric vehicle that could be reasonably described as truly affordable.

The only downside for Tesla at the time of writing is that industry analysts remain somewhat sceptical about the potential of the corporation to deliver these supposed specs. It will be essential for Tesla to achieve outstanding battery production in terms of affordability in order to make the $35,000 figure, and certain industry analysts believe that this will be impossible.

Jefferies back Tesla battery potential

However, Tesla also has its fair share of bankers. Tesla has been one of the most divisive companies in the world of business, and this has resulted in a share price that has been pretty volatile. Many investors remain unconvinced by the electric car niche, while some believe that Tesla has excellent demographic opportunities for the future.

In particular, a Jefferies analyst suggested this week that Tesla’s enormous “Gigafactory” will combine with advances in battery chemistry to ensure that Tesla can appreciably reduce Model 3 battery costs. This would enable Tesla to deliver a mass-market vehicle, and it could be the shot in the arm that truly sees the company reach the next level in its status.

Tesla may also be able to collaborate with Apple in the future, and Musk claimed this week that a non-German European automaker contacted Tesla about using the company’s Supercharger network in the future. These are major economic assets for Tesla at a time when it is attempting to establish a new and aggressive business model.

While other companies will also benefit from technological developments in the electric car industry, Tesla has put in place enough infrastructure to suggest that it can remain the leading electric car manufacturer for the remainder of this decade. And the Model 3 will be critical to this aim.

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  • PoweredByRice

    That’s a ridiculous argument you’re making. The tax subsidies that our government gives to Big Oil doesn’t make oil cheaper for us. It just makes the oil companies richer. Oil is a *commodity* and its price is set by the market. OPEC oil production has a far greater effect on oil prices than any tax subsidy our government gives to our oil companies. Get real.

  • 1C5

    Bad point. Take a look around you. The chair you are sitting in, the computer you are typing on, the home you live in all depend on oil. The trucks, trains and ships that take the goods to market. The car you drive to work … even Tesla’s manufacture and the utilities they depend on. Imagine for one moment what would happen if oil rose to $10.00 per gallon. How much would a plane ticket be if Jet-A was $10.00 a gallon? It would be catastrophic and you might find yourselves living in a shack trying to eck out a living from a patch of dirt.

  • 1C5

    Sadly, the vast majority of urban buyers cannot afford a Tesla.

  • 1C5

    James – It is a pleasure to exchange viewpoints with you. You have a number of good ideas including questions that keep me honest. My thinking about hydrogen beyond a few advantages it might presently have over BEV’s is not entirely complete. For sure it has a long way to way to go.

    One thing in my mind is I do not regard oil companies as wicked or evil. They are in the game to make a profit just as any other company. They provide services and a product that enables all of us to live our lives. If they disappeared our economy would collapse and many in large cities would simply die and many would begin to live as third world peasant farmers. I think $10.00 per gallon oil would almost accomplish as much. Perhaps hydrogen gives them an opening to do what they are good at. Refining, production and transportation. In this area we are paying $2.30 for gas. Even at $3.00, the price is workable and could be considered on par with BEV’s. Perhaps a Leaf is less expensive to operate but it is quite limited in where it can travel. A cheap ICE can travel anywhere in the country and in most conditions. A Tesla is way beyond the reach of most Americans. So just maybe it might not be such a bad thing to allow oil companies to try their hand at transitioning from gas to hydrogen. I could be all wrong about this. But I do think hydrogen can power trucks, cars, perhaps ships. If companies could supply hydrogen for mass transportation they might be able to continue supplying Jet-A for the airlines and enough oil for an orderly transition.

    Again, I could be absolutely wrong in this thinking, but it is the first idea that came to mind.

  • James

    Clay, I am a big supported of Tesla, but I am afraid that they only have one battery swap station. The other 220 charge station are high-speed charging only.

    As an aside, I am glad that they are not building out battery swap stations. The capital costs would eat them alive and the value to their customer would only be marginally better than with Superchargers.

  • PoweredByRice

    I think it’s safe to say that Tesla is aiming its car at the vast majority of drivers that live within a 10 mile commute to work. Musk is not concerned about the tiny minority of buyers that live in remote rural areas. Your particular concerns are not mirrored by the vast majority of urban buyers.

  • PoweredByRice

    Excellent point. Big Oil has enjoyed huge government tax subsidies for over 90 years now.

    But when green technologies get some very modest government subsidies, people go nuts.

  • 1C5

    Good thoughts. Tesla confirmed 250 US supercharger stations would be in place at the end of 2014. Now according to numerous sources, the total stands between 198 – 203. What happened? They must cover the 3.8 million miles of US roads. Many are concentrated on the coasts … they’re hardly everywhere. Tesla’s are great cars. However, right now all BEV’s comprise 1/7th of 1% of all US cars. Li-Ion technology is still plagued by limitations. if you live in a coastal area you will have a great car and enjoy every moment you have it. If you live in an apartment with no garage or convenient charge points you will struggle. If you live in the vast areas that are charge point wastelands you will struggle. If you live in New York City you will struggle (many sources report severe lack of infrastructure). So far the figure you cite of .1% applies to Tesla owners. They are not mainstream all purpose cars people can drive anywhere … only 1/2 of 1% of the US population can afford one. And as you described, many Tesla owners on their own forum report they also have an ICE in the garage.

    I applaud GM, Ford and others for building millions of reasonably priced basic cars that millions of Americans can buy to help them live their lives. I applaud them for providing jobs that enabled millions to buy a home and support their families.

    Although I know gas will diminish in the distant future, I also applaud the oil producers. There are smug short sighted persons who have made stupid, senseless claims that I am an oil loving terrorist. But those persons with limited awareness need only look around their homes to see how that oil has made their lives better. The furniture they sit on … the TV’s and computers they use … even the utilities that produce electricity … virtually every aspect of their life was made possible by oil … whether during the manufacturing process … trucking the goods to stores … or driving to IKEA to shop and pick them up. Tesla people often refer to “economies of scale.” Imagine for one moment what would happen if the oil producers decided it was no longer feasible to process enough oil to be profitable and therefore raise the prices? Imagine for one moment how your life would be impacted if the price of oil jumped to $10 or $15 dollars a gallon?? The entire US economy would be in jeopardy. Trucks, trains, utilities, aircraft and motor vehicles would all be affected. Imagine the price of a plane ticket if JET-A was $10.00 a gallon. Would a massive disruption in oil based transportation have an effect on such a scenario? I’m not sure but it is a possibility.

    Further, relative to the oil and terrorist bit, my friend is an engineer in the Alberta Shale Fields. He describes the enormous potential for oil that exists and also mentioned that much of their production goes directly to US refineries via rail.

    I respect the earth and realize something must be done to minimize man’s impact on its health. But I think people must be very careful to make changes in a slow measured way. Perhaps hydrogen is the answer. Europe is finding ways to make it work. It is produced in the cleanest manner available and trucked to service stations. Even London’s Sainesbury shopping center has a public “hydrogen dispenser.” I would bet they’re not producing it onsite. I think BEV’s will always have their place. But I hope men are careful with their thinking. We will see.

  • ClaySConrad

    At the Tesla charging stations, you can “swap out” the battery pack for a fully charged one in the time it takes to fill a gas tank.

  • ClaySConrad

    They are ready for prime time, just not for the hinterlands.

  • ClaySConrad

    Or the oil industry, which has lived off gov’t subsidies (including massive military expenditures) for many many years…

  • ClaySConrad

    What percentage of the population lives in areas like that, IC5? .1%?

    Wow, the great things Tesla is building aren’t for everyone… oy vey. Who cares?

    The fact is that Tesla’s building a mass-market car that is the best choice for anyone in an urban/suburban environment. Yes, I’ll also have an IC car for those rare times I take a road trip over 150 miles away. The fact that one tool isn’t the best for EVERY job doesn’t mean that tool isn’t the best for MOST jobs.

  • ClaySConrad

    I’m waiting to place my Model 3 order. I’d buy one today if they were available…

  • James

    I’ll have to look into the hydrogen stations in Europe. I am guessing that there are some compromises somewhere in the mix.

    I think that we agree on many points and appreciate your comments, but there is one comment that confuses me. You talk about the potential disruption that mass adoption of EVs could have on our economy. I agree that this is a danger . . . similar to if oil subsidies were removed and we had to pay the full price of gas. But what I do not understand is that you then present fuel cell vehicles being a better alternative presumably because there will be less disruption to oil consumption. So if the advantage of fuel cells is that they will not be viable at large scale for an extended time? This just seems like such an odd point.

  • 1C5

    James – your argument makes a lot of sense. I agree with some of it. The California CCSE (California Commission for Sustainable Energy) study suggests fuel cell vehicles will become mainstream in the distant future. I think they based their conclusions on a guess that Li-Ion will always have limitations and it will take 10 years or more to conclude proof of concept and practical testing on new groundbreaking technology.

    Two, right now … fuel cell cars already approach the capability of present ICE’s. They have good range, are impervious to temps down to -39C, and feature quick refills. Simply comparing BEV’s and FCV’s side by side the FCV has clear advantages. Of course FCV have little to no infrastructure.

    Your math includes numbers such as 2 – 3 million dollars to construct each hydrogen station. Will that always be the case? Even London’s Sainesbury supermarket chain has a public “hydrogen dispenser.” How did the hydrogen get there? They certainly do not produce the hydrogen on site. Much of Europe’s model includes producing hydrogen at advantagious locations and trucking it stations where it is stored where needed. I doubt that requires two million dollars. Further one can Google two new hydrogen stations in Britain that are completely “zero carbon.” They use wind and solar. Sadly, they can only service 18 cars per day but perhaps the model will change. The CCSE study suggests in the US hydrogen can be produced in favorable locations and then piped via existing natural gas lines to substations where it can be trucked to service stations. They even venture to guess hydrogen will likely cost $3.82 per unit approximating a gallon of gas. Expensive … but they point out the power will energize electric motors that are far more efficient than ICE’s. Therefore the real cost might hover around $2.25 per gallon.

    Three. A Tesla must lug around a 1,200 lb battery to achieve 220 miles of range (Consumer Reports … citing “normal” driving conditions). This range will be far less on single digit winter days. Tesla owners on their own forum report 30 – 33%. That means 154 miles. Not a workable number on long cross country trips in winter. Meanwhile the Mirai (I admit it is ugly) ranges over 320 miles on 11 lbs of compressed hydrogen. The energy density of NCA rechargable batteries is 2.1MJ/L. The energy density of compressed hydrogen is 5.6 MJ/L … a clear advantage.

    One other consideration is the role oil plays in our lives. if we look around us virtually everything we see has a connection to oil. Our chairs, TV’s, computers. Not only to produce but to enable trucks to haul them to the marketplace and power our cars to IKEA to shop and purchase. GM, Ford and others deserve great credit for building small, simple, reliable and AFFORDABLE cars that allow millions to live their lives. As bad as oil is, what do you think think will happen if the oil companies decide they can no longer produce oil with economies of scale and choose to curtail and raise the prices?? Imagine what $10 – $15.00 gas will trigger. It will be catastropic. American car companies might drastically scale back their production. Millions of Americans will lose jobs. It will cost far more to produce the goods we need. It will cost more to haul the goods to the market and it will cost us far more to travel. Just imagine what the cost of air travel will be if Jet-A is $10 per gallon. I won’t be flying again.

    So I think people must think carefully about the disruption EV’s could produce and think about a slow, measured transition to green cars that will not compromise our lives. This is where hydrogen might have advantages. People may want cleaner cars, but they don’t want to live in a shanty and eck out a living from a patch of dirt either. Wherever people are involved there are mistakes. However, Toyota is a vast and powerful world-wide company that has an extensive and well funded R&D department. Some smug persons on these forums have claimed they are in league with big oil and terrorists no less. I think that is foolish thinking and would like to know what they were thinking before going “all in” with hydrogen.

    I am quite in agreement with you in that I am not clear what the end results will be. I look forward to driving behind clean efficient electric motors but beyond that cannot say for certain what will power those motors. Maybe it will be batteries, maybe hydrogen or something we haven’t even seen yet.

    Gas will be around for decades so science has a chance to do their homework and show us their stuff. The next 4 or 5 years might begin to provide more answers.

  • Sandy

    It’s great to finally see a photo of the Model 3. According to the Tesla website, they will start accepting orders on 1/1/16, but that may be delayed. I love what Tesla stands for, and look forward to buying a Tesla that’s affordable.

  • besser_wisser

    Huh so you dont find subsidies in BIG Oil?

  • James

    Yes, oil is subsidized in many more direct ways than Tesla is subsidized. It should be noted that the subsidies that most people site for Tesla are not direct Tesla subsided (although you could make an argument that Navada is subsidizing the Gigafactory).

    Tesla’s “subsidies” are in the form of tax deductions that go to people who purchase Teslas and in the form of Zero Emission Vehicle credits which are not paid by the government. There are a host of minor incentives and tax breaks for building factories and such that every business takes advantage of as well, but for simplicity I think that you might agree to exclude those being they are not specific to Tesla.

    Oil subsidies direct production tax breaks, exploration grants, public land/resource use fee waivers, oil extraction technology grants, and drilling write-offs to name a few. All of these subsidies directly effect the tax balance sheet in the sum of approximately $5b/y. This excludes other indirect costs born directly by the government for clean-up costs and military support (protecting oil shipping channels). Annualized government spends approximately $1b on un-reimbursed clean-up costs and between $10b and $30b for shipping channel protection. Land based military spending security oil supply is more difficult to estimate, but likely adds another $15b to $20b/y. These military costs related to war activities are difficult to attribute directly to oil so for the sake of this argument we will exclude them, but I think we can agree that they are non-zero. I am also excluding fuel purchase subsidies at approximately $15b/y for farming and industry being these do not go directly to the oil companies–although these subsidies are the most equivalent to the $7,500 EV purchase tax deductions. I am keeping all the numbers conservative. Many studies note oil subsidies in the $300b/y range. But my point here is not to enumerate an exact number, but to establish that they do exist.

    OK, so there are your oil company subsidies. So what is your opinion on oil companies now?

  • PoweredByRice

    Well, for starters, there are only 850k people in all of San Francisco, so I don’t know where you are getting this “millions in SF live in apartments.”. As someone who was born and raised in SF, the majority of SF housing stock is single family homes or flats, not apartments.

    Secondly, the supercharger network is not meant to be as ubiquitous as gas stations. They are meant to be strategically located at certain points in order to allow for long trips. Most people will charge their cars at home in their garages. I work in Silicon Valley, and many corporate campuses already have several spaces reserved for EV’s with chargers.

    Third, I still find it curious why you are so focused on the negatives. Building out an entirely new charging infrastructure takes time. Cheaper Tesla’s are on the roadmap. More Supercharger stations are on the way. The gigafactory in Nevada is being built which will allow for economies of scale resulting in cheaper batteries.

    Your main complaint seems to be that everything isn’t perfect the way you want it RIGHT NOW. “So why talk about Tesla if everything isn’t perfect?”

  • Objective

    Is oil subsidized? Average tax per gallon of gas in the US is $0.48. In Europe, it is far, far higher. So is a half a dollar tax on every gallon of gas that anybody in the US buys a subsidy? Could you answer that, and then rephrase your question, because the only sense I can make of it is that you would like to change the subject after I brought up that Tesla is HEAVILY subsidized. (To the tune of tens of thousands per car!)

  • James

    Objective, if you are against companies that leach and suck money from state and federal subsidies then what is your opinion on oil companies?

  • James

    I don’t think that Elon wishes that he would have built a PHEV first. Building a PHEV only makes sense if you already own all the technology and expertise associated with that thousands are parts that are required for a traditional car. When Apple released the iPhone many analysts said that they should have introduced a phone with a keyboard first and then transition into touch screens. In both cases the goal is to get ride of unnecessary complexity and costs even if you reduce the initial market appeal and focus on the longer term benefits in the marketplace. Almost all the complaints about electric vehicles are solvable problems are relatively modest scale. The only insurmountable problem is charge times will likely never get down to 5 minutes, but taking 30 minutes to charge every three to five hours (accounting for future range improvements) on road trip might be a reasonable trade-off for all the other cost and convenience benefits to many people.

  • James

    Is Toyota making a mistake? I don’t know, but there are a few economic issues with hydrogen when compared to electric.

    The first challenge is with the number of filling stations needed in order to support the market at a similar scale we currently enjoy with gas cars. In order for hydrogen to gain a foothold in the market the number of filling stations in that market needs to approach the number of gas stations; at the very least 1/3 to 1/2 as many [more on this below]. If hydrogen filling stations are not sufficiently dense people will spend a significant portion of their fuel driving to get their fuel which increases the cost and reduces the value. Electric cars on the other hand do not need any public charging stations for some people to find them practical being they can be charged with existing home infrastructure. Keep in mind that approximately 60% of the U.S. population lives in a home with accessible charging. The addition of city charging stations opens up the market for renters and the additional of highway “superchargers” increases the usage and value of the vehicles. Outside of home changers there probably needs to be about 1/10 as many public charging stations as there are gas stations to reach parity.

    The second problem is related to the costs. While special electric vehicle home charging equipment is not necessary for many people, some people are willing to spend the $500 ~ $1500 for a higher speed home charger. Keep in mind that this home charger on average covers 95% of “refuelling” needs. Tesla spends an estimated $300k per station that provides on average six chargers. City charging stations cost in the range of $3k ~ $10 per plug depending on wiring and facility requirements. Like gas vehicle owners, hydrogen vehicle owners are solely dependent on public hydrogen stations. On average a gas stations costs $1.5 ~ $3 million to build. A hydrogen station costs approximately 1.5 ~ 2 times as much as a gas station.

    The third challenge is with the capacity of each fuelling station. Gas stations can typically service a car every ten minutes or upwards of 50 vehicles per day per pump comfortably. Gas stations also have many pump; easily four pumps per station and upwards of 16 in some cases. Tesla’s Supercharger stations will can service about 10 vehicles per day per charger and each has between 4 and 8 chargers. Keep in mind that Superchargers are only needed for longer distance driving. Hydrogen stations typically only have two pumps and each pump can handle close to 50 vehicles per day. Note that hydrogen fuelling station capacity is not a function of refuelling time, but of the hydrogen capacity of the station itself. A 180 kilogram station cost a few million and a Mirai holds about 5kg–I am rounding generously in the hydrogen station’s favor.

    So what does all this mean. It means that there the economic hurdle for hydrogen vehicles is two-fold: building sufficient initial capacity to seed the market and the comparable costs associated with operating at full market capacity.

    For electric vehicles there is effectively ZERO infrastructure cost to seed the early adopter market being home charging already exists. People who would like the faster home charging take on this expense directly. This market would consist of the number of household with access to electricity and own at least two vehicles. This potential “early adopter” market is approximately 50 million vehicles provided the vehicles has sufficient daily driving range which I do not believe is the case with most electric vehicles today.

    The story for seeding the hydrogen fuel cell market is much more complicated. Let’s assume each car drives 32 miles per day (12,000 annual average) and has a range of 300 miles. That means that on average every car will need to refuel every 10 days. The hydrogen station has a capacity of approximately 50 vehicles per day so that means we need at least 1 hydrogen station per 500 vehicles. Put another way, our early adopter market is limited by how many $3 ~ $5 million fuel stations are built. So optimistically it would cost at least $160 million dollars of infrastructure investment to open up the market to 30,000 vehicles. This does not get into the challenges of uneven demand or knowing where to build the stations based on future vehicle purchases for an untested market.

    Incidentally, the $160 million dollar infrastructure investment would more than double the existing nationwide Tesla Supercharger capacity. In order to open up hydrogen travel nation wide we would be looking at an investment closer to a trillion dollars. And at full market capacity all that infrastructure has to be amortized in fees incorporated into the charging. Please note that we have not even discussed the difference in cost associated with generating fuel or electricity.

    So, is Toyota making a mistake? The math is pretty basic. There are many people who believe that Toyota is going after free government money. Others believe that Toyota is muddying the market until electric vehicles are a slam-dunk. And still other that believe there will be regulations that will ultimately dictate a market for fuels that require large centralize powerful companies. If the markets are left along to work this out Toyota could be making an enormous mistake. But as long as there is subsidies and consolidated market power in play it is not clear what the end results will be.

  • 1C5

    Now I’ll be frank … If you dig you’ll find articles wherein Tesla confirmed they would have 250 (America) superchargers by the end of 2014. What happened?? According to various sources the number of US supercharger stations now stands at +/- 198 to 203. That’s not exactly increasing the supercharger network in the US. I happen to live in a Northern region that is a charging wilderness. No BEV will work here. Of course you have very little concern for us or others in this area. So … might I ask you … Do you own a Tesla?? Can you afford one?? The FACTS show that millions of Americans living in large metropolitan cities can’t afford one either (1/7th of 1%). What about other BEV’s? A Chicago news journal did a study on the Leaf during a week when the temps hovered between 0 and 6 degrees F. In that test that you can Google, the Leaf’s range dropped to 25 miles while using heat and lights (Quite necessary on a cold February day). Not nearly enough for a typical commute from Naperville to Chicago. Having a dead BEV in downtown Chicago in February is not a scenario you want to find yourself in. New York City? A number of articles pointed out New York is not the place for a BEV. Long commutes in heavy traffic, few to no charge points in the city, frigid temps in winter (remember the Leaf?). Millions in San Fransciso live in apartments. One Tesla owners said this, “If someone doesn’t have a garage or charge point where they park its game over.”

    I mentioned in a previous post my opinion that Tesla’s are great cars. But many owners who love them are smart and use them within a niche were they have no worries or anxiety. Many who can afford a Tesla aren’t worried about gas. In fact people from Tesla’s own forum say, “We keep an ICE for longer trips and have no problem with anyone else who does.”

    I mentioned that I look forward to driving behind clean efficient electric motors. However, BEV’s are not yet ready for prime time. Yet each time I turn on my computer I find its loaded with more Tesla fluff!! Tesla obliterates Hellcat … Tesla shaves two tenths of a second off 0 – 60 time …. What mature adults give a rip about that? They want a mainstream all purpose car that can reliably take them where they want to go. Yet Elon Musk reminds me of a Carnival Barker who is always in my face. The latest fluff is his jab at Volkswagon. Although they deserve it, Musk parlayed his comments into a general condemnation of all ICE cars. In part, two of these ICE’s are vehicles we depend on to get to work, to the bank, grocery store or doctor. As I mentioned, in this area, a BEV isn’t practical. I would much rather see an article that says, “Tesla now features an honest range of 400 miles and 15 minute recharge.” That would be great news and if the price were a little more affordable we might consider one to replace one of the ICE’s. Still, the truth is the truth. A Tesla in “normal” conditions cannot go 400 miles, in fact, not much more than 250. If GM, Ford or Chrysler offered such a car I would say the same things. Meanwhile, Toyota receives very little publicity. Are they quietly working behind the scene to make hydrogen viable? I sure don’t know. What I do know is the cars we have right now are getting the job done perfectly well.

  • Actium Realty

    If Tesla can reduce the 60% battery tech premium they’ll rule the auto world. As it is, the Model S is an Audi A6 that costs 50% more than a real Audi A6 (but it saves you 300$ a month in gas). Only wealthy “early adopter” techies buy Teslas now. That is NOT a business model for mainstream success. If they can get that tech price premium down to about 10% they’ll be a smashing success.

  • Arthur Doucette

    Good grief, get a grip.
    Tesla built a much more expensive version of the Leaf on an existing Toyota assembly line.
    They batteries they bought from Panasonic, the electric motors from a company called AC Propulsion, the majority of the other parts are OEM from other suppliers (brakes, lights, instruments etc).

  • Jouni Valkonen

    Volvo has zero interests on electric cars. Neither Volvo Cars nor Volvo Group that manufacturers heavy trucks and busses.

  • Objective

    The only thing Tesla is leading in is collection of government subsidies. I dare you, or anyone, to Google “CargoFish”, and you’ll see what’s the future really will be. (And it isn’t copying anybody.)

  • peter904

    Arthur. Good point, it is only relevant to the few us who live in California and have to use the reformulated, lower polluting gasoline, and a group of refineries that manipulate the market with periodic “accidents,” maintenance, etc.

  • Andrew

    Numbers don’t make a leader. Tesla is leading in technology, innovation, and quality. They are the future and everyone is going to copy them.

  • Arthur Doucette

    Sure, narrow the definition, and you can prove anything.
    The Volt is arguably more innovative as it gets most of its miles on battery power but has none of the limitations of the Tesla and you can buy two of them for the price of one model S.

  • Arthur Doucette

    Current US average is but $2.28, so pointing to the one place where it is more expensive is hardly relevant.

    Current Avg.$2.288

  • Arthur Doucette

    I never mentioned Alaska.
    Try to keep up.

  • Christian Koncz

    The Model X SUV can do 250 miles on a charge, in a couple of years, range will be over 300 miles. The 110 volt thing in the US is ridiculous, but that isn’t the actual power on the power lines, it’s just that the household application is antiquated. Every household can easily be equipped with 3-phase 380 volt, 32 AMP power outlets, it costs a few hundred dollars, nothing compared to the cost of a new car. As for Hydrogen fuel cells, I think that’s a ruse, hydrogen simply isn’t scalable or easily transportable and in effect it is just a very expensive and dangerous method to run an electric car.

  • strato man

    I completely agree. My point is only that we won’t know if Tesla will actually make a significant difference in the adoption of electric cars until they start selling a car that lots of people can afford to buy. I really like the Tesla S and I hope that they are able to actually get large numbers of people to use electric cars, we just don’t know yet.

  • peter904

    Arthur. D. I stand corrected 89 octane not 91. The Model 3 is aimed at the BMW 3 Series customer. The BMW 328 use to require 91 octane now 89 is recommended. Lucky you gasoline is more reasonable in your neck of the woods but in Southern California with special blends of gasoline, not so low. 89 octane is still over $3.

    IMO, a Tesla is far less dependent on charging infrastructure than the other BEVs currently on the market. With a 240 Volt Nema 14-50 in the garage you can fully charge in 6 hours or less. I agree city commuting BEVs do have range and charging challenges.

  • Przemys?aw Lib

    Actually superchargers are cheap. Order of magnitude cheaper then hydro/gas.

  • Przemys?aw Lib


    BEVs charged overnight would suit most daily commutes. No special equipment needed. Just plug it it for a night.

  • Przemys?aw Lib

    Lowers price enough to pach 60kWh pack into 35k sedan.

  • Liedeca

    Tesla is clearly an industry leader in innovation for electric powered vehicles.
    This is a car maker that didn’t exist before 2000 and you are comparing it with manufactorors

  • Przemys?aw Lib

    Do Yours again. Tesla build factory that equals sum of today’s output of li on batteries.

    How can that be cheap.

    Yes Tesla earns some profit on each S…. To spent it right away on investment.

  • Bobby

    For Tesla, its a reason to raise capital. And they will if they need to because they can.

  • oubrioko

    based upon . . . ?

  • Earl Henson

    What I object to is someone putting out a product and ramming it down my throat whether through
    marketing, legislation or crony capitalism. “crony capitalism”

    So you must be mad at GM too who got a HUGE loan from the government.

  • PoweredByRice

    And an Alaskan car driver is hardly your average driver. There are more people in San Francisco alone than there are in the entire state of Alaska.

  • PoweredByRice

    I don’t think anyone ever claimed that electric vehicles were a practical solution for everyone. Musk however, is steadily increasing his SuperCharger network. I just find it curious that you are focusing on all the people who are supposedly not likely to get an electric vehicle vs all of the people who *can*. The majority of the USA’s population lives in large metropolitan cities.

    I simply don’t understand all this negativity towards an *American* car company that is attempting to forge a new business model and build a new infrastructure to support that. To be frank, I have very little concern if some remote farmer in the midwest or Alaska may not be practically served by a Tesla. If millions of other Americans can benefit from one and save gas while doing it, then that satisfies me.

  • 1C5

    In the US everyone has the right to say what he/she thinks. Google a few Elon Musk comments about Toyota, GM or hydrogen. He’s not tactful and some of his words are quite unprintable. Is he a hater? No. Does he have that right? Yes.

  • 1C5

    You are right. Whenever people are involved big mistakes can often happen. Toyota is no exception. However, are you writing off their hydrogen program already? The California CCSE (California Commission for Sustainable Energy) study guessed hydrogen will become the mainstream power source in the distant future. They even speculate how hydrogen could be produced at advantagious locations and piped to sub terminals via existing natural gas lines and then transported to service station storage tanks as it is done in Europe right now. In Britain, even the London Sainesberry super market has a public hydrogen dispenser and they certainly did not produce the hydrogen on site. Of course in the US hydrogen use faces many obstacles. I certainly do not know whether those problems will ever be solved. We can only wait to see.

    So far, if Toyota is making a mistake I don’t think it will be as stupid as the F4 going into combat without guns. They reckoned their vaunted missile technology would rule the skies. Technology is not always the answer. Sometimes old fashioned guns save the day. I don’t think the military ever repeated that mistake.

  • Meh

    Shorting, eh?

  • Mike Daniel

    So? You think that makes the batteries free or something?

  • Mike Daniel

    “To test with”? lol. So, he’s sold a few thousand “test models” to Guinea pigs? By the way, these “test” models going for around $110k each? Not a single one of them makes a profit. Tesla is losing thousands of dollars on each car. It’s a fact, dude. Do some research.

  • Mike Daniel

    I’ll give Tesla another 3, maybe 4 years before they file bankruptcy. What do you say, Tesla trolls? You want to start your rabid dog attack on me now? lol.

  • Mike Daniel

    Hey, just like you, he’s welcome to his opinion. You may not like it, but that’s not his problem.

  • Mike Daniel

    He has a valid point. I’m a CPA, so you don’t need to spell capital expenditures to me. Cash is cash. Burning through it creating huge losses is a recipe for bankruptcy.

  • Mike Daniel

    blah blah, you are the troll.

  • 1C5

    I can see how frustrated you are by some things are wrote. However, building cars is not my job. Elon Musk lives in an 18 million dollar mansion in Bel Aire. He just bought Gene Wilders home across the street. He is handsomely compensated for his efforts. Building cars is part of what he does. What I object to is someone putting out a product and ramming it down my throat whether through marketing, legislation or crony capitalism. I object to seeing multiple missives about Tesla fluff each time I read the news. Is it so important that Tesla obliterates a Hellcat or shaves 2/10’s of a second off of its 0 – 60 time? Then it appears in five different variants.

    No one has stopped trying. Tesla is in the fight of its life. BMW is converting its entire line to electric. Audi, Mercedes and others are jumping in to offer their cars. CAFE laws and European standards are forcing car builders to improve and they are. I live in a charge point wasteland. It is beautiful country and peaceful but it does get very cold in winter. I do appreciate the earth, but here a BEV will not work and I resent anyone jeopardizing my choice to buy an SUV that reliably travels where I have to go. Our family is waiting for the first PHEV SUV to arrive on the market. Perhaps it will be a BMW X5? We would make it a point to plug in whenever we could. We would be driving behind clean efficient electric motors. That’s my start.

  • Earl Henson

    “Toyota is a vast and powerful company. Its R&D department is well funded”
    Yeah and very powerful companies and govenments also, make very BIG DUMB
    mistakes many times. TOYOTA won’t even stop the Hydrogen car program BECAUSE they have so much money in it. Even if it turns out it won’t work.

    The Pentagon made the F4 Phantom fighter jet without GUNS
    because they thought the future was shooting the enemy from 2 miles away with missiles.
    Only problem is the ACTUAL jet pilots got into dog fights that needed guns that weren’t there!

  • Geordie Schall

    Non-German automaker Volvo is smart to ally with Musk. F-cking genius he is.

  • Earl Henson

    “The range is affected by cold.”
    So what should we do as a society, stop trying? Good grief, you invent something better!
    Stop trying is the ONLY alternative the way you talk about this. It’s hard to do, so what?
    Musk and others will get it right. So it takes 10 years. With you it’d take 100 years because
    you’d never get started.

  • Earl Henson

    You realize these expensive models are just to test with and get the market going and make a profit before he release the everyday driver model? you also realized that flat screen tvs were $2000 before the market adopted them?

  • 1C5

    You make a good point. The most reliable votes people ever cast are the ones they cast with their dollars. So far this year, in the US, 16 million cast votes for ICE’s. 1,000’s voted for BEV’s. Perhaps the jump toward pure EV’s is premature? Maybe Chevy had the right idea with PHEV’s. As you know, BMW is also going all electric with many in their lineup as PHEV’s. I think these are a great transition from what we have now to the distant future … cars running behind electric motors that people can plug in when they can and use gas if they must. After all gas and its 121,000 stations will be here for decades. I’ve seen many Volt owners take great pride in using little to no gas. Still, they have no anxiety or difficulty going anywhere they choose. We are waiting for the first PHEV SUV’s. We will be in line.

    Tesla deserves great credit for producing a BEV with looks and performance that stirs the soul. However, GM spent billions to craft the transparent drive train in the Volt and they did a great job. Owners of the Volt or i3 models say they are barely aware when the gas/generator kicks in. Sometimes I think Elon Musk wished he had the resources to develop PHEV’s first. A Tesla that could go anywhere as easily as any luxury ICE would have been a great transition. Who could argue? Then/if battery technology made drastic improvements it would be an easy transition to dump the gas motor and go pure EV. Now it feels like BEV makers and the government are saying this is what exists and you’ll like it!! I think BMW’s transition will start a transition of sorts. An X5 PHEV is quite appealing. We’ll see.

  • Robert

    Regarding gas prices:

    Energy prices are going up across the board. “Green” folks are not excluded. My electric rate is going up steadily. Plus, my connection/maintenance fee for my solar array more than doubled, without notice, this month. Plus state tax credits on new solar installations have disappeared with no renewal in sight. State and nations are beginning to pull back on EV tax credits. Federal subsidies for Tesla (and Nissan Leaf buyers) will begin to taper down around the time that Model 3 is available. Read an article, in locales where there is an increased demand to install 240v connections that electricians smell blood in the water and are hiking there installation fees, which are not cheap to begin with, especially if permitted and inspected by the municipality. Road use fees are being entertained in my state because EVs don’t pay gas taxes. EV charge points that started out free are now more than double the rate a resident pays and is closing in on gas prices are they continue to fall. (And remember most people don’t have ready access to plug in at night, or any time else and those that do have only 110). Green fee hikes are going on and on into the night.

  • 1C5

    Nice comment.

  • Robert

    Based on your detail assessment H2 is a complete failure in the bassinet. Surely it will fail before even the government funding commitments have run their course. Just your calculation of the cost of H2 to the consumer let alone the real production cost of a Mirai assures complete failure in the market place.. So, I would not worry about it.

  • Will Davis

    How is the push premature? The fastest way to develop the technologies is to push it!

  • Will Davis

    Solar panels? Or: if we just stopped refining oil. Do you not know how much energy refining uses?

  • Fred Grow

    Pure laws of physics and chemistry make Hydrogen cars a disaster. Toyota is just acting on behalf of Big Oil and is in pursuit of ZEV credits. The Petroleum Industry wants to stay in the vehicle
    fuel business. To produce H2 at anywhere near a commercial price that competes
    with ICEVs gasoline or BEVs electricity, steam reforming of methane (from
    fracked methane) will be used. This is the current method of production of H2.
    In fact on last count the current hydrogen industry produced 3% of all global
    CO2 emissions while producing a measly 50 Metric Tons of H2. Just to put that in
    perspective, in the same year 2013, 4126.6 Million metric tonnes of crude oil
    were produced and I don’t have the tons of coal, but it would be massive and
    far more CO2 emissions than oil. And yet H2 production produces significant CO2
    emissions for a relatively tiny production today.

    So the cars operation is green, sounds great, a fantastic marketing image,
    only produces water vapor! But, the production of the fuel for it makes
    it dirtier than an average ICEV!

    If you make H2 from renewables you lose so much energy in the electrolysis
    of water and it takes enormous energy to compress the H2 to 10,000psi. So the
    price would be 3 times the cost of the dirty production. The H2 stations are
    costing 1.5 – 2 million a piece and I would not live within a mile of a ton of
    stored H2!!! Because Hydrogen is the smallest atom it has to have very high
    tech containment vessels which still leak H2 slowly. As an example of the HFCV,
    the Toyota Mirai cost roughly $150,000.00 to produce and Toyota is selling for
    approx $65,000. If they sold approximately 150K of these cars they would use up all their cash reserves. It’s just a compliance car for ZEV creditsThe car has very ordinary performance, but a good range. The back seat passenger are sitting directly over the 5kg H2 tank.
    If you want to see the explosive power of hydrogen, just watch the next
    rocket launch. So why are Honda and Toyota working on the HFCVs?? It’s to support
    big oil and to collect ZEV credits so they can sell all their ICEV at the tax
    payer’s expense. The Mirai is the biggest scam in automotive history and Toyota should be sued for

  • strato man

    Tesla hasn’t appreciably impacted the market because the cars are way way too expensive. I did a couple of Tesla S test drives and found the car to be quite nice. Fast, comfortable, a bit numb handling but about like other luxury cars from Mercedes, Audi, etc., though the interior doesn’t match that of Audi or BMW. The problem is the price. When I totaled up the cost for a Tesla S D with some (not all) options, it worked out to about $125K. Certainly there are cars from Audi, Mercedes and BMW that cost that much but that puts Tesla at the absolute top end of the luxury market (way past Lexus, Infinity, or anything else not made in Germany).

    Tesla made a very wise choice going for the luxury market. They knew the cost of any electric car with decent range would be high so they decided to go for the only market in which they could compete (at that time) and they did extremely well. The question is, can they successfully compete in a price range that people can actually afford? The only way that Tesla can have a significant impact on the portion of electric cars vs fossil fuel is if they can make an electric car with similar range and price to a traditional car.

  • Objective

    Tesla is the leading leach sucking money from state and federal subsidies, without which they would disappear. Wasted public money is good reason for criticism. Lastly, I have something far more worthwhile than battery electric cars. The only reason you are still clueless about it is that it isn’t surrounded by a mob of charlatans like battery electric cars.

  • 1C5

    You have an interesting point. I think many are still playing a waiting game. A study by the California CCSE commission predicts fuel cell cars will become mainstream all purpose cars in the distant future. Although hydrogen has its own major problems, I just read articles that described two hydrogen stations in Britain that are totally carbon neutral and have the capacity to fill 8 cars each day. Who knows how viable that is. And you are correct that electricity is everywhere. Still, BEV’s require specific equipment to recharge in practical fashion and require vast amounts of electricity. That is not frigging everywhere. Especially for Tesla’s, 115 volts that is almost everywhere ain’t going to cut it. A full charge takes 55 hours @ 115 volts. Even 4 hours at a gas station is way too long especially if millions of BEV’s are on the road. I don’t know what will power clean efficient electric motors in future cars. But I do know I would want them to at least get close to the capability of our current SUV. it has a 22 gallon tank that can get us 400 miles with moderate driving … 320 while cruising at 85MPH with the heat on. We stop when we choose and planning is little to none at all. And of course, if we choose, we can be underway in under 5 minutes.

    Toyota is a vast and powerful company. Its R&D department is well funded and employs some smart people. I would love to know what they were thinking when going “all in” for hydrogen cars. I sure don’t know the answers. But we may know more in 4 or 5 years.

  • Christian Koncz

    It is only a question of legislation. If every petrol station in the world was required by law to provide charging points (most of them are hooked up to industrial 380V outlets for obvious reasons, that can fully charge a tesla in about 4 hours) and every city and municipality had to provide a certain number, you could go anywhere in a Tesla apart from very remote wilderness areas, which generally require specialized vehicles anyway, not a luxury sedan. Electricity is absolutely frigging everywhere, there are far more charging outlets than petrol stations, but most of them are in private homes and businesses. The public infrastructure for electric charging could be built out in a few months, if only lawmakers had the guts.

  • Arthur Doucette

    But Tesla S is hardly a car for the average driver.
    When the Model 3 finally comes out, several years from now, then we will see if the specs for a more reasonably priced vehicle will attract buyers.

  • Arthur Doucette

    Industry leader?
    Nissan has sold 85,000 Leafs and GM has sold 58,000 Volts to Tesla’s 52,000 Model S.

  • Arthur Doucette

    Tesla is losing more than $4,000 on every Model S electric sedan it sells, using its reckoning of operating losses, and it burned $359 million in cash last quarter in a bull market for luxury vehicles. The company on Wednesday cut its production targets for this year and next. Musk said he’s considering options to raise more capital, and didn’t rule out selling more stock.

    Tesla’s shares fell almost 9 percent on Thursday and slipped another 2 percent on Friday.

    Tesla had just $1.15 billion on hand as of June 30, down from $2.67 billion a year earlier.

  • Arthur Doucette

    The Model 3 is not aimed at people who buy cars that use premium gas.
    Gas in my neck of the woods is well below $2 gallon, so yes, low gas prices as well as lack of recharging infrastructure has an impact on sales of EVs.

  • 1C5

    You are correct about the majority of Tesla owners. However, there seems to be a strong undercurrent of promotion for BEV’s. Each day I turn on my computer and see a rash of Tesla missives … Tesla beats Hellcat … Tesla obliterates Ferrari … Tesla goes cross country …. Tesla shaves 2/10’s of a second from 0 – 60. I would like to see one practical article such as Tesla now features 400 miles of range under “normal” driving conditions with a 15 minute recharge. Toyota earned significant awards for developing regen braking. Delco developed and won awards for anti lock brakes. But even when these awards were fresh, one had to dig to find them. How many mature car buyers care whether or not a car can go 0 – 60 in 3 seconds?

    There are millions of Americans for whom a BEV will not be practical. Perhaps they cannot afford one. Anything other than a Tesla is certainly more of a city commuter. Perhaps they live in an apartment with no convenient charge points? Perhaps they live in a figurative Northern location like Boulder Junction where it is cold and meaningful charge points are non existent. Have you seen photos of long, endless roads in Montana, Utah or Arizona? For sure they would be lonely places with only a battery. An ICE in one form or another can reliably manage any of these locations. I think the major push toward BEV’s is premature. Currently, they will not work for millions of Americans.

    I look forward to clean efficient electric motors as much as anyone. However I will not presume to know what will power those motors. Right now, BEV’s are not mainstream, all purpose cars. Alaska and other examples are simply illustrations to demonstrate that. In a niche, Tesla’s are great cars. I’ve driven an 85D many times and if I had an incredible amount of disposable income I would buy one and use it for the daily commute, enjoying every mile. On week-end outings, we would take our SUV.

  • Dean

    The 2-2.5 years timeframe for the roll out of the Model 3 coincide with the completion and fully operational battery giga-factory in Nevada. Model 3 will depend from this factory on its power supply

  • Andrew

    Following the crowd? Tesla is the industry leader, and this article is talking about the future of Tesla and the industry. Here’s a real suggestion; why don’t you find something worthwhile to say and stop being critical for no reason.

  • PoweredByRice

    The majority of Tesla’s customers will not be facing the extreme conditions and driving distances in Alaska, so your example is a bit curious.

  • Bobby

    CapEx arthur…its a thing if you arent a sodden old car company.

  • Bobby

    Capital expenditures…look up that set of words. When they have built out the factories and charging stations they need yes the balance sheet will swing WILDLY the other way.

  • 1C5

    Tesla’s are great cars but they’re limited by battery technology. As bad as gas is, ICE’s provide reliable transportation from Barrow Alaska to Edmonton Canada to Alpena Michigan and the Mojave Desert. No BEV can do that. Persons in Boulder Junction WI can purchase an ICE, expecting reliable service for “11.5” years. A person in Boulder Junction who purchases a BEV will find disappointment. They live in an area with long distances, cold temps and it is a charge point wilderness. What will they and 1,000’s of others use to get where they need to go? How do you think they feel about all this electric fluff?

    Batteries. Lithium Ion was developed to run laptops and flashlights in the early 90’s. However fast forwarding to 2015, one can see Li-Ion lacks energy density just by looking at the 1,200 lb battery a Tesla S must carry to achieve 220 miles of range (Consumer Reports, under “normal” driving conditions). That range will diminish significantly in single digit temps. Tesla owners in their own forum have reported 30 – 33% in very cold temps while using the heat and running at Interstate speeds. Therefore, a driver going cross country on Interstate 90, in winter, may not have enough range to make it between superchargers spaced at 170 miles. How would you feel traveling I-90 in January with your family in the car? You might choose to turn off the heat and slow to 55MPH. There are currently about 200 supercharger locations in the US. They must cover 3.8 million miles of roads. They’re not everywhere.

    Tesla has accomplished a great deal to get the most out of Li-Ion batteries. Battery manufacturers have produced many variants with different strengths and liabilities. The NCA derivative Tesla now uses has better energy density than the Li-Co used in the original Roadster but runs hot causing Tesla to develop the water jacket to keep the pack in check.

    Each week we read about many new “breakthroughs” that will provide incredible range and fast charges. Still, Li-Ion is the only technology that has PROVEN itself adaptable to mass production. That is why the gigafactory is tooling up to produce Li-Ion batteries. Work continues to wring more energy density from Li-Ion batteries but Chemists have run into technical challenges. That is why if any new battery idea gains traction it will have to undergo years of extensive experimentation and practical testing before it will ever hit the street. No company, including Tesla/Panasonic will spend billions of dollars retooling their gigafactory, changing processes and supply lines without proof of concept and more. Most chemists say the process will take 10 years. So, while science will likely wriggle a bit more energy from Li-Ion batteries that is what we will have for a time with its attendant limitations.

    For all of us it is evident gas has to go. But while its here it packs a tremendous energy punch. 10 gallons of gas has as much energy density as 7 fully charged 85kW batteries. Sadly, in an ICE much of that energy is wasted, but it still enables an ICE to outperform any BEV on long cross country trips. Gas cars will persist for many decades. What green cars will replace them? I sure don’t know. But I think a major transition will not occur until green cars can at least approximate the capability and affordability of ICE’s.

  • Bryan

    Great, now charge all these EVs with new Hyper X 2 bifacial, (double sided) solar panels technology with it’s competition crushing 94.3% PTC to STC ratio and up to a 22.2% module efficiency rating. Instead of ugly, single sided framed solar panels, Hyper X 2 uses double sided, glass on glass see through, frameless solar panels with a much better temperature coefficient that offers a better PTC to STC ratio than over 118 SunPower modules listed on the CEC’s government website. Check out the Teslasolar website to learn more.

  • btc909

    Typical “burning through cash trolls” yet this trolls always neglect to mention without the GigaFactory the Model X in large production numbers would not be possible & the Model 3 wouldn’t even exist at around 35K.

    As the cost of the batteries drop so should the price of the S & the X.

  • Ferdinand

    Will Tesla keep losing money on this car too…assuming it ever actually gets to production?

  • Chuck Underwood

    Sure, R & D burns a lot of cash, which other car makers don’t do enough of. Tesla’s cars take a long time to hit the market place but have very few recalls.
    If Arthur thinks gas prices are staying low from now on, he must be living in a fantasy world.

  • peter904

    Arthur. Yes launching a new model and building infrastructure is capital intensive.
    IMO, the price of gasoline and diesel is less critical to Tesla. Premium gasoline in So. CA is about $3.75 per gallon and 20 cents less for 89 octane. Even at $2.75 a gallon charging a Tesla at home (at night) is a fraction of the price of a tank of gas. Cheap gas helps big trucks and CUV owners. When gas gets expensive small cars sell at low discounts and guzzlers sell due to big discounts.
    Eventually, State and Federal governments will focus on raising the gasoline tax to fund infrastructure and impose road use tax at registration for BEVs. No matter how high or low gasoline prices may seem to us in the US, they are twice as much in every other industrial country in the world.

  • Arthur Doucette

    Tesla is burning through cash like a drunken sailor.
    The fact that gas is, and will remain cheap for some time, can’t help.

  • Objective

    Another puff piece on Tesla… from a video gamer, no less! What credentials! Why don’t you find something worth writing about, instead of just following the crowd?