Tesla Motors Inc VP: Model 3 Preorders ‘Approaching’ 400,000

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Tesla previously confirmed in a blog post that it received 325,000 Model 3 reservations. Just a week later, Tesla’s Vice-President of Business Development, Diarmuid O’Connell, who was in Amsterdam for the AVERE E-mobility Conference, says that “something approaching 400,000 people” have already reserved the vehicle.

The real success will be delivery

O’Connell, a long-time Tesla executive and one of the company’s first 50 employees, gave a brief presentation before doing a Q&A with the audience, says a report from Electrek. The positive response from the public boosted the confidence of the EV firm in investing in its third-generation vehicle, said the VP. But he added that there is an even more essential consequence of the reservations received.

“It delivers a message to the industry that there’s incredible demand for great electric vehicles out there,” the executive said.

O’Connell further underlined the upcoming pickup truck that has been brought up in interviews before by Musk. A few other interesting subjects, including vehicle-to-grid technology, the automaker’s competition, Tesla Energy, and more were also discussed by the VP, the report said.

Will the Model 3 be available on time?

During the Q&A, someone asked how the electric carmaker plans to deliver on all those preorders, considering its spotty history in delivering its electric vehicles. O’Connell probably expected this question.

“It’s a success as far as it is right now. The real success will be delivering a great product at the volumes are possible and necessary,” answered O’Connell.

Then he quoted CEO Elon Musk on his plans to increase production following the higher-than-expected reservations.

Tesla has learned a lot from the Model S and Model X production ramps, said O’Connell. They will use these lessons to get to higher volumes quicker. The electric carmaker also plans to expand its lineup following the Model 3, said O’Connell.

GM mocks Tesla Model 3

Tesla’s production woes have been known by all, including rival GM, which recently mocked the Model 3.

Talking of the Chevy Bolt as superior to the Model 3, General Motors’ Vice President of Global Propulsion Systems, Dan Nicholson, said, “It will have more than 200 miles of range and it will be in production by the end of 2016, so it’s not necessary to put down $1,000 and wait until 2018 or some time after that.”

On Thursday, Tesla shares closed down 1.05% at $251.86. Year to date, the stock is up by almost 6%, while in the last year, it is up by over 19%.

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