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Making Tesla profitable?

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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby EdwinSm » Sat 08 Jul 2017, 00:21:13

Will that battery be given away free, or can it be installed in time?

The billionaire entrepreneur, who first expressed interest in the project over Twitter in March, promised to stick by his pledge to have the system installed and operating within 100 days from signing a contract "or it is free".
{From the link in the previous posting}
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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Sat 08 Jul 2017, 11:58:24

EdwinSm wrote:Will that battery be given away free, or can it be installed in time?

The billionaire entrepreneur, who first expressed interest in the project over Twitter in March, promised to stick by his pledge to have the system installed and operating within 100 days from signing a contract "or it is free".
{From the link in the previous posting}

I'm suspicious about the 100 day claim. The target date for completion isn't until December. So I'm supposed to believe they can't sign a contract for MONTHS yet, even though the plan is in place and the conceptual drawings have been made? So what, no lawyers work in the summer? (Or Winter in Australia)? LOL

Or are they giving Tesla months of up front prep time so Musk can claim he made his 100 day (marketing) commitment?

Don't get me wrong. I think what Tesla is doing as a company is great. I just don't like the seemingly constant over-the-top three ring circus level marketing spree that Musk produces via twitter. (i.e. that a couple fairly common driving aids (active cruise control and lane keeping) are "Autopilot").

If it were Trump, he'd be accused of being an ignorant liar instead of a genius visionary.

But apparently if they wait to sign the contracts until Tesla says it's ready, then they can do the job in 100 days, or it's free. OK, so I guess that prevents Tesla from playing the usual contractor game of being very late and getting away with it.
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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby Shaved Monkey » Sat 08 Jul 2017, 22:01:50

I think it has to be up and running before the Summer peak when people come home from work and all turn on their aircons at once.

In the UK the peaks are ad breaks when everyone turns on the kettles at once for a cuppa tea
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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Sat 29 Jul 2017, 17:41:34

What do folks think about the recent Model 3 announcements with the 30 day Model 3 rollout party, re Tesla profitability in the next year or three?

I read some articles and discussions, and noticed a LOT of disappointment from fans and claimed Model 3 reservation holders.

Some high points (my understanding).

1). The base car is actually $35,000, so that promise is kept. And the EPA estimated range on that is 220 miles. So the range promise is likely real. And the 5.6 second 0-60 time is good but not stellar.

2). OTOH, inside it's a real disappointment. IMO, it makes my basic 2017 Camry look rocket-ship like in comparison. Like no speedometer, except on the center screen, so you can't check your speed in an easy or comfortable way.

3). You can't GET a $35,000 car for some time now. More like $45,000 and up, since they will only sell it with the (horrendously expensive) $9,000 "big" battery to up the range to 310 miles. Also, any color but black is a cool $1,000 option. And many highly desirable options are buried in packages costing $5,000 or so.

4). So sorry, but for the forseeable future you can't HAVE a $35,000 Model 3, and an even mediocre one re how it is equipped looks to run more like $50,000 -- which I no longer call a middle class car.

(I was hoping that would get me two motors, a sub 4 second 0-60 time, and key options like the big battery, autopilot, etc. for $50,000ish at most. That's not happening any time soon, apparently).

5). So now it looks like folks settle for less than expected, wait longer than expected and hope prices and choices improve, or wait and watch competitors.

6). If function over style is important, the Chevy Bolt suddenly looks a lot better. Chevy has them piling up on lots per various articles, so they are available. Supposedly officially available in all 50 states (or close) in September or so anyway (though I've learned not to trust GM on such statements). So -- interesting. It looks like real world, even the hapless GM might be a solid competitor for many customers. What happens when other makers start catching up with their own 200+ mile range models in a few years or so?

7). Now there is lots of chatter on the discussion boards about looking for good used model S's, and that Musk is continuing to upsell the (much more expensive) Model S. Which calls into question the whole "mass market, middle priced car" claim for the Model 3, real world.

8 ). So, it looks like though Tesla can make the Model 3 (unknown how fast or at what quality once real volume is produced) -- but how many will want it at the price/functionality level offered?

9). So, it looks to me like the current stock price, expecting Tesla to "crush it" in the Model 3 in 2017, might get hit somewhat. Not that I'm ever right about such opinions, and I don't own the stock, BTW.

...

But it's fun to munch the popcorn, speculate, and observe.


There's lots of stuff out there, but this seemed like a decent summary.

http://www.autoblog.com/2017/07/29/tesl ... g-options/
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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby Cog » Sat 29 Jul 2017, 18:22:06

Very tempted to short Tesla stock.
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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby baha » Sat 29 Jul 2017, 20:37:07

I'm in for the long term. I didn't make my goal of 100% growth by the end of the month but that's ok. I know there is a lot of hype around the Model 3 right now but you need to keep in mind Tesla is more than a car company.

My Powerwall is supposed to ship next week. I had to wait until they had filled some of the demand in Hawaii, where you cannot put power on the grid. These things are also selling as fast as he can make them.

My wife wants a Model 3 one day...or maybe a used Model S. But I am only interested in the battery technology. If the Powerwall goes mainstream so does Solar PV :) But it's more than that. I am waiting for that 'does what I want' moment to buy a battery pack for my antique VW. I am fixed on 200 mile range for about $10k. I need about 50 kilowatt-hours so $200/kW-hr. It won't be long now.https://electrek.co/2017/01/30/electric ... la-190kwh/

Which brings me back to my point. Tesla has the potential to be a fully integrated power and transportation solutions company. The next generation XOM + GM. Make the power, store the power, and use the power in your everyday life.

Given the recent stock valuations and market capitalizations there are more people than just me who think so.
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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby Plantagenet » Sat 29 Jul 2017, 20:55:59

baha wrote:Which brings me back to my point. Tesla has the potential to be a fully integrated power and transportation solutions company. The next generation XOM + GM. Make the power, store the power, and use the power in your everyday life.


Yup. Tesla might someday actually be profitable. That is, if the evil AI killer robots Elon Musk is so paranoid about don't get to Musk first.

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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby baha » Sat 29 Jul 2017, 21:18:20

Elon stated many years ago his goal was to make EVs go mainstream. No one can argue he has not reached that goal...http://www.businessinsider.com/15-elect ... -of-2017-1

P - I think Elon must surf Peakoil.com occasionally :) That just makes me like him more.
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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby baha » Sun 30 Jul 2017, 05:47:37

Hey Dude,
If your out there...my resume is on file in Charlotte :)

I haven't given up yet...
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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Sun 30 Jul 2017, 11:58:52

Cog wrote:Very tempted to short Tesla stock.

Please, for the love of whatever you care lots about, don't do it because of my post -- and especially don't be mad at me if you decide to anyway. (There, I said it, so now I can sleep with a clean conscience).

I read some more articles / reviews out of curiosity as to how the press / fans would morph the results of the announcements after 24 hours or so.

There is now a LOT of positive spinning, raving about how well the car drives (low body roll, low center of gravity, great steering, etc., "amazing" power, etc.) The spinning of Tesla fans and the fawning press is a wonder to behold. (If Trump could employ that kind of fan power Musk has, he could lie all he wanted and the liberals could cry all they wanted, and it wouldn't matter to his political career).

And the prices of the options, while objectively very high as pointed out by some of the more objective articles from the car review mags, are being downplayed as though they don't matter.

And some videos / pics of the cars (like a bright red one I saw) look VERY nice from the outside, and again, the inside is being strongly downplayed, or spun as a good/futuristic thing. And of course, for the people making legit complaints about the interior/features/cost, then you have MANY fans saying (in the comment threads for various articles) something along the lines of: "Musk is a car genius. You are not. He knows best. He is destined to be successful, so the Model 3 is going to be a fantastic success." (I wish I were making this up, but I'm not. It has an eerie feel of a religious cult when you read such comments).

So hell. The stock could jump, and even climb a lot next week. As usual -- I HAVE NO IDEA. Meanwhile the objective fact is that these things look to cost up to $60,000 nicely appointed -- BEFORE we get into any dual engines or serious performance versions. (So are we talking near $100,000 for the fast version I was hoping to see for $50,000? If so, I'd rather buy a damn Bolt, even though I HATE GM with a passion, due to its quality/service reputation.)

And objectively, to me, once you get outside the fan noise and the hype, you can NOT reasonably call a Model 3 a "middle class car" or a "car for the masses" IF the price will be well above $40,000. Especially once the federal tax credits are cut in half (and then go away). The fans can spin the "fuel savings" all they want, but if gasoline is near $2 a gallon, you're not going to save $20,000+, much less $40,000ish on gasoline and oil changes for a LOT of miles.

Oh, and that reminds me -- I was surprised to see a 100,000 mile limitation on the battery warranty. The one with the new fancy cells that's supposed to be better. So unlike the Model S, with no mileage limits, Tesla is limiting the battery warranty to a very pedestrian amount of miles. So much for being so radically far ahead of the competition. (What are they afraid of. To me, this was the biggest negative tell of all -- naturally, 99% of people are completely ignoring this or defending it as industry standard).

...

And this is an example of why, to me, it's impractical to try to make predictions about what stocks will do in the short run. (Or the long run, LOL). But at least for me, selling OTM options against stocks I want to hold long term helps goose the income over time, and the probability of success, but I stay away from the really wild stuff like TSLA or AMZN stock (but not option spreads, see disclosure below). Just too volatile/risky for my blood.

.....

Disclosure: I'm a fan of green energy and wish Tesla success. Don't confuse my reservations about Tesla's marketing hype, stock valuation, etc. as AGW denialism or being a green hater. I'm just trying to think / share what might be reasonable to expect from Tesla as an EV maker vs. other EV makers over the next several years, because I'm a fan of EV's succeeding in coming decades. Tesla is objectively the leader currently -- so it's disappointing (to me) to see how expensive the Model 3 looks to be when it has all the gee whiz tech that Tesla fans constantly rave about and IMO, have come to expect from a Tesla.

And again, I hold no shares of Tesla stock, and have no plans to (long or short).

I have started trading some small put options spread positions, once the model 3 looked like a serious reality late this spring (making me assume they'll survive, at least for several years). I'm simply selling short term volatility, hedged by longer term (lower) volatility. I don't really care where the price goes in the moderate term, as long as it stays volatile and doesn't rapidly go insane in either direction for months, without pullbacks. This is fairly typical of the kind of volatility trade I do, with the (10% max) active part of my portfolio. (It's good fun for bored cowards, as I can't lose too much on any trade, and the math favors me (I think) for the long run).
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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby pstarr » Sun 30 Jul 2017, 12:02:28

So the Tesla really is a bomb. Not da bomb! . . . but a . . . self-immolating failure?
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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Sun 30 Jul 2017, 12:15:45

pstarr wrote:So the Tesla really is a bomb. Not da bomb! . . . but a . . . self-immolating failure?

Did anyone say anything like that? It does have a radically different (and to me weird and unsafe, given that the ONLY interface is a large, complex, touch screen away from the windshield view) interface, and an austere interior. OTOH, the fans love it, and mechanically it appears fine -- IF they can build it that way in volume. (Oh, one's smart phone is also an interface for many settings. In fact, you HAVE to have a smart phone app -- since it's the key to the car. That's another thing I don't like, but apparently the tech savvy fan base that doesn't worry about things like cyber security or tech glitches loves it).

The real disappointment, IMO, is the very high cost of the options that (I strongly suspect) almost everyone will want a lot.

So there's a real question about longer term demand at the CURRENT prices, IMO. I think it will be years before we can say whether they are a success or a failure. We don't know about quality under high volume production. We don't know about price decreases (and margin impacts) under high volume production. We don't know about coming technology improvements (aside from Musk's endless hype) in the next few years.

Of course, a "self immolating failure" would be consistent with your past claims here that Tesla is a "fraud" and doomed to fail. Too much hype? Yes. Signs of such fraud? No objective ones I've seen.

As always, I could be wrong. This is just my opinion as one who has been paying attention for the past several months.
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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby baha » Sun 30 Jul 2017, 13:20:54

Elon is a smart guy. He knows his techie customers aren't going to drive a bare-bones black car. So add $6k for a $1k paint job and another $6k to plug a comm board into the CPU and suddenly your making profit.

He does what he said with the bare bones car and makes money off the rest. Kind of like SUVs with 700 HP. But in the end prices will fall and we will all benefit.
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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby EdwinSm » Mon 31 Jul 2017, 00:38:55

I don't know the costs for all the factories and development cost and how the income will balance it out. But I ran some calculations and there should be a good income stream.
BBC wrote:The first 30 customers - most of them employees of the company - received their cars on Friday.....

The company aims to produce 5,000 units of the Model 3 a week in 2017, and 10,000 a week by 2018
http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-40762328

The first 30 cars if sold at the minimum price with no extras would bring in over $1 million.

By the end of the year, if they can sell 5 000 units a week should bring in at least $175 million a week, and double that next year.

That sounds like serious income, but will it be enough to cover the investments made?
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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby Cog » Mon 31 Jul 2017, 03:35:46

@outcast I said I was tempted to short Tesla, not that I would be stupid enough to try it. The arena is full of short sellers of Tesla who have been slaughtered on what looks like a good play. I don't intend to be one of the them.

The company is fundamentally flawed and I do believe it will all come crashing down on long term investors, especially if Ford and GM make serious inroads into EV's. Nothing, and I mean nothing is holding this stock price up there but hype.
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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby pstarr » Mon 31 Jul 2017, 12:34:09

Tesla will never be profitable, not when it takes 4 hours for a complete charge off a normal (240 v) residential circuits. Three-phase 480 volt fast charger (cost: $2,000) requires an additional $3000-$7000 electric service upgrade.

Perhaps when it gets a complete brain infusion? Call me when Tesla is able to pick up the kids up from soccer practice, and run to the store for a quart of milk. Yippee! More TV time!
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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby Plantagenet » Mon 31 Jul 2017, 12:40:54

Elon Musk just admitted he suffers from bipolar disorder and can't deal with stress

elon-musk-is-bipolar-and-suffers-from-unrelenting-stress-he-reveals-in-astonishingly-honest-tweets

Thats not the ideal personality profile for someone trying to finally execute and deliver on years of overblown promises. I hope Mr. Musk can hold it together in the difficult days ahead for Tesla.

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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Mon 31 Jul 2017, 12:47:38

Cog wrote:@outcast I said I was tempted to short Tesla, not that I would be stupid enough to try it. The arena is full of short sellers of Tesla who have been slaughtered on what looks like a good play. I don't intend to be one of the them.

The company is fundamentally flawed and I do believe it will all come crashing down on long term investors, especially if Ford and GM make serious inroads into EV's. Nothing, and I mean nothing is holding this stock price up there but hype.

Well, I generally agree with you.

However, there's hype from Musk. But there's a HELL of a lot of what I'll call "willful blindness" from the Tesla fanboi faithful types. A large percentage of them refuse to even accept the reality of any reasoned issue (like the model 3 options looking MIGHTY expensive for a "for the masses / middle class" car, when you get to $50K to $60K real quick when you add the desirable options that Tesla fans consider "a Tesla".) Even though the Model 3 (and Y, etc) success with the middle class is supposedly required for Tesla to survive in the coming years.

It will be interesting to me to see what happens when we get to December. Musk has declared being able to produce 20,000 Model 3's in December WITH QUALITY as his benchmark for 2017 success on the model 3.

That's an objective benchmark. If they don't come close to that, the bears will be more bearish, and the faithful? And 42,000 in 12/2018 (a rate of 500K a year), and double that in 12/2019 isn't exactly trivial to achieve.

It could be a long time before the stock reflects rationality, unless things overwhelmingly go right AND they get the volume sales they need over time (which I don't see unless the major option prices come down a LOT).

It will be interesting to see how quickly the makers like BMW, Mercedes, GM, Nissan, etc. come up with SERIOUS competition. (Aside from range, the Bolt isn't exactly exciting, nor is the 2nd gen LEAF, IMO).

But I'm like you. I wouldn't naked short that monster -- no way.
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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby pstarr » Mon 31 Jul 2017, 13:00:17

At least Tesla's ridiculous valuation is not as huge and stupid as Facebooks ridiculous $500 billion valuation.

($trillion company that is unable to make a profit, within its current business model. It will need to charge a subscription fee which in itself will crash the entire stock market)
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Re: Making Tesla profitable?

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Mon 31 Jul 2017, 13:03:37

Plantagenet wrote:Elon Musk just admitted he suffers from bipolar disorder and can't deal with stress

elon-musk-is-bipolar-and-suffers-from-unrelenting-stress-he-reveals-in-astonishingly-honest-tweets

Thats not the ideal personality profile for someone trying to finally execute and deliver on years of overblown promises. I hope Mr. Musk can hold it together in the difficult days ahead for Tesla.

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Maybe. Or maybe this is his "aw shucks" Warren Buffett persona. You know, the "I'm a billionaire mover and shaker, but really, I'm just a humble, simple guy" routine.

Given all the hype behind Musk, I wouldn't put that past him. Given how dishonest many companies are, if he's honest aside from that -- I can't even be critical, in comparison.

Don't get me wrong. I don't like the Musk hype machine. I ***HATE*** the fact that Tesla keeps calling a couple driving aids "Autopilot", and that they refuse to tone that down, even with calls of credible outfits like Consumer Reports calling them out on it and asking them to change the name -- for the cause of safety.

Of course, what goes around comes around. Part of that hype has him continue to claim that Tesla will have fully autonomous cars in a few years. They are selling Tesla Model 3 options priced at $11,000 that are required to use the car in autonomous mode. (They do have legal disclosures to cover their ass when it doesn't happen for a decade or more, I notice. But the $11,000? All indications are they keep that. Nice racket. But how will THAT play to the fan base down the road?)

Even if he doesn't have a stress problem now, ironically, down the road, IMO, the hype machine will cause him and Tesla LOTS of stress, unless everything goes just right with the Model 3 AND things like fully autonomous cars being allowed unfettered on all US roads within say, 5 years.

What are the odds of everything going right, given the options price list just revealed and the lack of real progress (vs hype) on a truly autonomous Autopilot? (For one thing, he CLAIMS the model 3 has all the hardware needed. Since know one KNOWS what will be needed to solve all the problems to reach true full autonomy approved by the laws/regulators -- that's more hype).
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