Published: Tue, August 01, 2017
Hi-Tech | By Ellis Neal

Tesla delivers first lower-cost Model 3 cars

Tesla delivers first lower-cost Model 3 cars

While the models start out at $35,000 you have only the choice of the color black at that price.

"We followed up with the company later and found Tesla would not commit to the figure the CEO gave other than to confirm that Musk did in fact provide it to the media", KeyBanc analyst Brad Erickson wrote to clients on Sunday. This conclusion assumes that Tesla vehicles continue to sell at their current rate, that Elon Musk's tweets and company production charts are accurate, and that the Model 3 doesn't experience any serious manufacturing delays.

Deliveries kicked off Friday night with the company's usual amount of fanfare. How to say Tesla, these cars can all do without human intervention.

Shares of Tesla Inc. rose almost 2% on Monday, the first market session after the Silicon Valley auto maker launched the Model 3, its electric vehicle aimed at the masses, and promised a fast ramp-up for the sedan's production.

To finish the event, the first 30 cars built were lined up outside the factory and handed over to customers.

WARNING: "Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA) Upgraded to "Strong-Buy" at Vetr Inc." was first published by The Cerbat Gem and is owned by of The Cerbat Gem. They believe that the preorder number is now "the most important metric and basis for the stock".

Tesla's stock was down $11.85 at $323.21 at mid-afternoon.

The most important aspect of Tesla right now remains the Model 3. But how about all the other cars that are more than a year old?

The new "2170" li-ion battery cells, manufactured by Panasonic at Tesla's Gigafactory 1 in Sparks, Nevada, are a key part of the Tesla's Model 3 battery architecture. The site now says: "Reserve your Model 3 today for delivery in 12 to 18 months". And with that capability, the Model 3 is priced from a less budget-friendly $49,000.

"For battery cells for the Model 3, costs outweighed profit in the first quarter", financial chief Hirokazu Umeda said at an earnings briefing. It is capable of 0-60mph in 5.6 seconds and a top speed of 130mph, but can also last for 220 miles on one charge.

Minimalism is order of the day with the Model 3, particularly with the interior. All the controls are in the touchscreen display in the center console, but the KeyBanc team questions whether some will see this as Tesla just being cheap.

It's not exactly surprising since nearly any new product undergoes a money losing period, but the company expects to quickly turn its Gigafactory venture into a profit center. The Model 3 showed no noticeable changes from its earlier test versions.

Squeamish about producing non-luxury cars??

Tesla didn't respond to our request for comment. For example, Bernstein analyst Toni Sacconaghi described Musk as sounding "increasingly squeamish about the production ramp", especially when it comes to producing the least-expensive variants of the auto.

Wednesday will be a bit early to get a handle on how well production is going, or sales for that matter, but founder Elon Musk is not once to pass up the opportunity to provide a sound-bite or two (thousand), so there will nearly certainly be an upbeat outlook statement from him.

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