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Tesla delivered 50,580 EVs in 2015; 17,400 in Q4 2015

Tesla delivered 50,580 EVs in 2015 across all its markets; its Q4 deliveries consisted of 17,192 Model S vehicles and 208 Model X vehicles. (507 Model X vehicles were produced during Q4 with the remainder to be delivered in early Q1.)

Q4 Model S deliveries were approximately 48% more than the company’s prior quarterly record and approximately 75% more than Q4 2014. Tesla said that its Model X deliveries are in line with the very early stages of production ramp. The daily production rate in the last week of 2015 tracked to production of 238 Model X vehicles per week.

Tesla said there may be small changes to this delivery count (usually well under 1%), as Tesla only counts a delivery if it is transferred to the end customer and all paperwork is correct.


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Tesla is now the world's largest producer of plug-ins. With 50,000 Model S deliveries for 2015 they beat Nissan Leaf that land at about 45,000 for 2015 globally. Tesla could be making 80,000 for all of 2016 with about 55000 model S and 25000 model x. Those 50k are selling at an average of 100k USD a piece so the turnover is 5 billion USD. That is a lot and will significantly help Tesla fund its own expansion. Tesla is rapidly becoming a multibillion USD company. The giga factory has also begun production of energy packs and I expect the 4th qt report will have more to say about that which also has potential to become a multibillion USD business for Tesla.

Nick Lyons

Those 50k are selling at an average of 100k USD a piece so the turnover is 5 billion USD. That is a lot and will significantly help Tesla fund its own expansion.

Last I heard, Tesla is still burning cash and losing money as an enterprise, so I'm not so sure about your math.


Musk is on record as saying Tesla will not turn a profit until 2020. No surprise that they're still investing every dollar they make in plant & equipment to ramp up volume to 500k/yr.

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Nick Tesla's gross profit is 25% or about 1 billion USD for 2015. They invest all of that and then some in order to keep growing at 50+ %. As long as Tesla can make 20 to 25% gross profit and grow at over 40% I am not worried that some additional capital has to be raised along the way. Tesla is raising most of their capital investments themselves through that sizable gross margin.


Nick Lyons

They are spending cash faster than they are taking it in--not sure how that amounts to self-funding.

Nick Lyons

Tesla seems to be operating much like a technology startup: be the first mover in a new space, grab market share, build scale while operating at a loss. They may be able to continue this mode as long as they are the darling of Wall Street and can use their stratospheric stock price as currency through repeated stock offerings to raise cash. This is a risky game for an automobile manufacturer, IMHO, and at the end of the day, that is what they are.

One of the keys to grabbing the first-mover advantage is to establish your technology as a standard in a new technology space, e.g. Microsoft cajoling IBM to adopt MS-Dos for the IBM PC back in the day. Owning the standard gives you a huge advantage for increasing returns--it's why Bill Gates is a zillionaire. DOS wasn't a particulary good PC operating system, but it was the standard. I don't see this kind of opportunity in the electric vehicle space--all it takes to compete is money and commitment.

Tesla has a head start, for sure, but they will eventually have to compete on a level playing field as others enter the space. And don't forget, there is also second-mover advantage: observe the leader, learn from his mistakes, steal his ideas and take advantage of his weaknesses.

I wish Tesla well, but they won't be a success as a mass-market auto manufacturer until they prove they can make a competitive, affordable car at a profit.


Like Nick said,

Tesla are operating like a tech startup.

Probably they are - except they do have desirable salable and profitable product?

There must be a real concern about second movers as nick points out. Tesla's approach and I.M.O. the correct psychological one for a confident and self assured operator is exactly the one Tesla under Musk's guidance has taken.
They makes their patents publicly available.
This is a bit like sharing your 'contrail/wake or dust' with the competition.
The competition (now colleagues) can make of it what they will and use it if they can.
If Tesla remain at the front of the wave, their place in the market is assured.
The consumers of technology at this level aren't looking to the second move knockoffs even if the economics are 'sound' especially as so much luxury brand loyalty and associated loyalty seems to be the only choice many consumers ever make. Political party choices are one such case.

Reading the GCC pages today around the world we see so much of the automotive industry is INVESTING in next G.
The few who remain in the past will be left there.

GM 's rideshare ventures,

Subaru (Fuji Heavy Industries, Ltd.), Mitsubishi Motors, Mazda Motor Corporation and Ford Motor Company are joining The Linux Foundation and AGL AUTO GRADE LINUX (sweet).

Volvo Cars and Ericsson developing intelligent media streaming for self-driving cars. etc etc etc.


Should read:
"luxury brand loyalty and associated marketing"

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I don't think Tesla will ever make and sell a mass market BEV because it is not possible because batteries simply cost too much. However, they will make a small self-driving taxi BEV that they will use to operate a global mass market transportation service charging about 20 cents per mile which is about half the price per mile of owning a cheap gasser. Tesla will also keep selling luxury cars that should all be fully self-driving by 2020.

If Tesla kept its growth below 10% per year they could pay handsome shareholder dividends. However, it is better to spend the money building production capacity to actually change the world for the better. Being small is meaningless if you want to save the world from pollution and traffic casualties as Tesla wants to do. So you grow as fast as humanly possible and that is about 50% per year. No other car maker is doing that.


An affordable, extended range, ultra quick charge mass produced TESLA + lower cost improved batteries may be the key to its future economic existence.

Will it (both) come by 2017/2018 or so?

If so, TESLA may be around for the long run!

Autonomous e-taxis will be built by many manufacturers because it makes so much economic common sens.


Henrik, do you believe if you say it often enough it will become true?

I generally appreciate your posts, but flogging the self driving taxi in every post is becoming monotonous.

I'm sure we will eventually see autonomous cars, but you'll be waiting a very long time. I have a friend who recently hit a deer in his auto-piloted Tesla. So many weird edge cases like that out there. Even in cases where a human driver would do no better, regulators and plaintiff attorneys will keep automatons off the road for a long time.

In the meantime, driver assist and complacency will kill a fair number of inattentive drivers and innocent pedestrians and fellow drivers. No doubt many will also be saved by auto braking. It will take a long time just to sort out the saved/killed statistics.

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ECI my belief that autonomous cars are coming in a few years are genuine. I am sincere with everybody although I may withhold information. I don't tell lies not even to kids. As I see it the signs are getting more obvious every year that autonomous cars are coming. You have now got autonomous vacuum cleaners and lawnmowers and Space X just succeeded making an autonomous space rocket. Wars are increasingly fought with largely autonomous drones. You drive a Model S but I guess you don't have the autopilot option. I read 98% of Tesla's customers for Q4,2015 ordered the autopilot option. That autopilot is hardware version 1, and the software is still beta version 1. It is like the iPhone 1 with beta iOS1. It totally sucks by today's standard yet that first iPhone was released just 7 years ago. I expect Tesla's autopilot to progress equally fast because the autopilot sensors will be updated on an annual basis and the software is updated on a quarterly basis. It is already very useful as it is but it will get much better in the coming years.

I do not see battery tech develop as quickly and I doubt we will ever go much below 100 USD per kwh. Once Tesla's 50Gwh factory is fully operational in 2020 Tesla will be at 130 to 150 USD per kwh at the pack level and it will get very hard to go further down in price going forward. The self-owned BEV does therefore not make sense for mass market adoption as it will need a 100 kwh battery pack costing at least 10,000 USD to have the all weather range that everyone can accept as a no compromise alternative to a cheap gasser costing 15,000 USD. The only economically viable solution is to share the high capital cost of the BEV among many and that means autonomous BEV taxis that can also save cost by being right sized. If you need transportation for one that is exactly what you get when you order such a ride using your Smartphone.

My excitement for autonomous cars is high because it will end oil and all the pollution that follows with it and it will also save most of the 1.2 million people that are killed every year in traffic accidents and millions more that are severely injured. Plus people will save an hour or more per day that can be used for better things than driving a car. I really cannot see any other technology that is equally important and that is so close to happen.


I agree with Henrik for future automated e-vehicles (not only e-taxis) but by 2025 or so.

The quality, cost and performances of rugged printed solid state batteries may improve faster than many expect during the next 10 years or so.

Of course 100+ kWh and most likely 150+ kWh units will be required for all weather e-vehicles.

Ultra quick (under 10 minutes) chargers will be developed and installed in the same timeframe.

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