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Published on February 25th, 2014 | by Christopher DeMorro

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Tesla Delays The Model X Until 2015

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February 25th, 2014 by  

Editor’s note: Elon Musk has long said that Model X production would start as a trickle in late 2014, with volume production happening in early 2015. As far as I’m aware, nothing has really changed on this front, but maybe I missed something. Also, before the repost, below is an embedded video of the Elon Musk interview. The whole interview is worth a listen, imho.

Originally published on Gas 2.

tesla-model-x-design

While Tesla has been on a seemingly unstoppable roll, designing the Tesla Model X has proven “damn hard”, delaying the all-electric SUV for another year. With production now pushed back until 2015, one has to wonder what sorts of difficulties the Tesla design team is running into.

In an interview with Bloomberg, Elon Musk said that it’s “damn hard to make an SUV…that is beautiful yet incredibly functional at the same time.” I wonder how much of the design woes center on what Musk called falcon-wing doors or the all-wheel drive system? It also answers the question of why the Tesla Model X wasn’t on display at the Detroit Auto Show this year, though there are other issues keeping the electric SUV from production.

Musk cited issues like focusing on Tesla Model S sales in China, and increasing battery production before building the Model X can begin. But obviously you can’t build a vehicle that doesn’t have a finalized design yet, and the fact that the Tesla Model X has been pushed back for another year could be indicative of other problems. Musk even takes some of the blame, noting that prototypes haven’t lived up to his own high standards.

The pressure is on Tesla to follow up the universally lauded Model S with an equally exceptional vehicle, and Musk knows it. It’s better to delay a design than to roll out a half-baked product, but keep in mind the Model X first debuted back in 2012, and was supposed to enter production last year. The fact that it’s 2014, and the design of the Model X apparently remains unsettled, and this is the second delay in as many years, isn’t what I’d call good news. But better to be late and right, than on time and all wrong.

There’s plenty of other issues to keep fans occupied though, from the proposed battery gigafactory to the installation of battery-swapping stations. As for the Tesla Model X? Looks like we’ll just have to wait another year.

Source: Bloomberg

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About the Author

A writer and gearhead who loves all things automotive, from hybrids to HEMIs, can be found wrenching or writing- or esle, he's running, because he's one of those crazy people who gets enjoyment from running insane distances.



  • jonnyg

    I suspect and I would be happy if it is due to improvement in the falcon wing doors. Maybe he is trying to fit the wing doors enclosed or change the angle so that the roof top is available for cargo. If so, this suvwill likely win the best suv in America.

  • No way

    We all knew that it wasn’t going into production before 2015. But the interesting question is rather when in 2015. Because if it’s pushed back a year then the production won’t start until december 2015 or early 2016.

  • Kyle Field

    Elon Musk is like a nice Steve Jobs. But it could be that niceness (vs Jobs’ infamous not so nice tendencies) that’s allowing schedule slides like this. Steve would have had the heads of his whole team on stakes before he stood up in front of the world and delayed a product or delivered an inferior product (at least that was the perception). At least we know Elon will deliver a high quality product that exceeds expectations.

    Given the substantial positive impact the X will have on the world EV market and to positively impact climate change, I’m honestly not sure if I would rather have a mean CEO that would have cranked this thing out on time vs a nice guy. I always put myself in an employees shoes and try to feel it out that way. Elon’s too likeable…I’ll take him how he is :)

    • Matt

      Yea he could be mean a stick it to the China market like other Lux car brands and then use that money to … It is an integrity thing. But the some would say charge the max the
      market will take is the only way to go.
      Not knowing the for the delay it is hard to say the slapping the design staff would have help anyway.

    • http://zacharyshahan.com/ Zachary Shahan

      I think the main issue is the supply constraints. The battery supply just hasn’t come through. Now they have to put all this attention into building a gigafactory.

      And as Stefano noted above: “Victims of their own sucess. They cant meet the demand for the model S, if they make the model X without the necessary supply chain then waiting lists will be forever.”

      But yeah, sort of like a nice Steve Jobs. I’ll take Elon :D

      • Kyle Field

        Good point. I had assumed that with Nissan being able to scale up production, Tesla would also be able to. The good news then is that they are both pushing the real constraint in the supply chain and that there is more demand (active and latent) than the market can currently bear.

  • StefanoR99

    Victims of their own sucess. They cant meet the demand for the model S, if they make the model X without the necessary supply chain then waiting lists will be forever.

    • http://zacharyshahan.com/ Zachary Shahan

      Indeed.

  • http://electrobatics.wordpress.com/ arne-nl

    Mr DeMorro should change his profile photo. He’s looking like a terrorist.

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