For some background, in case you missed it, Elon Musk and the Tesla Motors crew announced during the company’s quarterly financials call ~2½ weeks ago that the Model X would be delayed… for (I think) the 4th time (it’s hard to keep track). A clear case of Hofstadter’s Law. Since then, Model X reservation holders have also received an email about the delay. Right after the initial announcement a couple of weeks ago, I put out a poll on whether or not the delay was a good or bad decision. Simple arguments both ways: good because it allows Tesla to do a better job and avoid potential issues; bad because it’s been delayed for years and there are ~23,000 reservations for the thing.
I asked two other questions that I think were even more interesting:
- Do you think the Model 3 will actually arrive in 2017?
- Do you think Tesla should protect itself from rabid media or report monthly deliveries by country?
Well, the people (of CleanTechnica) have voted, and we’ve got some pretty clear results. Starting with the one with the smallest spread and ending with the biggest blowout, here they are:
Do you think the Model 3 will actually arrive in 2017?
Approximately 37.5% of respondents think the Model 3 will be on time and actually arrive in 2017, the year Elon Musk has repeatedly said it would hit the market. 62.5% don’t have as much faith.
Do you think Tesla should protect itself from rabid media or report monthly deliveries by country?
For people like me who report monthly electric car sales forecasts, it’s very frustrating to not have the full numbers, and even more frustrating to not have the numbers for one of the highest selling and for sure the most popular of the models. With sales reported quarterly and not broken out by country or even region, it has become impossible for an outsider to nail down a sales number from one month to the next, or even come close. This is why we keep seeing articles where people come to wild conclusions, like one from Merrill Lynch that Tesla is sitting on 3,000 unsold cars. That completely goes against what Elon and crew have repeatedly said — that Tesla has far more demand than it can currently fulfill.
The problem, according to Tesla, is that it ships cars to North America one month, Europe another month, and Asia yet another month. So, if it started to report monthly sales figures by country or region, Elon thinks that the media would go even more crazy and come to even more absurd conclusions… not just in the US but all around the world.
69% of respondents to my poll agreed with the answer, “Nah, stick to what you’re doing, Fox News & gang be crazy.” Meaning that 31% agreed with the opposite sentiment: “Be brave, report your deliveries!”
Is the decision to delay the Model X in order to make it even better than it would be today a good or bad decision?
The results regarding the Model X delay were clear as day: Tesla made the right call to delay the Model X until late 2015. 87% said that was a good decision, while 13% said it was a bad decision.
Overall, it looks like the majority is supportive of some of Tesla’s more controversial decisions, but it still doesn’t trust Tesla’s planned timeline for production of the Model 3… not to mention the Gigafactory.