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Tesla Sales Forecasts for 2021

Two months ago, Tesla released its 1st quarter production and delivery totals, which were well above what Wall Street analysts were expecting. Shortly thereafter, I published my somewhat detailed Tesla sales forecast (i.e., delivery forecast) for 2021. Troy Teslike — who tracks Tesla delivery ships, factory production news, and production line intel much more closely than I do — published his even more detailed forecast at almost the same time, so I followed up with a piece comparing his forecast to mine.

Since then, CleanTechnica‘s Maarten Vinkhuyzen has also put out a quarter-by-quarter and model-by-model forecast, and Troy recently published an updated forecast. So, it’s time for a fresh, new, bigger-than-ever Tesla sales forecast. Let’s roll into it.

Overall, my forecast from two months ago projects a somewhat bigger 2nd quarter for Tesla than Troy is forecasting (18,000 more deliveries), and Maarten’s prediction is 10,000 above mine. All of the parts supply shortages — which are even now pushing up prices of some vehicle models and getting certain features delayed or removed — seem like they must be slowing down Tesla growth to some extent. But I’m leaving my guess as it was and presuming that Tesla found ways to push through with just a moderate sales (delivery) reduction. We’ll see. (I may soon feel ashamed of this ambitious forecast. Of course, many Tesla fans think I’m being even too conservative.)

My biggest concern in my 2nd quarter forecast is that I expected far too many Model S and X to burst off the blocks. Tesla has struggled to get these into production, and expecting several thousand deliveries in Q2 at this point seems a bit ambitious. The other big difference between Maarten’s and my forecasts compared to Troy’s forecast is that Maarten and I expect far more Model Y deliveries and fewer Model 3 deliveries.

What about the 3rd quarter? The trend continues, with my overall forecast nearly 30,000 units above Troy’s, and Maarten’s forecast 22,000 above mine (so, almost 52,000 above Troy’s). The model-specific differences are essentially the same as well, with bigger expectations for the Model Y coming from Troy, smaller for the Model 3, and another significant gap in our Model S/X sales forecasts.

The 4th quarter followed the same trend, except that Troy’s S/X forecast jumped and even skipped past mine.

Building one quarter on top of another in which Maarten and I were more optimistic or ambitious than Troy with our sales estimates, the full-year sales forecasts put my forecast nearly 80,000 deliveries above Troy’s in 2021, and Maarten’s forecast nearly 143,000 higher.

We shall see. There are definitely big parts shortages in 2021, and none of us really know what that will mean in the 2nd quarter, let alone the 3rd and 4th. Stay tuned to CleanTechnica to find out! In the meantime, let us know your own forecasts if you’ve made them, or just let us know which side of these forecasts you lean toward.

 

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Written By

Zach is tryin' to help society help itself one word at a time. He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director, chief editor, and CEO. Zach is recognized globally as an electric vehicle, solar energy, and energy storage expert. He has presented about cleantech at conferences in India, the UAE, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, Canada, and Curaçao. Zach has long-term investments in Tesla [TSLA], NIO [NIO], Xpeng [XPEV], Ford [F], ChargePoint [CHPT], Amazon [AMZN], Piedmont Lithium [PLL], Lithium Americas [LAC], Albemarle Corporation [ALB], Nouveau Monde Graphite [NMGRF], Talon Metals [TLOFF], Arclight Clean Transition Corp [ACTC], and Starbucks [SBUX]. But he does not offer (explicitly or implicitly) investment advice of any sort.

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