Initial orders for Tesla’s new Model S electric sedan have outperformed expectations some way, with the company having clocked over $10bn worth of orders in only the first 36 hours. As the company’s first high volume vehicle and its lowest-cost car to date, Tesla will need to fulfil hundreds of thousands of orders each year if it is to make good on its intentions to become a staple of the auto industry. The 276,000 orders it took on the initial day and a half is as good a start as any.
The figure in question was tweeted by the company’s CEO, Elon Musk, along with a series of design sketches and signs that the response to the new car was more positive than he expected.
Token of appreciation for those who lined up coming via mail. Thought maybe 20-30 people per store would line up, not 800. Gifts on order.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 2, 2016
It should be said, however, that Musk’s $10.6bn projection is based on an average price of $42,000 per car, far and above the $35,000 base price. What’s more, prospective car owners were asked to put down a refundable $1,000 deposit to reserve a car, which means not all of the orders will translate into sales.
The new Model 3 won’t hit showrooms until late 2017, and, given that the company delivered barely over 50,000 vehicles last year, production will need a fair few upgrades before it finally reaches capacity at 500,000 cars a year. For the time being, the pre-orders go some way towards rebuilding enthusiasm for the brand before an equity offering later this year, now that its share price is 60 percent higher than a 12-month low in February.