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Projected Delivery Dates

Based on announced 5000 unit production run* from June 2012 to December 2012 (avg. 833 per month): June/July for R & S reservations = first 1,666 cars; Aug rest of 230-300mi packs = 2,500 cars; Sept 160mi packs up to P 833; Oct 160mi packs up to P 1,666; Nov/Dec 160mi packs up to P 2500.

Of course the sequence numbers we all have are bogus since no one knows what the drop out rate will be at the time of delivery (it would be nice if they gave us an ETA delivery date now (based on real data) or did a “re-sequencing” of reservation numbers.

P.S. the fact that the larger packs got moved to the front of the line really burns me since I hold P 469 and this policy was not announced up-front. Still, I can’t wait …

* http://www.thedetroitbureau.com/2011/03/tesla-sets-price-production-plan...

I was able to go the the ride event/factory tour and it looked to me that the tooling should be done before the end of the year so maybe late Q1 delivery dates are possible!

Yeah, tooling in place starting Nov 1st was what I heard on the tour which would be very favorable for Q1 delivery. And if I had to guess at what the bottlenecks/critical path for their delivery schedule it would most likely be software and not hardware.

I wouldn't underestimate the time it could take to train up employees that work the production line. There are going to be things that the guys who run the line learn don't work the way they thought or things that don't work optimally while the workers themselves are going to learn how to be efficient, and how to do quality work.

Regardless of how much experience the guys building the line have, there will need to be some time to iron out the kinks so that the line works and works efficiently for a new model of car -- especially one which departs from traditional vehicles so much.

Now that said, I'm sure they have lots of experience and that will reduce the time I speak of, but it can never eliminate it.

Now I'm not a production manager of any sort, nor have I worked on a production line. There may be people here on these forums that can comment more precisely than me on these details. However despite not having been directly involved with a production line, I have worked for a print on demand publisher who had a production line for creating books and I worked with that line to design software for improving the manufacturing process. They were constantly tweaking process and training and re-training employees to find and eliminate as many inconsistencies, quality issues, and efficiency problems as they could even when the line was working better than it ever had.

They aren't expecting to get it perfect the first time through. The first car down their assembly line is expected to do one thing: show them where they need to make changes/improvements, NOTHING more.

@Vawlkus: I'm old enough to remember the introduction of the very first Lexus Model LS400. Toyota wanted to establish a luxury brand, and to do that they priced the first year vehicle very attractively relative to their competition. But more important, they built a near-flawless automobile, one that wowed reviewers and consumers inside and out. The success of the Lexus line is a major success story for the company.

I agree that Tesla can't expect to get it "perfect." But they better follow Toyota's lead and try very, very hard to get the Model S right, to build it with the highest possible quality, and to ensure that all of the high tech functionality works flawlessly.

Like they say, "you only get one chance to make a first impression." Tesla and Elon are betting the company that the first impression (among early adopters) will create a buzz that drives their business to success. The Model S won't be perfect, but it better be right.

I think Vawkus is talking about QC issues on the first handful of cars down the line, cars that will never land in a customers' hands. Tesla's given every indication that they intend to make the delivered Model Ss as well-built as any production car out there.

That said, I'm perfectly content to be P#1635. By the time mine is built, they'll have gotten all the production kinks out.

From another thread, I recall soemone saying there are 5 of the Beta I. We saw three at the factory that night, possibly 4 if Elon's car was the same one they were using for test drives. These were partialy built under contract in Detroit per this source, but I can't verify. Tesla has other facilities other than NUMMI, I believe, and work might have been done there as well.

Beta II will be a run of 50 which is supposed to occur on the NUMMI line. That's your practice run to get the kinks out. I think those will be subjected to destructive testing, crashes, torture track, endurance, and finaly disection for failure analysis. Not gonna end well for those 50 cars, I suspect.

I'm also going to make a wild assed guess that there will also be a few production run cars that will not be sold to get the kinks out of the first production run as well. But then they go straight into the production run of the Signature series, the most expensive S sold to the most discriminating customers. For a V1.0 product, thats showing some enormous brass balls. And I saw nothing at the October event that indicated they can't pull it off.

Reminds me of a quote - Make no little plans. They do not have the magic to stir men's blood.

I talked to a guy at the open house event. Don't remember his name but he is a founder. He said that they are waiting for some casting dyes to come in before they can begin production. He didn't specify what kind of dyes, but he did mention that they are coming from Japan. They are due to be shipped over in March. So I asked if it would take a month or two to incorporate them and run tests and he said that was accurate. Then I said we could expect May/June for the first deliveries and he said that was reasonable.

Given my discussion I doubt Q1 delivery is going to happen.

@JayK, Damn! With that timeline I'm luck as MODEL S #1837, I most likely will not see my car until the beautiful driving months of summer 2012 are over! :(

a $2.5B company will not wait 6 months for any piece of equipment, unless it is something huge, or unique or extremely expensive (8 digits or more) - could you give more details ? they are going to manufacture those beta 2 in their own factory; maybe just expectations management ?

a $2.5B company will not wait 6 months for any piece of equipment, unless it is something huge, or unique or extremely expensive (8 digits or more) - could you give more details ? they are going to manufacture those beta 2 in their own factory; maybe just expectations management ?

According to the founder that I talked to, there are only a few places in the world that make the dyes that he was referring to. The dye manufacturer is backlogged.

The founder didn't mention this, but I wonder if the Japan dye manufacturer has been affected by the earthquake/tsunami that hit earlier this year?

I suppose there is always the possibility that the dyes are completed and shipped earlier...as well as later than the March ETA...but that's what I was told.

Several engineers reported that the Japanese dyes were coming over here late October or early November. They will then tool up the plant and make the limited run of 50 cars to be tested and crashed. They then will tool up the plant further and begin slowly making " production intent" cars. These will not be sold, rather they will be used by employees, founders and sent to the stores. Next will be a Founders series (this is downplayed and very few in number and may not have any special badging). Next will be the Roadster Signatures. This would mark the "start" of production in May or June. Next are regular Signatures and later Roadster reserving Signatures. Next are regular production with 300 mile battery.

from GJamrok | OCTOBER 2, 2011 http://www.teslamotors.com/forum/forums/october-1-new-feature-information

" My impression of the delivery order for the production models was that they will take orders in order of your reservation number but then deliver in order of battery pack size. The example given to me was that if I order a 320 mile pack I would hope to expect it q3 of 2012 and if I chose a 160 mile pack it would be more like late late 2012 or early 2013."

I agree (; sorry for high P #'s 160 packs like me !!!

Grammarnasty/
Dyes are colors. Dies are stamping forms.
/Grammarnasty

Elon Musk today (10/14/11) says Model S delivery begins no latter than July 2012 ... anybody want to move up their estimated delivery date!!!!

http://video.cnbc.com/gallery/?video=3000051338

How about July 31, 2012?

I'll take June 29, 2012 -- last business day of Q2. As I understand it, if they can ship product in the quarter, there's a different (and superior) treatment of all the reservation money they've collected so far.

Soflauthor: chart update if you please?
Tx

Given that the "hard target" is end-of-June, I'm betting they actually start deliveries in April. Wouldn't dare to guess when in April or how fast they ramp up though.

"As I understand it, if they can ship product in the quarter, there's a different (and superior) treatment of all the reservation money they've collected so far."

Could you explain this? The current treatment is that it is unreserved cash (well...for reservation-holders in most states), and for profit/loss/balance accounting, the cash is an asset and the corresponding amount is a liability. (So reservations increase cash flow but not reported profits.)

I believe this remains true as long as the reservations are refundable. Once people start committing and sending in their full payments, the full payment becomes unreserved cash and is booked as revenue and an asset, but the cost of the to-be-produced car gets booked as a liability and a cost.

Is this what you are referring to? If so, it doesn't seem to have anything to do with shipping dates *or* what quarter they ship in, but it does have to do with when they require people to commit to buying the car.

Or is there something else you're referring to, a condition of some loan perhaps, where shipping releases loan money or something?

@ncn: No, you're probably right and there is no difference; I vaguely recalled hearing someone opine that it would matter. I should stick to economics, not accounting!

I'm sure, though, the Elon would love to have the Q2 10-Q SEC filing reporting actual deliveries.

@joefee68: will do. Traveling tonight, will update chart tomorrow.

@ncn & @Robert.Boston: Tesla stock should pop when a firm delivery date is announced. In addition, once data concerning the percentage of reservation holders who pull the trigger and commit (let's call that the conversion ratio) will allow projection of 3Q and 4Q profits, and will have a significant impact of the trajectory of the stock over the next year. I have to believe that Elon and all major investors want early delivery AND and high conversion ratio so that the stock really takes off. As a stockholder and a reservation holder, it's win-win for me if they succeed :)

@ Soflauthor

Never assume you can guess stock price variations. They are not logical in the short term. We are in for a wild ride (both ways I think), and the reaction to the news is not mechanical.

@Nicu said: "Never assume you can guess stock price variations. "

You're absolutely correct. However, I have to believe that if very positive buzz (great reviews of the Production S, news stories that are positive, heavy positive word of mouth) accompany good projected P&L numbers in 3Q12 and 4Q12, there's a good probability that the stock will perform well. Then again, as you state -- it's not mechanical.

Here's the latest delivery date estimates summary. I've added a few guesses from the Tesla Motor Club forum. Now that Elon has announced 7-31-12 as a target, I suspect that dates will cluster there.

BTW, if you believe in the wisdom of crowds, the current average date is 10 June 12 and the median date is 27 June 12.

My official guess is May 14, 2012 for starting production.

@Soflauthor, You can count on the stock to be popping like popcorn almost monthly, with every press announcement between now and next summer. The biggest pop will be in the two weeks following the first Model S cars rolling off the production line, but there will be several smaller pops between now and then. Some of the milestones triggering pops will be:
- Oct. 2011 Factory event (already popped $2.50 a share)
- Model X Prototype revealed.
- Detroit Auto Show (Models S and X on display?)
- Beta 2 or Production Intent cars hit showrooms
- Model S 5 Star Crash Rating Achieved
- RAV4 EV Production & US deliveries begin
- Model S Production begins

I would not want to be a short seller of TSLA over the next several months. IMO many of these "gamblers" are going to get burned!

In an interview with AutoObserver, Passin made two observations of interest here.

As soon as Oct. 17, the company will stamp the first body shell of the Model S at the factory using robots, then paint it using the company's high-tech robotic painters and assemble it using people on Tesla's assembly line, Gilbert Passin (below), vice president of manufacturing, told AutoObserver during the plant tour. "The first car using the production equipment should be done by mid-November.

and

Passin, who led high-profile divisions at Toyota, Volvo, Mack and Renault across North America and Europe prior to joining Tesla, said of the first car that will go down the line, "We're going to learn a lot from that car, because it's not going to be perfect. We know that there's going to be some bugs and some debugging." That first car will have the internal name of beta 2 to differentiate it from the Model S betas that were on hand for test rides on Monday. Those did not use the production tooling equipment in the factory for their construction. Tesla is looking at a release candidate – that's a car that's identical to or extremely close to the production version – by January or February, Passin said. "Our target delivery date for the first car to a customer is mid-2012. That means that we will probably fill up the production pipeline before that, of course, so that we can deliver the car by mid-2012…By year-end 2012, we should be producing between 5,500 and 6,000 cars delivered to customers."

That implies they are going to build up an inventory before making the first delivery in mid-2012. They probably want to maintain a steady monthly delivery level during the second half of 2012. With an inventory on hand, they can do that while still building up productioon rates.

"That implies they are going to build up an inventory before making the first delivery in mid-2012"

Not to me. It implies they're building a bunch of beta 2s for crash testing and production line tweaking purposes. Then they're building release candidates that will go to the dealers for test driving and possibly the gov't for tests. They won't build the production cars until they get the orders and they're not going to get the orders until there are test drives.

@jackhub,
Thanks for the great information.

>a $2.5B company will not wait 6 months for any piece of equipment,
>unless it is something huge, or unique or extremely expensive (8
>digits or more) -

Tell that to Boeing!

@mycroft: I agree; Tesla isn't going to "build inventory" because each car will be built to spec, at least until they get through the thousands of reservations. No point in building a custom car and then delaying delivery.


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