In the past, Tesla missed its part-sharing goals, production and sales targets.
Its Model X was supposed to share a majority of its parts with Tesla’s Model S, but it only wound up sharing around 30 percent after Musk originally planned for 60 percent.
Pricing of the Model Y is a key consideration for investors. Bernstein senior technology research analyst Toni Sacconaghi wrote in a note ahead of the model’s debut, “We’d expect the initial price to be around $55,000. This will be key to manage against cannibalization.” He also said that, in the longer term, the Model Y could enjoy higher gross margins than Tesla’s Model 3, a car that the company intended to offer for an accessible price, aiming to bring electric vehicles to the masses.
Tesla previously said it would most likely manufacture the Model Y at Gigafactory 1, its sprawling battery plant outside of Reno, Nevada. Musk did not confirm this plan at the unveiling event.
While Tesla has accepted $1,000 “pre-orders,” or reservation payments, in the past, Musk did not mention any reservation plans for the Model Y. Customers can order the Model Y on Tesla’s website already. Ordering requires a $2,500 payment, due today, to move an order forward.
The CEO spent the better part of the hour-long presentation recounting Tesla’s achievements building factories, charging infrastructure and luxury electric vehicles while battling electric car opponents and skepticism. Fans in the audience heckled Musk as they would a stand-up comic, and he bantered with them about where to build a supercharger next, (Saskatchewan, and Kazakhstan were mentioned) and more.
“It’s wild to think about, 11 years ago today we’d made literally one car. And a year from now we’ll have made a million,” Musk mused, echoing the content of a tweet that recently landed him in hot water with financial regulators.
While Musk did not give specific guidance as to the volume of Model Y SUVs the company planned to produce in 2020, he said, “We’ll probably do more Model Ys than S, X and 3s combined.”