Posts Tagged ‘elon musk’

Musk Strikes Back After Tough Reviews of Model 3

CEO suggested problems were related to software issue.

by on May.22, 2018

Tesla's Elon Musk took to to defend and explain some of the issues Consumer Reports came across in reviewing the Model 3.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk took to – as he often does – to defend his company and the Model 3 and explain problems that Consumer Reports told its readers about were easily fixed.

The magazine, which stopped short of giving the Model 3 an endorsement, pointed out that the new sedan performed poorly in braking tests. In fact, it said it tested two vehicles and each of them performed worse in the 60-to-0 mph test than a new Ford F-150 truck.

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This happened even after the car it owned received a software update to improve the vehicle’s braking system. (more…)

Musk Looks Beyond Model 3 Problems, But Creates Some Headaches in the Process

CEO talks future product, factories – but still sends stock plunging.

by on May.03, 2018

Forget those earnings numbers. Tesla CEO Elon Musk was far more interested in talking about future products, the next-gen Roadster shown here.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk is not one to suffer fools – or critics – lightly, as he proved during a 75-minute teleconference call following the release of the automaker’s first-quarter earnings report on Wednesday evening.

The South African-born executive attempted to put a positive spin on what was Tesla’s worst-ever quarterly deficit, promising future earnings while also revealing plans for new factories, new products and a new, fully hands-free version of the Autopilot system. But Musk also offered a harsh assessment of some of the reporters on the earnings call, while repeatedly cutting off analysts looking for long-term financial projections that he dismissed as “boring.”

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“These questions are so dry, they’re killing me,” he interjected before dismissing one analyst’s questions. Musk later shifted his disdain to reporters, at one point suggesting that by questioning the safety of Tesla’s current, semi-autonomous version of Autopilot, reporters might convince drivers to turn it off “and then die.”

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Despite Record Loss, Investors See Silver Lining Pockets in Tesla’s Q1 Earnings

Revenues beat expectation, loss narrower than forecast – but troubles remain.

by on May.02, 2018

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has taken to sleeping at the Fremont plant hoping to drive improvements in quality and production levels.

Tesla managed to beat Wall Street expectation on Wednesday, even as it reported the biggest loss in the company’s history.

But revenues exceeded expectations and the loss was actually less than anticipated, while the Silicon Valley automaker noted that production of the critical Model 3 battery-sedan reached 2,270 in the week prior to a temporary shutdown of the Fremont, California assembly plant last month. That’s up from barely 2,000 at the end of the first quarter.

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“The thing I’m most excited about is the rapid increase in output,” said Musk during a Wednesday afternoon conference call with analysts and reporters. “Production is improving dramatically, exponentially, in fact.”

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Nikola Sues Tesla Over Alleged Patent Infringement

Radically different powertrain technologies - but curiously similar cab designs spark lawsuit.

by on May.02, 2018

The Nikola One heavy-duty rig will be able to travel up to 1,000 miles on a tank of hydrogen.

There’s something ironic about learning that Nikola is suing Tesla, two companies both meant to honor maverick inventor Nikola Tesla, but the Salt Lake City-based Nikola Motor Co. has filed a suit against Silicon Valley rival claiming Tesla has infringed on its design patents.

While Tesla is best known for its battery  sedan and SUV models, it is also hoping to become a big player in the truck market with the upcoming launch of its electric Semi. Nikola, meanwhile, also wants to turn the truck industry green, though it is focusing on the hydrogen fuel-cell technology that will power rigs like its heavy-duty Nikola One. And it claims the similarities in the look of the two trucks is more than coincidental.

Keep on Truckin'!

“The Tesla Semi design is substantially similar to Nikola’s unique design, and Tesla copied Nikola’s patents,” the start-up claims in a lawsuit filed on Tuesday. It added that it “estimates its harm from Tesla’s infringement to be in excess of $2 billion.”

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Wall Street Waiting for Tesla Earnings as Automaker Burns Through Cash

The big question: will Tesla need a new cash infusion?

by on May.01, 2018

Tesla is losing about $6,500 a minute - or about as much as a Model 3 costs in the time it takes to read this story.

Whether you’re someone who sees the glass as half-full or half-empty, there’s plenty to ponder as Tesla prepares to reveal its first-quarter earnings on Wednesday.

The California battery-carmaker saw a big surge in production of its critical new Model 3 during the January to March period – but still fell 20% short of its target. Nonetheless, that was expected to have pushed revenues up 16.5% during the quarter, to $3.14 billion, according to Zacks Consensus Estimates. But with the automaker struggling to get things running smoothly at its Fremont, California assembly plant, quarterly earnings are expected to plunge 153.4%, year-over-year, with Tesla running a per-share deficit of $3.37.

Beyond the Headlines!

Short-sellers seem to be the ones with the biggest smiles these days, as Tesla’s worsening cash burn problem leaves investors wary and worried that the carmaker may soon have to beg Wall Street for money to keep its operations going.

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Tesla Model 3: How Can Such a Good Car Be So Bad

Teardown of battery-electric vehicle reveals many surprises.

by on Apr.25, 2018

"You can see the gaps from the moon" on the body of a Tesla Model 3, according to Sandy Munro.

With apologies to Charles Dickens, think of it as two tales of a car, suggests Sandy Munro, head of the suburban Detroit competitive analysis firm, Munro and Associates. How can such a breakthrough vehicle also have so many problems, he asks, during a lengthy look at what’s under the skin of the Tesla Model 3.

Over the years, Munro’s firm has vivisected hundreds of automobiles, including a number of new battery-electric vehicles, such as the BMW i3 and Chevrolet Bolt EV. But few teardowns, he suggested, have been more eye-opening than Tesla’s first mainstream offering. In terms of its battery-based drivetrain technology, the Model 3 readily sets a benchmark, but it’s another matter entirely with many of the things an owner more readily sees, including a body with massive quality and fit-and-finish problems.

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“It’s the best of (cars) and the worst of (cars),” Munro said, during a special meeting of the Detroit Automotive Press Association held at his Auburn Hills facility. “Some stuff gets a six, on a scale of one to five, others a one.”

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Despite Problems, Musk Promises Tesla Profit in Second Half of 2018

Stock up, but not everyone convinced.

by on Apr.13, 2018

CEO Elon Musk shown exiting the back seat of a Model 3 at its debut. Musk still needs to dig out of trouble caused by Model 3 delays.

It’s been a tough few weeks for Tesla, the battery-electric automaker again missing production targets, being accused of improperly firing nearly 1,000 factory workers and being scolded by federal safety regulators for its role in investigating a fatal crash involving its semi-autonomous Autopilot system.

But that has done little to dampen the enthusiasm of CEO Elon Musk. After earlier this week suggesting Model 3 production isn’t delayed but in a “time shift,” the South African-born exec on Friday tweeted a promise that Tesla will be both profitable and produce positive cash flow by the second half of this year.

Promises, Promises!

Musk’s latest tweet came in response to a harsh Twitter post by British news magazine The Economist, which warned Tesla would need to raise more cash this year. “The Economist used to be boring,” Musk responded, “but smart with a wicked dry wit. Now it’s just boring (sigh). Tesla will be profitable & cash flow+ in Q3 & Q4, so obv no need to raise money.”

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Tesla Hit With NLRB Complaint Over Mass Firings

Feds probe controversial firing of nearly 1,000 employees.

by on Apr.05, 2018

Tesla's Fremont plant has faced a series of problems over the last year.

The National Labor Relations Board has filed a formal complaint against Tesla, finding merit to a series of charges involving the company’s treatment of employees over the past months, including claims that union supporters were swept out in a mass firing.

Charges, cited by the NLRB, range from terminating employees in retaliation for engaging in union and/or protected activities to unlawful interrogations of union supporters. Many of the pro-union employees were fired last fall when Tesla dismissed nearly 1,000 employees for what it described as substandard job performance.

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Tesla has yet to file an answer to the complaint lodged by the NLRB but denied the allegations when the union fielded the charges last autumn. It will have to come up with a response before a trial date now set for June 11.

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Tesla Dismisses Model 3 Production Shortfall and Investors Appear to Agree

Production accelerating so fast it may soon “exceed even that of Ford and the Model T.”

by on Apr.03, 2018

Tesla's Elon Musk told investors the company will be closing in on higher production numbers for the Model 3.

Tesla on Tuesday confirmed that it again fell short of its production target for the much-delayed Model 3 sedan, though it also promised that the “production rate will climb rapidly” from the 2,000 battery-cars assembled each week in late March to 5,000 by the end of the second quarter.

Delays with the ramp-up of the Model 3, Tesla’s first mainstream offering, have been a nightmare for the California-based carmaker, plunging its first-quarter earnings deeply into the red and raising the specter of having to raise new equity to fund its ongoing operations. But after a sharp plunge in its stock over the past month, investors appear to be taking solace in the latest production figures, Tesla shares surging by more than 3% in late morning trading.

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Tesla played up the positive in a statement Tuesday, despite missing its production target. It cited “the progress made thus far” as “laying the groundwork” for a strong third quarter. “As a result, Tesla does not require an equity or debt raise this year, apart from standard credit lines.” (more…)

Tesla Again Misses Production Target for Model 3

Output up, still 20% short of goal, according to Musk e-mail.

by on Apr.02, 2018

Tesla is finally ramping up Model 3 production but still has a long way to go to meet targets.

Tesla shares took another 5% tumble on Monday after reports surfaced that the automaker once again missed its production targets for the much-delayed Model 3 battery-sedan.

Delays in the roll-out have hammered Tesla’s balance sheet, with some analysts expecting the California carmaker to have to go back for another fundraising round. It didn’t help to have Elon Musk post an April Fool’s Day joke indicating the automaker would be declaring bankruptcy.

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In an e-mal sent to Tesla workers on Monday, Musk said production of the Model 3 had reached the 2,000 per week mark at the end of the first quarter, but that is still short of the 2,500 target Tesla had projected back around the beginning of the year, and it is even more substantially behind the original target Tesla had laid out when Model 3 production began in July 2017.

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