Today, China. Tomorrow, the World!
As this company continues to execute, it simply becomes clearer and clearer that Elon Musk isn't just a genius, he's a stud that gets things done. Let the record show that I could buy more Tesla calls at any point in the coming days.
My last article on Tesla (TSLA) was titled, "Tesla's Planned Domination Of Planet Earth Continues On Or Ahead Of Schedule", because Tesla is quickly spreading itself out over planet Earth as it continually meets its goals. When Tesla IPOed, the question was whether or not the company was going to ever be profitable. Today, the only question that remains for me is just exactly how damn big can Tesla get?
I also have no doubt that once Tesla gets its feet on the ground, it's going to start to eventually, years from now, make a vehicle that's affordable to the everyday family - Tesla is going to be in driveways the same way that Honda and Ford are today.
Last week, Tesla announced on its blog that it was launching its online design studio for the Model S in China, and a preliminary pricing model for the vehicle. And, what would a blog entry be without the company also tooting its own horn a bit:
Today we're launching the Model S online design studio in China and announcing the price of the car. For Chinese customers, the price of the Model S with the premium 85 kWh battery pack is 734k CNY.
This pricing structure is something of a risk for Tesla, but we want to do the right thing for Chinese consumers. If we were to follow standard industry practice, we could get away with charging twice as much for the Model S in China as we do in the US. But we're doing things differently, even if it means that some people might look at the price and mistakenly think it must somehow mean the Model S has less value than its competitors.
Given that the Model S won the 2013 Motor Trend Car of the Year award, received the highest rating of any automobile in history from Consumer Reports (99 out of 100) and achieved the best possible US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration rating, that is certainly not the case.
Musk and the company obviously realize what potential the Chinese market holds for automobiles. Like both Ford (F) and General Motors (GM), Tesla is an auto company that is looking to accelerate its growth through the Chinese market.
And, like Tesla has done with all of its expectations to this point, I expect them to meet and then exceed whatever it is they set out to do in China.
In Other News: Tesla Continues to Meet Goals - Lots of Them
Additionally in "it's not going to effect the stock but it's still cool" news, Tesla released the news that this past weekend, a team drove from New York to LA, using only Tesla's Supercharger network. In essence, they covered 3,600 miles sans gasoline. Somewhere, in a petro company office, an executive isn't having a great morning. Musk is claiming that 80% of the population in the U.S. is covered by Tesla's network. Bloomberg, with some of the details:
Tesla Motors Inc.'s Elon Musk said the electric-car maker has expanded its U.S. network of rapid chargers to let owners of battery-powered Model S sedans drive their cars from coast to coast for the first time.
Musk, Tesla's chief executive officer and co-founder, said last year the company would set up "Superchargers" in most major U.S. and Canadian cities to permit long-distance trips solely on electricity provided at no charge. The carmaker has more than 70 stations in North America, according to Tesla's website.
Tesla, seeking to be the world's leading maker of all-electric autos, needs the broader network of charging stations to address the limited driving range and long charge times of battery cars. Without the stations, Tesla drivers are limited by the estimated 265-mile (426-kilometer) range of a Model S battery, which can take as long as 9 hours to repower.
Tesla is starting to rewrite a lot of the books that we already have for electric vehicles and the number of "firsts" that the company is achieving continues to pile up. I'm going to trust Tesla until they give me a reason not to. It's like I said in my previous article:
Now, let's talk about the company's track record. So far, Tesla has executed with everything they've said they were going to do as a company. In addition, they've provided excellent customer service to their customers and have done everything necessary to maintain that the vehicle and brand continue to carry a respectable and prestigious reputation. They have vetted and re-vetted the safety features of their vehicles throughout the last year, as well.
Ipso facto, if Tesla comes out and says they're going to blanket the Earth with Supercharger stations, I have to take them at their word at this point. In the company's short history, they have met or exceeded expectations to this point - and there's no reason to not think they will continue to do so in the future.
As such, if Tesla comes out and says they're going to revolutionize the industry as a product of going into China and executing by 2015, I'm going to take them on their word. As the company continues to make history, I continue to be bullish.
Tesla is off Monday afternoon $3.62 to $170.98.