Is Tesla's Q4 In Big Trouble?

| About: Tesla Motors (TSLA)


InsideEvs shows terrible November US sales.

Compared to Q3, Tesla is way behind.

December needs to be an all-time record.

A couple of days ago, I detailed how investors in Tesla Motors (NASDAQ:TSLA) really needed a dose of good news. Data from the US and Europe showed Q4 off to a poor start for the company, leading many to wonder if Q3 was in fact a one-time thing. Well, the November estimates are out from InsideEvs regarding Tesla's sales in the month, and the data is quite terrible. As the table below shows, Tesla has a lot of ground to make up.

Click to enlarge

(Source: InsideEvs monthly scorecard)

According to the site, Tesla delivered just 2,300 vehicles in November, which is more than 400 less than what was seen in the 2015 period! Not only is the company way behind what was seen in the October/November period from last year, but deliveries are estimated to be down almost 50% sequentially from Q3's first two months.

As I detailed in my article above, data points from Europe didn't appear to be that good either. As the table above shows, InsideEvs believed that Tesla delivered over 7,500 units in September 2016. To reach the Q3 total for the US, the site now estimates that Tesla needs to deliver just under 11,000 vehicles in December to match Q3's total in the US. That seems extremely unlikely.

At this point, all signs appear to Tesla having trouble meeting its high guidance for Q4. US sales are way behind what was seen in the first two months of Q3, and data points out of Europe don't appear to be much better. With General Motors (NYSE:GM) now allowing consumers to customize their own Bolt, things could get even worse if Model 3 deposits start to decline.

Given all the tricks Tesla pulled out in November to try and boost sales (supercharger program change, S price raise, etc.), investors need to hope that results in the mother of all delivery months for December, because right now, things do not look good. If December follows a similar trend to what we've seen so far, Tesla might even have trouble reaching 20,000 units in Q4.

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