Tesla still a top Baird pick despite 40% YTD run

|By:, SA News Editor

Baird backs its Outperform rating on Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) in a new note to clients that leans heavily on tech differentiation. Analyst Ben Kallo sees a competitive long-term advantage for Tesla after digging through patent applications. Some of the patents mentioned by the firm are listed below.

January 26: Visor for continuously extended windshield

February 2: Trip planning with energy constraint (energy monitoring)

March 2: Hidden ultrasonic sensor assembly

March 2: Vehicle front door power opening system

March 2: B-pillar deformation mode (side collison safety)

March 2: Monopost for free-standing vehicle seat (flexible seat configurations)

March 2: Vehicle air system with high efficiency filter (air breathing quality)

March 16: Methodology for charging batteries safely (battery performance)

March 30: Scalable and flexible cell-based energy storage system (system aimed at capacity of 1 GWh)

March 30: High speed blow forming processes (mass manufacturing improvement)

You can do your own Tesla patent sleuthing here.

Baird expects the patent activity to continue. "We believe TSLA will continue to design new technology for its gigafactory, solar offerings, and other products, which should provide additional opportunities for patent applications," writes analyst Ben Kallo. Back in December, Baird called Tesla its top pick for 2017 with shares at $213. Even now with Tesla up 40% since that call, Baird is sticking with its $368 price target.