Musk Promises Cybertruck Deliveries by Mid-’23 and Possibly Lower Prices

Musk Promises Cybertruck Deliveries by Mid-’23 and Possibly Lower Prices


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Tesla expects to average 40,000 units per week by year-end among its plants in California, Berlin, and Shanghai in reaching its goal of producing 1.9 million EVs globally.The automaker is working to replace its 2170 battery-cell platform with the 4680 “structural pack,” potentially next year. Musk says the new cells combine energy storage with the vehicle’s body structure.Tesla has deployed FSD Beta with city street driving capability to more than 100,000 owners. Non-Tesla engineers will tell you “full self-driving” is a marketing term because no current car is fully autonomous. Hope versus reality? “We’re hoping to start delivery” of Tesla Cybertrucks “in the middle of next year,” CEO Elon Musk told analysts and investors in the EV maker’s second-quarter 2022 financial results webcast Wednesday evening. Musk went into no further detail. Industry analysts have told Autoweek there is little chance the electric pickup will launch before December 2023.

The CEO instead detailed how Tesla will continue to break new ground on other, more advanced technologies and will not keep them from the consuming public for a traditional new-product style rollout. That philosophy has long made the company a Wall Street darling, currently valued more than five times as much as General Motors, Ford, and Stellantis, combined, while also making it a safety advocacy target for its “full self-driving” claims. Technology highlights:Tesla is working to replace its 2170 battery-cell platform with the 4680 “structural pack,” potentially next year. Musk describes the 4680s as combining energy storage with the vehicle’s body structure, an “optimal architecture” much like aircraft wings that double as fuel storage. It’s “radically better than a battery pack that is carried like a sack of potatoes,” he said. The issue for bringing the 4680 to market is not its development, but “dozens of little production issues.” Whenever the new packs arrive, they will increase energy density and lower cell costs, he said. Tesla has deployed FSD Beta with city street driving capability to more than 100,000 owners. Non-Tesla engineers will tell you “full self-driving” is a marketing term (and a potentially dangerous one) in this case because no car is currently fully autonomous. Still, Musk claims customers have driven more than 35 million miles with FSD Beta, “more autonomous miles than any company we’re aware of.” Tesla’s continuing work on a “static and moving object network” is FSD navigation that surrounds the dynamic video with spatial memory—the static part. It’s “probably not necessary to achieve full self-driving,” Musk explained.

Elon Musk in Berlin.
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Asked about recent Tesla price hikes, Musk said it takes six months to a year to take delivery of one of its models, and “we have to determine what the probable inflation rate will be at that time. There could be a slight decrease.” Order a Model Y now and you’ll have to wait until next year, he said.Unlike, say, Ferrari, Tesla does not want consumer demand to outstrip supply. The company expects to average 40,000 units per week by the end of this year among its Fremont, California; Berlin, Germany; and Shanghai assembly plants to reach its goal of producing 1.9 million EVs globally.

As for the Q2 results, full shutdown of the Shanghai plant over much of the quarter was offset by ramp-up of the new Berlin plant. Automotive revenues were up 43% over Q2 of ’21, to $14.6 billion, with gross profit of $4.2 billion, up 46.8% over the same period a year earlier. Tesla still hopes to achieve its longstanding goal of 50% year-over-year improvement by the end of 2022.

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