Tesla Q4 2018 Production & Delivery Estimates Survey


Around 100 people have participated in my Tesla Production and Delivery Estimates survey this quarter, compared to less than 40 people in the last quarter. There are five questions:

  • Model S+X production
  • Model 3 production
  • Model S deliveries
  • Model X deliveries
  • Model 3 deliveries

I have picked these because all five are released by Tesla which makes it possible to measure accuracy. There are two more questions about future quarters:

  • Model 3 deliveries in the next quarter
  • Model 3 deliveries in the next four quarters

The most controversial estimate this quarter is Model 3 production. Most estimates change between low 50’s and high 60’s. The average is 60,081 units. Last quarter, Model 3 production was 53,239 and deliveries were 56,065 (source: Tesla Third Quarter 2018 Update).

Tesla is expected to release Q4 results on January 2nd or 3rd on their web page here: ir.tesla.com. It will be interesting to find out the actual results. I tweeted my final estimates yesterday here.

I have seen people who love commenting about why other people’s estimates must be wrong while at the same time displaying no interest in finding out their own accuracy. I think it’s easier to improve things you can measure. Therefore measuring things and changing your methods over time might be a better approach than just commenting. I hope this survey inspires more people to measure and try to improve their estimates.

If you want to add your estimate too, you have until the end of 31 Dec 2018, Pacific Time. The accuracy of all entries will be measured when the actual numbers are released. Here is the survey: Tesla Production & Delivery Estimates. Click here for the Google Form to enter your estimates. I’m glad funding was not secured, Tesla didn’t go private and we continue to have a little fun with Tesla estimates at the end of each quarter.

It looks like Q1 2019 will be an interesting quarter too because Tesla is expected to start production for Europe and Asia/Pacific soon. One of the common questions I get is about the backlog in Europe and because this article is a little light on content, let me change that by adding an estimate for the backlog of reservation holders outside of North America.

The backlog in North America cleared at 145,000 units for current models. In other words, there are no reservation holders left for Model 3 MR, LR, LRD or P in North America and Tesla produced about 145,000 Model 3s since they started production. 81% of entries in my survey Teslike Model 3 Order Tracker are reservation holders but they are more likely to participate in surveys. Let’s assume 75% of 145K were reservation holders. That would mean 109K reservation holders in North America for current models.

Looking at Model S data and adjusting for the fact that the smaller Model 3 is expected to be more popular in Europe than the Model S, I would expect the reservation holder split to be 47% North America, 36% Europe and 17% Asia/Pacific. If 47% is 109K in North America, then 36% would be 84K reservation holders in Europe and 17% equals to 39K in APAC. If these estimates are roughly accurate, Tesla already has enough orders for Q1 and Q2 2019 and they don’t need any addition demand levers.

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