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Tesla and Norway: We hardly knew you! – Tesla, Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA)



In the past week, no shortage of articles has pointed out Tesla (TSLA) blockbuster in March in Norway. Tesla sold 5,315 Model 3 units, which in March – and 6,239 units in total – provided consumption deliveries started around mid-February.

Delivering this batch of three years with model 3 backlog of barely over a month led to this surprisingly spring-loaded result. Tesla would deliver nearly 7,000 units as soon as the ships came from San Francisco, and the question was just how quickly they would make it happen.

Tesla surely exceeded my expectations of delivering these 6,239 vehicles by the end of March. I had found that they would be able to deliver just under 4,000, while the others nearly 3,000 jumped to April. As a result, I have adjusted my first quarterly sales estimate to over 65,000 units for Tesla's global vehicle sales.

There may still be a few hundred units, perhaps close to 1000, that Tesla still supplies in Norway in early April. In order to get the earliest feeling of what has happened since the end of the quarter on Sunday evening, we are blessed by the presence of Norway's real-time registration system that is available on the fantastic Internet: registrations of new electric cars in Norway. [19659002] With only two days in April under the belt, it is an understatement to say that it is not yet very early to tell where April is going in Norway. However, this still leaves data available from any other country on earth – and with Norway as Tesla's children's art for March, we must take advantage of all the canaries in the coal mine that are available to us, the investors – long and short.

If you've been living under a rock during the past week, then two of many examples of articles that have focused on the amazing performance of Tesla selling 5.315 model 3 units in Norway in a single month from CNBC / Reuters and Bloomberg:

Tesla boom promises Norway's electric car sales to record market share

Tesla Mania

For the unknown, Norway has by far the highest degree of adoption of electric cars because it also has the largest de facto subsidies of electric cars. This is how the Norwegian regime works that non-electric cars are heavily charged, sometimes doubling the price or more. In contrast, electric cars are tax-free, which makes it very uneconomical for anyone to buy a non-electric car.

With that as background, let's look at where we are in Norway the first two days of April. Here are the battery boats that are sold in Norway so far this month:

2019-04 Norway

2 April 19659013] 1

Tesla Model 3

120

2

VW eGolf

73

3

Nissan LEAF

47

4

BMW i3

41

5

Audi eTron

30

6

] Jaguar i -Pace

24

7

Hyundai Kona EV

18

8

Hyundai Ioniq EV

17

9

Kia Soul EV

13

] 10

Nissan e-NV200

13

11

VW eUp

10

12

Renault Zoe

8

13

Tesla

4

4

4

4

4

4

4

4

4

4

4

As you can see in the table above, we have a dramatic decline in Tesla's business in Norway, when the quarter was finished. First look at model 3: 120 units sold in two days. It is 60 per day, or a rate of 1800 per month.

1800 will be a two-thirds cut compared to 5,315 in March. Ouch. 5.315 divided by 31 days was 171 per day in March – reaching down to 60 per day in April. It's a two-thirds that goes well.

Then we have model X and S. In such cases we do not see much on Tesla's own sales figures, but rather the direct competition from Audi and Jaguar.

2

1

1

Audi eTron

30

2

The Jaguar i-series, which consists of four cars, looks like this:

2

1

Norway

Pace

24

3

Tesla Model X

5

4

Tesla Model S

5

As you can see in the table above, Audi expands and Jaguar's leadership over Tesla Model S and X.

I cannot stress enough that I already know what the biggest objection will be to this analysis. I mentioned it already at the beginning of the article: It is based on just two days, and Lord knows, it's not a sample size that you want to attach all faith in the world.

But as I also said above, we cannot ignore these leading indicators. It is a world of difference between those who think – or at least suggest – that the March 3 sales rate for Model 3 was somehow sustainable in the future, and those who think it was nothing but cramming for three years worth of decline to just over a month.

Another objection to this analysis will be: "Tesla's Norwegian sales are low in April and probably also in May. However, June will be a monster month again."

Yes, it is possible. I think it will be true directional, at least. However, it is simply too early to comment yet. We have not yet seen any ships from San Francisco with units coming to Norway. We can start seeing it in a month from now. When that happens, we can analyze it.

Meanwhile, we must play with the data we actually have, thanks to the diligent reporting by the Norwegian authorities. These numbers will certainly change, somehow, literally every single day for the rest of this month. I expect to update these numbers accordingly.

Until then, and now the data is clear, and there are two conclusions:

  1. Norwegian Model 3 sales are starting to be down to two-thirds compared to March. [19659086] Audi and Jaguar deliver Tesla Model X and S in Norway dramatically, even with a much larger margin than in March.

Where do you think Tesla will end April in Norway on these two points?

Finally, let me end with my updated Tesla Q1 unit sales estimates. First, the good old model S:

84

Model S

January

February

March

Q1 2019

USA

875

800

2725

4400 [19659014] Canada

110

115

170

395

Germany

91

87

130

308

Norway

19

166

269

Netherlands

14

10

8

32

50

21 19659014] Switzerland

23

26

50

99

Belgium

13

26

65

104

Austria

16

72

108

UK

81

45

100

226

Italia

6

6

18 19659014] Finland

7

4

15

26

Spain

16 [1 9659011] 7

7

30

Ireland

10

1

15

26

Sweden

29

52

90

52

90

171

China

300

300

300

900 [19659012] Australia

70

70

70

210

TOTAL

1701 [19659011] 1687

4051

7439

As you can see in the table above, the month of March would be more than half of the sales. US sales are, as always, based on Insideevs: Tesla Model 3, S, X March 2019, US sales calculations.

The other countries come from their respective DMVs.

With that, let's move on to model X:

Model X

January

February

Mars

Q1 2019

USA

950

1100

950

1100

] 2425

4475

Canada

140

140

210

490

Germany

44

46

90

180

Norway

150

141

341

632

Netherlands

9

7 [19659012] 6

22

France

11

11

11

11

] 0

22

Switzerland

15

13

20

48

Belgium

19

14

47

80

Austria

53

68

53

62

34 [19659012] 80

176

Italia

12

9

] 19

40

Finland

7

2

10 [19659012] 19

Spain [19659011] 16

15

11

42

Ireland

3

2

10

15

Sweden

8

7

15

30

China

400

400

400

1200

Australia

60

60

60 [19659012] 180

TOTAL [19659011] 1911

2011

3797

7719

As you can see in the table above, the situation is extremely similar to model S.

Finally, the model 3:

Model 3

January

February

March

Q1 2019

USA

6500

5750

11000

23250

Canada

710

900

1000 [19659011] 2610

Germany

2

959

2600

3561

Norge

17

791 [19659012] 5315

6123

The Netherlands

The Netherlands

40

472

2195

2707

France

0 [19659012] 401

1153

1554

Switzerland

0

277

1300

1577

Belgium

1

197

] 564

762

Austria

2

136

627

765

Italia

0

80

232

312

232

312

Finland

1 [19659012] 34

128

163

Spain

3

200

396

599

Portugal

0

0

0

0

] 345

345

Sweden

0

0

1005

1005

Denmark

0

0

306

306

China

0 [19659012] 300

4000

4300

TOTAL

7276

10497

32166

49939

As you can see in the table above, the back loading would nature is even more pronounced than for models S and X. In any case, it all boils down mmen with this summary of all the models combined, for the whole geographically in combination:

TOTAL Q1

January

February

March

Q1 2019

Model 3

7276

10497

32166

49939

Model S

1701

1687

4051

7439

Model X

1911

2011

3797

3797

TOTAL

10888

14195

40014

65097

As you can see in the table above, bottom line number is 65,097 units. Where can I go wrong here? I see the biggest variable being a big fleet sale, a kind of canal filling that comes from China. I don't think Germany will be enough to make a significant difference (1000 or so units?). No, if I'm wrong, it will be in China.

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Notice: I am / we are short TSLA. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I do not receive compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with a company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

Additional information: Upon submission of this article for publication, the author was short TSLA and long FCAU and GM. However, posts can change at any time. The author regularly holds press conferences, new vehicle launches and the like, which hosts most major car manufacturers.


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