The 'delivery wave' at Tesla is causing problems with logistics, not demand

I've been monitoring Tesla deliveries for years. My job depends on it. Typically, Tesla vehicle deliveries are concentrated at the end of the quarter as the electric automaker scrambles to make (or beat) "the numbers" predicted by Wall Street analysts. Why? This often acts as a catalyst to increase investor confidence. In turn, the company's stock price can rise.

Above: A look at the ever-growing Tesla Fleet (Photo: EVANNEX)

That didn't happen this quarter and the stock price was impacted (negatively). Although these things don't alway precisely correlate — vehicle deliveries often impact Wall Street's "vision" for Tesla coming into (and out of) the company's quarterly earnings. 

At EVANNEX, we often see our own Tesla accessories sales increase at end of quarter — particularly if Tesla increases vehicle deliveries. New Tesla owners want to get accessories, right away, upon taking delivery. In much the same way a new home owner tends to go out and furnish their house after moving in, new car owners want to "furnish" their new cars with what they need. 

Recently, we saw our timeline shift back slightly at end of quarter which appeared to align with Tesla's logistics-related delays. My take: this clearly was a logistics issue for Tesla, not a demand issue. I recently appeared on Fox Business News show, The Claman Countdown, and discussed this with Liz Claman.

Above: Discussing Tesla's 'logistics' dilemma with Liz Claman on The Claman Countdown (Source: Fox Business News)*

Wall Street seems confused on this topic. According to Al Root at Barrons, "Tesla stock was getting hammered after weaker-than-expected third-quarter delivery numbers... [some] believe the shortfall was due to logistics. That isn’t what investors are worried about, however. They’re worried about demand."

"The delivery shortfall amounted to about 14,000 or 15,000 units. That’s the biggest miss relative to expectations in quite some time. Investors were reacting with nervousness," reports Barron's.

"More than a few analysts gave the company a pass, blaming changing vehicle logistics for the miss. Tesla said it had a much higher number than usual of 'cars in transit' at the end of the quarter as the company transitioned 'to a more even regional mix of vehicle builds.' That makes some sense. Tesla, after all, recently opened up two new plants in Texas and Germany. Sales patterns have been changing," according to Barron's.

We're seeing the same thing. As a company inside the Tesla ecosystem serving owners with aftermarket accessories, it's crystal clear to me — Tesla is delivering plenty of cars. We're seeing the usual vehicle deliveries "bump" but it's coming slightly after the typical end-of-quarter timeframe. 


*FYI: If you're a Cybertruck fan and looking for more info on the Cyber Backpack, check out our reservation page.