Faraday Future has just announced in a post on the company’s facebook page that they’ve received a total of 64,124 reservations globally for their FF 91 within the first 36 hours. They did not specify the proportion of “standard” free reservations to $5,000 “priority” reservations, but we can assume that a vast majority of these reservations are of the free variety.
Faraday Future announced their impressive-but-expensive-seeming 2018 production-intent FF 91 concept car two nights ago at CES. You can see our writeup of the reveal here. See how Faraday’s reservation numbers compare against some other EVs below the jump.
Compared to a couple other electric cars which have gone the “reservations” route, this seems like a fairly solid number, but with caveats. Of course, the FF 91 requires no money down, so it’s very easy to make a reservation – in fact, when I opened the page, I even made one by accident. Here’s a few benchmarks, though:
- In 2009, Tesla took 520 reservations over the course of a week after the original Model S reveal. This was three years before the car actually hit the road, when there were probably only three or four digits worth of EVs on the road in the entire US (limited to several hundred Tesla Roadsters, a few RAV4 EVs and various DIY projects), and reservations required a $5,000 deposit. The reveal was fairly well-publicized, but probably not nearly as well-hyped as the Faraday reveal, particularly since it happened at a press event in a parking lot in Hawthorne during the day, rather than at a big night event at CES. Unlike the FF 91, the Model S’ starting price was also announced: $50,000 after tax credits, which makes it expensive, but not as expensive as people are expecting the FF 91 to be.
- In 2010, Nissan took 6,635 reservations in three days, after sending out an email to 100,000 pre-registered interested buyers. Registering for email interest was free, but reservations for the car required a $99 fee. The car was expected to cost $25k after tax credits, which put it in reach of many more buyers than the Model S, though, again, 2010 was very early in terms of EV adoption.
- And, of course, last year Tesla took ~250,000 reservations in 36 hours for the Model 3. The Model 3 had been hyped for years, coming off of the heels of the very successful Model S, and like the Leaf is expected to be reasonably affordable with a ~$27,500 starting price after tax credits. Some people were assuredly motivated to reserve due to the eventual expiration of those tax credits. But the reservation fee was $1,000, which is not insignificant, especially compared to Faraday’s free reservations. Further, Tesla had at least tens of thousands, possibly over 100,000, in-person reservations at Tesla’s retail locations, all made sight-unseen earlier in the day before the actual reveal of the car.
So Faraday’s numbers look okay even in context, but must be taken with the realization that the ease of reserving – essentially signing up for an email list – is certainly going to inflate the numbers significantly. However, they also do not have a very successful previous car and nearly a decade of hype to rely on, so comparing their numbers to the Model 3 seems a little unfair as well.
So let’s see how many of those reservations they can convert into orders, or how many of them get scared away by the eventual pricing announcement. If the selling price of the FF 91 is anything like what our commenters seem to think it will be, and those reservations do all turn into orders, then they’ll probably beat Tesla’s $7.5 billion in a day number (~$200k price x 64,124 reservations = $12.8 billion). But, this seems unlikely.
For its part, Faraday Future says the “FF 91 will have the value, amenities, performance, fit and finish, of an ultra luxury car, at the price of a premium sedan.” Hopefully we’ll know what that means, translated into numbers, soon.