Tesla CEO Elon Musk has announced today that the automaker is pushing its planned unveiling of its electric truck, Tesla Semi, from October 26 to November 16 as it focuses on Model 3 production and helping out power outage-ridden Puerto Rico.
Tesla disappointed with its Model 3 production during the last quarter with only 260 units. The company blamed the result on “production bottlenecks”.
As Tesla focuses on fixing those bottlenecks and increasing Model 3 production volumes, Musk decided to get rid of the potential distraction that is the unveiling of an entirely new business unit for Tesla; trucking.
The unveiling of Tesla Semi, which was spotted in the wild earlier this week – picture above, has been pushed by just over 2 weeks.
As usual, Musk made the announcement on Twitter:
Musk says that the second part of the reason for the delay is that Tesla will “increase battery production for Puerto Rico & other affected areas.”
Interestingly, Musk reportedly spoke with Puerto Rico Governor earlier today to talk about ways for Tesla Energy to help rebuild the power grid destroyed by the two hurricanes that recently hit the Caribbean.
The timing is certainly interesting and we would be curious to know what was said during that conversation.
Musk was talking about a scalable energy storage and solar power solution with the governor on Twitter. In the meantime, Tesla is shipping Powerwalls, but as we reported, installations have been difficult due to the damaged infrastructure and the fact that some installers have engaged in price gouging.
We should have more information coming out of Puerto Rico on those projects in the coming weeks.
As for Model 3 production, Musk reiterated that Tesla is still in “production hell”. We are going to have a more in-depth report on what that means so far and how it can possibly affect delivery timelines with some exclusive information. Stay tuned.
Update 2: Tesla has offered to cover any non-refundable travel costs incurred by those who had already booked travel to the cancelled October 26th event. Here is the email they just sent out to invitees:
“The first Tesla Truck prototype is completed, but we’re going to push the unveiling event to Nov. 16 so we can devote resources to fixing Model 3 bottlenecks and increasing battery production for Puerto Rico and other affected areas.
If this delay causes any non-refundable or non-changeable travel expenses, please send invoices for travel booked prior to this communication to ReferralSupport@tesla.com and we’ll take care of those for you.
We look forward to hosting you in Hawthorne on Nov. 16.
The Tesla Team”