Despite Tesla’s recent Model 3 production burst at the end of the quarter, the automaker is still looking at an insanely long backlog of reservations for the vehicle.
Tesla has confirmed still having about 420,000 Model 3 reservations, which would take about 19 months to deliver at the current production rate.
The automaker updated the tally in a press release yesterday:
The remaining net Model 3 reservations count at the end of Q2 still stood at roughly 420,000 even though we have now delivered 28,386 Model 3 vehicles to date. When we start to provide customers an opportunity to see and test drive the car at their local store, we expect that our orders will grow faster than our production rate. Model 3 Dual Motor All Wheel Drive and Model 3 Dual Motor All Wheel Drive Performance cars will also be available in our stores shortly.
A surprising prediction that went mainly unnoticed is that Tesla expects reservations will grow faster than production once they begin test drives, which are apparently gradually starting now.
Tesla received an incredible number of reservations for the Model 3 early on even before most people had a chance to see the car in person.
The number of reservations peaked at close to half a million and started to drop as Tesla changed reservations into orders and delayed the base version with the standard battery pack.
Now it expects to go back to growth with a fleet of display and test drive vehicles.
That’s a point that often gets lost in all the craziness around the Model 3: relatively few people have driven the car.
Tesla had a big quarter for Model 3 deliveries, but it will be nothing compared to the next quarter since Tesla had over 10,000 Model 3’s in transit to customers at the end of the quarter.
Once people get their cars and start showing them to their friends and around their neighborhoods, and Tesla starts giving test drives, the number of people who have driven a Model 3 will skyrocket.
Now, based on the current reviews, which have been mostly glowing, and my own experience with the car and people who have driven the car, I think the enthusiasm for the Model 3 will be even crazier in the coming weeks and months, which is saying a lot.
I don’t know about Tesla’s prediction that reservations will actually start to grow faster than production, but it doesn’t sound impossible to me.
In my opinion, the actual reservation process doesn’t mean much for people in North America who want a Model 3 with Long Range battery pack. I think that is mostly going directly to order these days.
But for those who want the less expensive standard battery pack starting at $35,000, that’s where the reservation process comes into play.
The only way that list has become shorter is from people getting tired of waiting and canceling or switching to the Long Range option.
I think that this list is going to grow a lot in the coming weeks due to an accelerated delivery rate and test drives.
For people based in the US, I think they should start thinking about the possibility that they will only have access to a reduced federal tax credit of $3,500 instead of $7,500.
That’s unless the new effort to extend the credit is successful, but I have my doubts as we discussed yesterday.
What do you think? Let us know in the comment section below.