- Tesla held its 2019 shareholder meeting on Tuesday in Mountain View, California.
- CEO Elon Musk said demand for Tesla’s vehicles continues to be strong, despite concerns sparked by disappointing first-quarter delivery numbers.
- Musk predicted the company’s upcoming Model Y SUV will generate more demand than the three vehicles Tesla currently offers – the Model 3, Model S sedan, and Model X SUV – combined.
- Musk added that as battery production increases, Tesla will have to consider other parts of the supply chain, which could include entering into the mining business.
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Tesla held its 2019 shareholder meeting on Tuesday in Mountain View, California.
“It’s been a hell of a year, but a lot of good things are happening,” CEO Elon Musk said before highlighting the sales and performance capabilities of the electric-car maker’s Model 3 sedan against its electric and gas-powered rivals.
“Resisting the temptation to pick on competitors. I will not do that,” Musk said.
Musk said demand for Tesla’s vehicles continues to be strong, despite concerns sparked by disappointing first-quarter delivery numbers.
“I want to be clear,” he said. “There is not a demand problem.”
Tesla is selling far more vehicles than it can produce, Musk said, and has a “decent shot” at delivering more vehicles in the second quarter of this year than in any prior quarter. Its current record came in the fourth quarter of 2018, when it delivered 90,700 vehicles.
Musk also touted the company’s upcoming Model Y SUV, which it plans to begin producing near the end of next year. He predicted the vehicle will generate more demand than the three vehicles Tesla currently offers – the Model 3 and Model S sedans, and the Model X SUV – combined.
Musk discussed other potential sources of growth, saying construction on Tesla’s factory in Shanghai, China, was progressing quickly. He said Tesla hoped to one day build a factory on each continent to lower transportation costs.
In addition to the Model Y, Tesla also plans to introduce a semi truck, called the Semi, and a pickup truck. The company’s ability to expand its product lineup depends on its ability to produce a large number of batteries, Musk said.
“There’s not much point in adding product complexity if we don’t have enough batteries,” he said.
Musk said that as battery production increases, Tesla will have to consider other parts of the supply chain, which could include entering into the mining business.
“We might get into the mining business. I don’t know,” Musk said. “We’ll do whatever we have to to ensure that we can scale at the fastest rate possible.”
Tesla will also grow its energy business this year, at a minimum doubling deployments of storage capacity through its home and commercial batteries, Musk said. In 2018, Tesla deployed 1.04 GWh of energy storage, up from 358 MWh in 2017.
Musk also repeated predictions about the future capability of Tesla’s autonomous-driving technology, saying Tesla vehicles will be able to drive without human supervision next year.
At the beginning of the meeting, shareholders voted in line with recommendations from Tesla’s board of directors for six of eight proposals. They rejected proposals to lower the voting threshold required for shareholder initiatives to pass and reduce the length of the terms served by members of the company’s board of directors from three to two years.
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