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Elon on the cc: "We're not showing all of our cards." and "there are a lot of things you don't know about".

Elon on the cc: "We're not showing all of our cards." and "there are a lot of things you don't know about".

Wow! Let the speculation begin! BTW the latter comment was regarding capex and he said "it seems higher because there a lot of things you don't know about".

omarsultan.ca.us | July 31, 2014

That caught my attention too--they were much more cagey this call. I also noticed $100M bump to R&D. What I would love is that they are accelerating the Model 3 and the current dates are just a smoke screen.

O

oildeathspiral | July 31, 2014

One of my guesses: a Tesla pickup. The MX could be the basis for the "platform". Elon has often talked about how an EV could make a great pickup. I've often hoped that Tesla was working on a lot more than we knew about and now we know they are.

hcwhy | July 31, 2014

Sorry for my ignorance, but WTH is a CC ? Somehow I don't think the OP meant cubic centimeters. TYVM

bcimae.co.us | July 31, 2014

I think cc means conference call

txakoli | July 31, 2014

@hcwhy: "Conference Call", I believe.

hcwhy | July 31, 2014

Thanks. I think that's it.

omarsultan.ca.us | July 31, 2014

The other big ticket item I can see eating capex/opex/R&D is developing the self-driving technology.

O

jbunn | July 31, 2014

I hope they are really not tossing resources at self driving technology. Ever seen the Google car? Stylish. Not.

Is a self driving car really on anyone's "must have" list?

What we could use is adaptive cruise, emergency braking, and lane departure/obstacle warning.

SamO | July 31, 2014

@jbunn,

Yes, autopilot (or any variation) is on my "must have" list.

A Tesla that can drive me while I sleep goes on my bucket list.

oildeathspiral | July 31, 2014

Yes cc is conference call.

jbunn

Elon said that he expected the car to drive you from onramp to offramp in the next year.

hcwhy | July 31, 2014

Think of how many more vehicles could be using the same space if they were all computer operated. Lanes could be narrower and there could be tighter separation between the vehicles. It could even eliminate the traffic jam.

renwo S alset | July 31, 2014

All us Marlboro men wouldn't stand for it. Give me liberty or don't tread on me, is my motto.

johncrab | July 31, 2014

Before this thread is further derailed, I don't see the self-driving car replacing the driving experience but I do see it providing some practical solutions such as giving mobility to disabled people who currently have to rely on others in order to get around.

I think the early idea of cars being able to pack onto a highway two feet from each other at high speed is a nightmarish fantasy someone had. I would be far too busy screaming and pounding the brake in that situation.

hcwhy | July 31, 2014

@johncrab...I agree with you...I love driving and would miss it. But maybe these are the good old days....hope not.

P.Mac | July 31, 2014

Hmmm. We pay about $100k for the Tesla because we love to drive. And then they change it so we don't get to drive it any more. I really hope this is one feature with an off button.

TeslaFred | July 31, 2014

@P.Mac . . . Perfect comment. I do not want to pay $100k to not drive.

JZ13 | July 31, 2014

You guys are ignoring those poor folks who have big commutes every day. Anyone who's ever driven in a traffic jam would rather let the car drive them to work and allow them to read/watch movie/etc.

Plus, imagine not having to worry about that extra glass of wine at dinner. Although first gen auto pilot drunk driving would still be illegal, eventually auto pilot becomes so dependable that drunk occupants would be legal.

So I am glad Tesla is spending resources on autopilot. In fact, Elon is personally leading the engineering team developing it.

carlk | July 31, 2014

If it can drop me off at restaurant and go park itself then I will use it.

hcwhy | July 31, 2014

It won't happen tomorrow...and hopefully when it does, it'll have an off switch like P.Mac suggests.

omarsultan.ca.us | July 31, 2014

I am not a huge fan of the self driving thing either, but I think they are working on some killer feature--an extra $100M this year is a chunk of change--cannot think of what else if might be related to.

O

AlMc | July 31, 2014

@JZ13: I don't think Elon is leading a development team on autopilot: Think Mobileye: They have the technology, at $150/vehicles according to their "roadshow". Why invest valuable TM resources: money and engineers when you can buy it for $150/vehicle?

Mathew98 | July 31, 2014

If it can tell other ICE drivers to go fark themselves then I'll use it.

Mathew98 | July 31, 2014

Especially when they are blocking super charger spots...

Al1 | July 31, 2014

Any link to Conference Call?

hcwhy | July 31, 2014

Al1...yes...in topic "Q2 earnings report" presently at the bottom of page 1 of topics.

hcwhy | July 31, 2014

correction "Q2 earnings call webcast"

Red Sage ca us | July 31, 2014

"This... FULLY OPERATIONAL... GIGAFACTORY!!!" -- Emperor Elon Musk

You don't know the POWER of Tesla Motors.

baileycarlson | July 31, 2014

I hope their R&D is secretly experimenting with high energy density but non-rechargable battery chemistries like Aluminum-air which could be easily hot swapped at superchargers. This would not be the main battery but just a range extender for longer trips. There's a thread about it here, http://www.teslamotors.com/forum/forums/tesla-and-phinergy?page=1

johncrab | July 31, 2014

"...and St. Elon raised the hand grenade on high saying, Bless O Lord this thine Holy Hand Grenade that with it thou might blowest thine enemies to tiny bits, in thy mercy. And the Lord did grin..."

pruhawk | July 31, 2014

The US Postal Fleet is getting very old and spends a billion plus a year in gas with the longest mail route less than 200 milles - seems like an esay way for Tesla to sell 400,000 plus vehicles at a high premium as gas savings along justify the purchase.

Not sexy but good for Tesla which is good for us.

jcaspar1 | July 31, 2014

Autopilot is last on my list but then again, I like driving. Give me a bigger motor, the ability to track the car without overheating and better brakes. 2 speed transmission to increase acceleration over 90 mph would be great too. Maybe I just need the roadster 2.

Pickup would be awesome and a huge potential market. The Ford F-150 has been the best selling vehicle for 17+ years with Chevy typically number 2 and the Camry a distance third. Americans love their American Trucks and may warm up to a Tesla truck, where the Japanese have failed to make any significant market share and the Europeans are too afraid to even try.

Red Sage ca us | July 31, 2014

jcaspar1: A 220 kWh battery pack would make for a very nice pickup truck, maybe even Class 3 or Class 4 in towing capability...

johncrab: +1 UP! It's been a long while since I was reminded of The Holy Hand Grenade of lore...

Captain_Zap | July 31, 2014

I'm too much of a control freak to cope with auto-pilot. I don't even trust it on the boat. I might have hit a humpback whale today!

@johncrab - One! two! five!
(That should have gone into the ignore thread.)

shop | July 31, 2014

Given how much executive resources have been used getting the Model X out the door, I doubt they are working on any other platforms right now. I'm with omarsultan. I think it is the self driving technology. Mobile eye is not even close to what is needed for on ramp to off ramp driving. If they are serious about it being out in a year, that is a massive undertaking, and I could easily see it swelling their R&D budget.

oildeathspiral | July 31, 2014

shop

"Tesla watchers, including Model S owners, are paying close attention to Mobileye on discussion forums and investor threads. The company’s prospectus lists Audi, BMW, GM, Mitsubishi, Tesla, Volvo and several other automakers as partners, and the Israeli press has reported that Mobileye and Tesla have teamed up on driverless cars.

“We can simply confirm that we have a business relationship with them,” said Simon Sproule, Tesla’s VP of Communications, in response to an email asking how to best characterize the relationship. “Nothing further to add.” (Thanks Simon!)"

http://www.siliconbeat.com/2014/07/28/tesla-watchers-eye-mobileyes-500-m...

omarsultan.ca.us | August 1, 2014

$100M seems like a lot of money to spend in one year, simply to integrate Mobileye into the Tesla...its possible that its part of the surprise, but for that kind of money, its gotta be something beyond what the other OEMs are doing.

O

2050project | August 1, 2014

@AI1: here is the link to the earnings conference call and shareholder letter, it's the top selection on the page:
http://ir.teslamotors.com/events.cfm

Model ☰ | August 1, 2014

We know that Tesla is working on the autopilot. What he said is that they are working on something wee don't know.

So yes, they are working on autopilot and with Mobileye, and that is a part of this $100M. What's worth debating is What else are they working on?

  • A new model? It might be Model Y, a new Roadster, a truck or some form of new supercar.
  • A new battery chemistry?
  • Something else, something totally surprising
Theresa | August 1, 2014

A rocket car that can fly to Mars perhaps?

Model ☰ | August 1, 2014

@Theresa: No, that's SpaceX not Tesla ;)

But maybe the submarine car? ;)

Dwdnjck@ca | August 1, 2014

Coupe or convertible, that's my guess

Model ☰ | August 1, 2014

I found an another interesting theory here

What could Musk be referring to? In the shareholder letter he mentioned Tesla's ongoing partnership with Daimler to provide drive trains to Mercedes' new electric vehicle. Could there be more agreements with other automakers on the way?

Model ☰ | August 1, 2014

Hmm... The text under the link should be a quote :p

Brian H | August 1, 2014

Yeah. I mean another thing, our CapEx and R&D numbers are better than they appear because there are things you don't know about.

Parsing that, a pure financial implication is that those expenditures will going to start generating large revenue, soon, from currently not-visible sources, to write off the capex and R&D against.

Bighorn | August 1, 2014

@Brian
Please re-write that last sentence--horrible.

Brian H | August 1, 2014

typo: expenditures are going to ...

JZ13 | August 1, 2014

@AIMc - Indeed Elon is personally leading the autopilot engineering team. This was publicly stated last year. He had some free time on his hands when he completed the white paper for the Hyperloop so he announced he was devoting the time spent on that to autopilot. The job listings stated the engineers on that team would report directly to Elon. It's amazing that he can be CEO 3 days a week at Tesla, CEO 3 days a week at SpaceX, Chairman of Solar City, Lead Engineer of Autopilot, husband to actress and father to 5 boys all at the same time.

As far as Mobileye, Elon just said yesterday that he prefers to develop in house because it is far more cost effective. I doubt the final solution to Tesla's autopilot will be licensing a 3rd party product. He has stated many times they will develop their own technology using camera's and software.

AmpedRealtor | August 1, 2014

husband to actress...

You wouldn't know it by watching Elon on The Colbert Report. I didn't see a ring on any of his fingers... trouble in paradise?

Bighorn | August 1, 2014

@AR
There were stories of divorce and alimony circulating, but then they ended up driving cross country together, so like many billionaires, "It's complicated."

Benz | August 3, 2014

"Yeah. I mean another thing, our CapEx and R&D numbers are better than they appear because there are things you don't know about."

I think that they will inform us in 2015 what those things are. Apparently it's more than one. And I am sure that we are going to love them. And I hope that a new 100 kWh battery pack in 2016 for the S/X is one of those things.

I personally am hoping that Franz von Holzhausen and his co-workers at the Hawthorne design center are working on more Tesla model cars (appart from S/X/3). I would love to see them reveal another model car that will be built on the same skateboard platform as the Mode S and the Model X in 2015 or 2016. Anyway, before they start producing the Tesla Model 3.

I remember a scene in the documentary of Discovery Channel "Megafactories". In that scene Elon Musk says that he wants to bring out a new model car every year. Elon Musk does what he says, sometimes there is a delay, but he knows where he wants to go and he will make it happen. Steve Jurvetson once said something like that.

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