So Many Unsold Teslas Are Piling Up That You Can See Them From Space

Image for article titled So Many Unsold Teslas Are Piling Up That You Can See Them From Space

Image: Patrick Pleul (AP)

Gone are the times when Tesla sold every car it could build fresh out of the factory. We’re now at the point where the company has actually made too many vehicles. The automaker is obviously aware of this, slashing prices on popular models like the Model Y as inventory piles up. Buyers aren’t biting though and now the automaker has so much unsold inventory that, as Sherwood News reports, they’re being stored in lots that can be seen from space.

In Q1 2024, Tesla reported that it made 433,371 vehicles. Of those, 386,810 were actually sold. This means the automaker has an extra 46,561 vehicles it didn’t sell. This can be blamed on the overall EV sales slowdown, plateau, whatever you want to call it. Tesla played a part in this as well as Sherwood pointed out:

“The primary driver of this was an increase in inventory from a mismatch between builds,” Tesla Chief Financial Officer Vaibhav Taneja said of the company’s -$2.5 billion in free cash flow (spending on AI computers was also to blame). “We expect the inventory built to reverse in the second quarter and free cash flow to return to positive again.”

So where exactly are all those thousands of Teslas? They’re just sitting in lots. Using imagery from SkyFi, a satellite imagery marketplace, Sherwood was able to discover just where all those Tesla’s are being stored. Images taken of Tesla’s Texas Gigafactory from a random Thursday in October 2023 and a Thursday from March of 2024 show lots around the factory going from partially or nearly full to completely full in some cases.

Tesla is storing vehicles in other places around the country as well it seems. Satellite images from St. Louis’ Chesterfield Mall shows a lot outside the mall being filled with nearly 500 cars. Even the mall here in my own city of Moreno Valley, California has been used to store Teslas; I recently observed a few hundred Model Ys parked outside Sears. So while Tesla is still selling hundreds of thousands of cars, it would seem that the brand isn’t the hot seller it used to be. It makes you wonder how long they’ll keep acting like we don’t notice that they have thousands of unsold inventory piling up.

Source link