OT: Ol' Musky fulfills 100 MW, 100 day battery promise

Submitted by Dennis on December 7th, 2017 at 10:25 AM
Just as the title says, http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/12/01/history-making-worlds-bigges…, Elon Musk beat his own bet to install a 100 MW battery in Australia within 100 days or the $50M installation would be free. I know I'm reaching when I say this, but greatness often draws criticism. Musk has received criticism for many of his businesses, including some truthful, albeit bitter, remarks about how he relies on subsidies. Regardless, he gets results. Jim Harbaugh receives, seemingly, the same amount of unnecessary hate, and I want all Michigan fans to know that it's because they're intimidated by greatness.


a different Jason

December 7th, 2017 at 1:44 PM ^

Our DNR has committed themselves to keeping a vibrant population of muskies in a few lakes around the state. I know some guys love catching them but when you are ice fishing and one lays down under your hole and you can't see any other fish for an hour it gets pretty sickening. They smell awful too, have you noticed that? Pull out a 45 incher inside a shack and you just about gag.


December 7th, 2017 at 10:36 AM ^

He doesn't f**k around, I'll give him that. Kind of guy I'd like to work with. Expectations are always as high as nuts on a camel, but at least you always know what to expect.

People around these parts just piss away millions of dollars, waste time, delete trouble tickets that make them look bad, deny their colossal f-ups and then just throw fake ass parties to pat each other on the balls for a job well done.

/rant over, sorry for the random vent.


December 7th, 2017 at 10:47 AM ^

Tesla is, so far as I can tell, a very chaotic organization right now. On the other hand, SpaceX seems like the bees knees, and if given the clearance could started manned flight soon. I like the technical work on his batteries. 

What I don't like is the adulation he recieves that his outsized with what he has accomplished in the automotive spectrum. The model 3 is largely vaporware still. He's had 1970's style quality issues with his more expensive offerings, and his labor relations are for shit. They might turn it around, the cars certainly are fast and luxurious. But they aren't there yet with quality and production and don't look close. The company burns through money and people praise him like he is the Steve Jobs of cars. Right now the company strikse me like Jag in the early 80's when I was a kid. Super nice cars. Performed great, when they ran. And some nob was always coming off in your hand. Design? A. Execution? D. 

But tell someone waiting on a model 3 to get a Bolt and they look at you like you just asked them to get a horse and buggy. 


December 7th, 2017 at 11:49 AM ^

Disagree.  And no, of course he's not suppose to do that and he never said he should.  His point, which is accurate, is that Musk is the golden boy of a few things and when you really dig into the shiny toys he's built that everyone gets a hard on for, you realize the products aren't as great as people think they are.  Friend of my got a 90d and it was in the shop more than he was able to drive it.


December 7th, 2017 at 1:59 PM ^

More annoyed with the fan boy attitude. It does tend to be a thing very true of cars; you get customer loyalty far outside of what the reality is. Cars are an emotional purchase at the core of it. But in general I'm better with people at least being real about it. I love my Ford. I can list all the reasons I like it. But I'm not going to say it's the BEST FULL SIZE EVER or it's TRANSFORMATIVE or whatever. It's a car that fits my wants and needs well. 

I run into many who will say they want an electric car because they want to shake things up. But they won't even think about a Bolt or Leaf. It has to be a Tesla; despite his labor issues. Despite his quality issues. Despite the model 3 still being in manufacturing hell (his words, not mine). 

That's fine as far as it goes. But don't blow smoke up my ass about how its the best thing ever. It's not even the best thing on the market right now. 

You can make a much stronger case for the Model S; it doesn't really have many competitors for electric supercar; so if that's what you want then they are pretty much the only game in town for now. 

Blue In NC

December 7th, 2017 at 11:28 AM ^

I think that's a somewhat fair point and, full disclosure, I am one of those Model 3 waiters so I am biased.  That said, while you can criticize the Tesla business plan and the amount of hype it gets, it is largely responsible for potentially transforming the entire auto industry.  Very large automakers are now talking about complete or partial transformation of their production to EVs within 5 years.  Obviously some of that has nothing to do with Telsa (Nissan has definitely played a role) but I think a large share does result directly from Tesla's efforts.  That type of massive shift was almost unthinkable 5 or 10 years ago.

And not sure that I agree that the Model 3 is vaporware when there are actual customers driving them on the streets.  Vaporware implies prototypes and designs rather than a finished product.  Just because 400,000 people are on a wait list doesn't make the product vaporware.


December 7th, 2017 at 2:10 PM ^

The model 3 exists,  but it's hardly anything like a successful launch. If Toyota dropped the next gen Prius as badly they'd be (rightly) crucified.  And if they started dumping people on that line they'd be excoriated as well. Musk seems immune from this.  

I'll give you the point of industry shake up. But I don't think its as earth shaking as all that; more of a speed up with the industry leaning hybrid electric and then electric. But he did make one hell of an impact with the Model S and it's speed and range. 

He's not a horrible guy. Tesla, though I'm not a fan of the labor practices I've read about, isn't a horrible company. But they are one that is chewing through money and not producing as well or as much as promised. 

Maybe it goes the amazon route, but that is far from certain. They have to fix Model 3 production and deliver the car, satisfy the massive back order, and keep the quality up doing it. That's a tall order. 

If I was in the market for an electric, all things being equal, I'd go for a bolt. Or maybe a plug in Prius or a Volt. I'd get it sooner. 

Longballs Dong…

December 7th, 2017 at 2:49 PM ^

"largely responsible for potentially transforming the entire auto industry."  that's a bit much.  I could make a better argument that Google transformed the auto industry by going after autonomous driving.  Neither are very good arguments.  Teslas are cool cars, with cool tech that are also very fast.  That is why they sell.  Put a gas engine in those exact cars and I think they sell a lot more (if you can match performance).  Total EV sales are still tiny - under 1% of the market - and Tesla sales are going down.  Model S sold about 29,000 in 2016, in 2017 they'll sell under 25,000.  You can say that they are offering the X (basically flat 2016 to 2017)and 3 which hurt sales, but that's a big problem if cars in other segments eat your core sales.  Just for grins, the F-150 (just one vehicle) is on pace to sell about 900,000 units in 2017.  That one car accounts for more sales than the entire EV market 5 fold. 

Model 3 will really determine if he can transform a market, but that already seems unlikely.  Those $30k cars cost $45-60k by the time you add all the features.  There a lot of very nice small cars for $50k.   


Blue In NC

December 7th, 2017 at 3:26 PM ^

Sure, if you look at the industry numbers right now.  But the industry has basically been static for years.  Now all of the sudden, after watching Tesla take 400,000 reservations for a car that was not going to be built for 1.5 years later, Audi, Volvo, GM, Ford, Mercedes, etc. are talking about huge investments and productions of EVs in the next 5 years.  Certain govenments are talking about mandates of EVs in the future.  You think that happens without the popularity and publicity of Tesla?  Sorry, I don't think so.


December 8th, 2017 at 1:17 AM ^

in (I think) an interview with Charlie Rose, Musk admitted that the auto industry was going towards EVs and that Tesla maybe accelerated it by 10 years, but that it was inevitable so he doesn't deserve credit for transforming the industry (but the context was that he thinks SpaceX is transforming space travel because no one else was doing it and no one else might have done it for a long time, he claimed).


December 7th, 2017 at 1:44 PM ^

I've owned a Model S for 4.5 years now, and the car has been flawless: extremely well-made, fun to drive, virtually maintenence-free. Musk has delivered what he promised: a car that costs more up front but less over the life of the car. I have had literally no problems with the car.

He decided not to create or involve dealerships because their business model relies on service to create a great deal of income. The S (and now the X) have very good warranties that back this up (8 years, unlimited miles on the battery & entire drivetrain).

My interactions with Tesla as an organization have been wonderful as well. Again, they seem to genuinely want to keep EV-adopters happy rather than just make a quick buck.

Say what you will about Musk the man, but I believe he's succeeded with Tesla. Obviously, the next year or two will be extremely telling if he can get up to the goal of 500,000 Model 3's produced per year. If he reaches this level, how can you consider this company anything but a huge success (and consider them a major automotive manufacturer)? When is the last time since the early 1900's that a startup auto maker succeeded in the U.S.?


December 7th, 2017 at 2:16 PM ^

he's a ballsy risk taker. I'm not bashing him. If he gets up to 500K/year quickly without quality issues, it will be amazing. He's not even close at this time though. And while I (honestly) am happy that your model S hasn't had issues, he's had lots of issues that any other manufacturer would get nailed for. He's getting a bye now. I don't think he should. But that's just my opinion. 

5th and Long

December 7th, 2017 at 5:03 PM ^

I've had a model S for over 2 years.  Virtually maintenace free.  I had two minor issues - driver side door handle stopped presenting, and driver's side floor mat velcro came off.  Both were fixed free of charge by an on-site technician within a day.  I've owned Jeep, Chrysler, Ford, BMW, Chevy, Dodge and Pontiac over my life.  Hands down Tesla is best built, most maintenance free car I've ever owned.  Also, fastest and smoothest ride, and quietest ride.

Poster above who asserted Tesla's sales were down for 2017 - numbers are wrong.  Tesla will deliver 100k S & X cars this year.

JFW - Tesla's not at "mass" production level yet.  They were launching electric cars when others weren't in the game, and so they had to also built out / continues to build out infrastructure to support that.  Charging network infrastructure.  Battery production infrastructure.  They had to build out "dealership" sales network.  What Tesla has acheived in a short period is remarkable.  Imagine Ford starting today and simultaneously inventing the car AND building out a gas stations infrastructure and a dealship and service network at the same time.  

Why people fanboy -- and i'm not one -- is that he's a visonary.  He revolutionized credit card payments and bank transfers with PayPal.   He said he was going to push the automotive industry into electric.  He did.   There were massive hurdles, and there were plenty of experts who said he'd fail.  He bet that a private company could do what NASA does.  He's done it with SPACE X.  He's betting people can hyper-travel between major cities.  Odds are that will happen.  

5th and Long

December 8th, 2017 at 1:26 PM ^

But Tesla's press release from Q3 - where they delivered 26,150 cars.  Delivery means to a customer and paperwork is complete.  There were 4k in transit -- meaning not completed to customer, that get counted in Q4.  They expect to deliver about 100k S & X models in 2017


Q3 Deliveries

14,065 - Model S

11,865 - Model X

220 - Model 3


4820 -  Model S X in transit, counted as deliveries in Q4




December 7th, 2017 at 5:43 PM ^

Yes and no, would be nice for the feeling of accomplishment but the, "I don't care how much you need to work to get it done", would likely wear old quickly.

I could be wrong but I don't think the 40hr work week is standard at Tesla, and sounds like similar factory complaints as the Amazon warehouses etc.

The Mad Hatter

December 7th, 2017 at 10:46 AM ^

He's either a direct report or one level below that as they interact almost every day.

Everyone that works for him thinks he's a genius.  Maybe a little crazy, but absolutely brilliant.