Since being unveiled in November 2019 Tesla has amassed more than 1.5 million reservations for the Cybertruck, according to unofficial estimates. Despite that immense popularity Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas believes the Cybertruck may end up being an “enthusiast/cult car” with limited production.
Jonas revealed this thoughts in a new investor note published on Thursday after his visit to Giga Texas for Investor Day, where he got to see the latest beta production version of the Cybertruck. According to the analyst he believes Tesla will limit production of the Cybertruck to about 50,000 units per year, a figure which would take the automaker around 30 years to work through the order backlog.
Jonas bases this theory on a number of factors. First he says that a lot has changed with Tesla since the Cybertruck was first unveiled more than four years ago, most importantly financially. “…the scale and scope of ambitions for the company has evolved meaningfully since the Cybertruck unveil,” Jonas wrote.
Another aspect of Jonas’ theory is related to the Cybertruck unique design, which he says can be a positive but also a negative. “We feel the Cybertruck carries more value in a cultural/zeitgeist sense than in a direct economic sense,” he says, explaining that if they all come out of the factory looking the same (i.e., no paint options), will it still be unique?
“…how many Cybertrucks can roll up to a parent-teacher conference or youth soccer match at the same time before losing some of that indescribable…something?”
It is because of this that Jonas believes Tesla will at the most produce 100,000 units per year once production ramps up. He even goes so far as to suggest Tesla should limit production to an artificially low number, which he sets at 420,699, and instead produce a more “conventionally designed variant to hit larger parts of the core pickup truck market.”
Tesla is still guiding for Cybertruck production to begin later this year, and that volume production will begin in 2024. Even with production just around the corner we still don’t know the final specs or even the price of the electric truck, although as Jonas says “it may prove difficult for Tesla to produce a low-end version of this vehicle for the starting price of $39,990 it had initially targeted.”
You can read the full note from Adam Jonas below.
— JC Oviedo (@JCOviedo6) March 9, 2023