If you are one of the people that decided to wait a week time before they make the decision to order one of Tesla’s Powerwall batteries, you should know that you waited too long. According to some very detailed analysis from Bloomberg, which are apparently also confirmed by Tesla’s people, the ever-so-anticipated giga-factory will not be able to handle the huge number of pre-orders.
To put all this in numbers, as it stands right now, as many as 60,000 Powerwall batteries (for home use) and 25,000 Powerpack batteries (for commercial applications) are already reserved. Bloomberg says that the company cannot handle any more sales of batteries until at least mid-2016. What is more, the number of orders suggests that the entire capacity of Tesla’s giga-factory, which should begin operation some time next year, will be taken up entirely by home battery production. A quick reminder here, the initial plan for the factory was to mostly focus on electric-vehicle battery development.
The solution that Elon Musk sees here is to try to build a bigger factory. We all know that if anyone can afford to add to the $5 billion that has already been put into the construction of the facility in Reno, that would be Musk. But that is especially the case now when the pre-orders for Tesla’s battery will bring about $800 million to the company’s budget.
Something important that has to be kept in mind here, however, is that the pre-order list is more like a collection of email addresses that belong to people interested in more information- something like a subscription to receive updates. I am pretty sure that quite a number of the people on the list have put their emails there out of curiosity at this stage, more than anything else. I know, I did that, and reading comments on people’s blogs it seems I’m far from being the only one.
Skeptics predict that it would be surprising if even 50% of the pre-orders translate into purchases, but hey – who are they to doubt Elon Musk. After all, the Powerwall batteries have been the most discussed subject around ever since the idea was first introduced. So, let’s wait and see, maybe this invention is indeed marking the end of the fossil fuel era.
Image (c) Tesla