​Tesla: Bad Brakes and Yet Another "Thrilling" Death

Tesla is one of the most popular short ideas around. Yet, it is also an analyst-loved story stock.

By many metrics, it seems the company should have failed already.

An analyst stated the original idea of a $35,000 version was ‘kind of laughable'.

Fraudulent Claims

Cars for the Masses Not

On that amusing story, shares jumped 4% as bullish analysts upped their target based on the rising margins.

"Berenberg analyst Alexander Haissl raised his price target to $500 from $470 in anticipation of better-than-expected Model 3 gross margins."

Margin? What Margin?

The company is losing huge amounts of money on every car it produces.

Consumer Reports Cites Braking Issues

  • The Tesla’s stopping distance of 152 feet from 60 mph was far worse than any contemporary car we’ve tested and about 7 feet longer than the stopping distance of a Ford F-150 full-sized pickup.
  • CR’s experience with the Model 3’s braking is not unique. Car and Driver, in its published test of a Model 3, said it noticed “a bizarre amount of variation” in its test, including one stop from 70 mph that took “an interminable 196 feet.
  • “I’ve been testing cars for 11 years,” Car and Driver Testing Director K.C. Colwell said in an interview with CR, “and in 11 years, no car has stood out with inconsistent braking like this. Some trucks have. . . . It was just weird.”
  • Another major factor that compromised the Model 3’s road-test score was its controls. This car places almost all its controls and displays on a center touch screen, with no gauges on the dash, and few buttons inside the car. This layout forces drivers to take multiple steps to accomplish simple tasks. Our testers found that everything from adjusting the mirrors to changing the direction of the airflow from the air-conditioning vents required using the touch screen.
  • These types of complex interactions with a touch screen can cause driver distraction because each act forces drivers to take their eyes off the road and a hand off the steering wheel.
  • The Model 3’s stiff ride, unsupportive rear seat and excessive wind noise at highway speeds also hurt its road-test score. In the compact luxury sedan class, most competitors deliver a more comfortable ride and rear seat.

It does have amazing acceleration and the CR staff found the car "thrilling" to drive. But is that what one expects for $78,000?

What about paint?

Amazingly, paint is included in the price.

Musk "Tesla Might Lose Money and Die"

Superhuman Safety

Safety First

Fresh on the heels of "superhuman" safety comes news of another crash.

Thrilling? Certainly!

What can be more thrilling than bad brakes, exploding batteries, and horrific crashes?

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

Comments
No. 1-15
stillCJ
stillCJ

Editor

The F-150 would stop a lot better if it is loaded with some weight on the rear axle. Comparing an empty pickup to a car is not valid.

Rengaw
Rengaw

Yeah, and expensive too - certainly a car that is not manufactured for us, Austrian economists.

SleemoG
SleemoG

Tesla -- unsafe at any speed redux

aqualech
aqualech

Some of these crashes seem to be related to autopilot. Others though, the high speed ones, seem like your run of the mill exotic car crash that people experience trying to collect on some of that “thrilling” that they paid for. Can’t really blame Elon for that, except for it is to be expected in any high performance car. What is the point of making them capable of such lethal performance? They are just toys for the wealthy, portrayed as some transformative social thing.

KidHorn
KidHorn

There's a white Tesla model S that I've driven behind on my commute home a few times. I assume it must be the same car since there can't be that many on the road. Anyway, every time I get behind it, it brakes for no apparent reason. It will hit the brakes when the car in front of it is far ahead of it and isn't slowing down. I don't know if it's the auto pilot or the driver is doing something else, or the driver is an idiot. I assume, at a minimum, the driver is an idiot for owning a Tesla.

Stories