Isn't it because "Tesla, a public company, promised/projected this production goal"?
I am not saying that they will, and I hope they will not.
But since a few weeks, I do not completely rule out the possibility anymore. Because if only some of their problems, that are being reported right now, are systemic or hard to fix, 2018 might be a bad year for Tesla...
Since the eighties there has been this maximal version of shareholder value, where the only reason for a company to exist is to maximize returns to shareholders. This was promulgated by private equity firms who would take over a firm and destroy many of the good things that a company was doing that didn't generate profits in order to increase returns to shareholders. Prior to the PE hostile takeover boom, there was a general understanding that shareholders were very important, but not the only stakeholder in a corporation.
If you invest in Tesla though, don't count on the corporate raider philosophy of stock ownership. They may have been able to get other companies in line with the threat of a hostile takeover, but Tesla has protective provisions that make it nearly impossible to do a hostile takeover of Tesla. For better or worse, Tesla is whatever Elon Musk wants it to be. If you're a shareholder, you're just along for the ride.
What has really changed is how money moves in the markets and particularly the degree of short-termism being expressed by investors. That has a lot to do with the tremendous growth in available securities (related to opportunity cost), the increased efficiency of capital markets, dramatically lower transaction costs, and the general velocity of capital in the system. And of course, it’s just inherently easier to project near term than long term outlook and always will be.
If you don't like what they're doing, you are free to divest. This is a free market after all!
The general reading of the fiduciary duty to shareholders is that directors of corporations are bound to promote the value of the corporation for the benefit of the shareholders.
The primary means shareholders have to change the direction of the company is to elect a different board of directors. In the case of Tesla, that requires a 2/3 majority, and Elon holds 27% of the stock.
I agree with this. But IMO Tesla and the like are different because they're tapping into something more. People are actually excited about electric cars now, and they're willing to put money toward the goal and let Musk steer his company, taking them along for the ride.
Comparing a 80 year old company production with a 14 year old company and expecting the same production power is unrealistic.
One would think that a daring entrepreneur tackling all the important problems of our time would be the beloved poster child of HN, but no, apparently he has failed to meet production goals or something so obviously he sucks.
That doesn't mean they should halt all their other projects in the pipeline. If anything, IMO, stopping all their other projects would mean there are bigger production issues then they officially shared. Which would be much worse.
Revealing Semi, proves that they are on the right path (they were supposed to reveal semi at the end of this year anyway), minus a temp setback.
I think most people are making a much bigger deal out of this setback.
Yes, Tesla not revealing the semi would be PR equivalent of acknowledging deep problems. But revealing does not prove they will be shipping relevant numbers in relevant timeframe either.
Hand welding could be because their auto bot welding parts were having issues, and are in the process of fixing them. Is it really that bad? the alternative would be sitting on their butt while the bots are fixed - resulting is zero cars made. Which would have a much much worse public perception?
The other official reason is battery pack issue (could be related to welding, who knows). Again Battery pack is their defacto business, Tesla is essentially a big battery pack strapped into a car. They know how to put batteries better than almost anyone else in the market - if anyone can bounce back from this setback quickly - it's Tesla.
So, again, I don't see a huge issue. I see temp setbacks.
I will take slow production rate over a massive recall of cars (which happens quite often per year, by car industry veteran), any day of the week.
I don't own and Tesla stocks, or any products made by any companies by Musk - or indirectly profit from his products. I also don't worship him.
I just don't like the general witch hunting mentality on the internet. Where minor setbacks or mistakes are blown way out of proportion.
What you're saying here, in short, is "They're having issues in their core competency. Since it's their core competency, it'll obviously be fixed soon." Phrased in such general terms, it's actually not reason to be optimistic about Tesla's future.
How much faster would Ford or BMW ramp up battery production?
But I love his ideas... I want to believe... I really want his ideas to work.
I wont invest in his companies.. but I'm rooting for them to succeed.
So I suppose he will show some special-ultra-super-hiper-cool project like "cold fusion generator for every house", and people will throw even more money into that black hole. Next year, after all other things he say will not work, he will probably show super ultra Tesla Model Black Hole 5. And he will get even more money.
How many people need to die to stop that hype about one person who mainly tries to do good impression?
1.9kwh per mile and driving 600 miles per day and you can get away with a 400kwh battery. Less actually but my understanding is you want to not charge to 100% for maximum lifespan. Not sure the optimal cost trade offs...
7 cents per kilowatt hour * 1.9 * 600 = ~$80 a day vs
$2.7 a gallon * 600/6(mpg) = $270 a day
$150/kwh for battery with 2000 full cycles is $85 dollars a day without interest(only ~2 year lifespan so w/e and presumably has some residual value also not taken into account)
Seems to work out to about $100 a day in savings?? I feel like I must be off on numbers somewhere. Data on number of cycles doesn't seem to be particularly consistent.
That's insanely cheap, if you can find a place where I can buy batteries for 150$/kWh, please let me know. The cheapest I found are still >300$/kWh.
In NY the price is ~0.2$/kWh 
Also, a 400kWh battery weighs 2 tons. 
7 cents per kwh is a very common industrial rate. Maybe it is a bit low but it's a lot more reasonable than one of the highest residential rates in the country ($.2/kwh).
Let's say 5000lb for batteries + cooling/wires. Semi's routinely have (200gallons *7) 1400lb in fuel or more and a ~500 hp ~3000lb diesel engine. I don't know what the electric equivalent would weigh exactly but Tesla's 362 hp motor is 70lb. Let's say a 500hp one weighs 500lb. 5000+500 - 1400 - 3000 = 1,100. Tractor weights are around 15-20k so ~5-7% weight increase with a pretty generous estimate for cooling/wires and engine weight assuming rest of the drive train is identical.
Tesla's batteries are not that energy dense, they are currently 140 Wh/kg. A 400Kwh battery will weigh at least 6000 pounds.
A 400Kwh will get you maybe 150 mile loaded range, 200 gallons of diesel in a semi is a 1300 mile range. To compete with a 400Kwh battery pack you only need to carry 25 gallons of diesel.
Charging a 400 kwh will take at least 3 hours on a supercharger, vs a few minutes for diesel. Its simply not practical for "long haul" as claimed. For it to be usable for long haul you need at least 500-600 miles for a days driving then charge overnight (even that is low for a truck driver). 600 miles is a 1200Kwh battery at 24,000 lbs costing more than the truck with some kind of faster charger so it can be ready in 8 hours.
Bottom line diesel is 30x times as energy dense as current battery tech and that not even counting how much efficiency is left on the table for diesel, the various super trucks programs are showing real world 10+mpg on a semi vs the current 6.5mpg standard by doing secondary heat recovery like a power plant among other things.
The Tesla semi might have some use for local urban delivery but I am highly skeptical of any "long haul" highway replacement claims, will be very interested in the real specifications come Thursday.
All else equal you can charge batteries based on a % of their total capacity. Current superchargers can do about 2%/min for a model S in the 0-80% charge range but can't deliver the requisite power for a 400kwh pack. But I also haven't seen very many supercharger stations that would be particularly well suited for truck traffic either, so I'd imagine there will be a new charger/stations as well.
Sure batteries are no where near competing on absolute range of diesel but I don't think they have to. The question is can you get a days driving in without spending hours and hours charging while keeping the battery capital cost/weight reasonable.
You don't need a 1200kwh pack for that because you can take a couple short breaks plus a lunch with supercharging and over double your effective capacity.
We'll see what happens but I'd be very surprised if the announcement doesn't include a new super charger and stations unless they design it for short range point to point only.
I don't know about long-range. But I would be curious where you get the 1.9 kWh/mile and the 600 miles per day figure from?
600 is just random googling of what is a long but not super long day for most truck drivers.
1. Feasibility: Many trucking routes avoid some of the most complex driving tasks (e.g. dealing with pedestrians, city traffic).
2. Labor Cost: In commuter travel, the driver _is_ the cargo, so the utility gain is offset:
utility = cost(operation) - cost(occupancy)
utility = cost(operation)
For those, who think that Tesla should concentrate on the Model 3 first, this is the early product announcement for the semi - production is probably starting in a year only, so there are no real conflicts.
Let's wait how long it takes for the first of those trucks to actually be used.
Current semi-trailers are low-tech, interchangeable and universally compatible.
Introducing a dependency on a specific subset of trailers for a specific tractor, plus the need for charging facilities at endpoints, would make operations much more complicated and expensive.