The first Model X Signature Edition may be delivered this Sunday, and Tesla is reportedly kicking on its production line into full swing.
On the Tesla Motors Club forum, Signature buyers with low-numbered places in the long reservation list have said this week Tesla began emailing them one by one to let them know their cars will soon be ready for delivery.
The person with Model X No. 2 – the second on the reservation list that is – indicated yesterday she could have received her car sooner, but her schedule has her delaying her “confirmed” delivery to Sunday.
UPDATE: 12/19/15: Model X VIN No. 1 has been delivered. The rest of this story as far as we know is accurate, and No. 2 is due tomorrow. We were conservative with this article’s title, knew TMC posters had said it could have been as soon as yesterday, but did not have that info to report. Now we do. The Signature deliveries have begun.
Meanwhile, according to CleanTechnica, a Tesla insider has said the assembly line is spooled up to send Model X units down the line so that Model S and Model X are being produced alternately at a 1:1 ratio.
With an estimated 2,000 total unit per week capacity, if this is correct it could mean as many as 1,000 or possibly hundreds of Model X units per week.
Deliveries however could still be slowed as Tesla holds back to update software in Model X crossovers before turning them over to their new owners. In light of Consumer Reports downgrade of Model S and given it tracks new cars, Tesla surely wants trouble free cars to go forth.
The one person getting Model X number 2 is an avid TMC forum poster, highly regarded in the Tesla community, and Tesla has made it clear she is getting her car ASAP.
Whether the pipeline gushes open next week, or delays persist a bit longer, Tesla had projected last quarter it planned hundreds of Model X units being delivered before year’s end, and with two weeks to go, it appears its prediction will be met.
The company is also pushing for a deadline to sell units – of either S or X or both – at the fastest rate it can. To meet its 50,000 minimum year-end guidance, it needs to sell more than twice the units this month worldwide that it sold per month for the first nine months of this year – between 7,100-7,400 this month.
Signature Follows Founders
The first six absolute top-shelf Model X Founders editions were delivered close to three months ago in September. Since then, an estimated 10 more were U.S. delivered in October, an estimated 15 more were delivered in November bringing the Sept. 29 to end-of-November total to 31 estimated sales.
What are going to be delivered now are nearly as well appointed Signatures which can cost with options from $132,000 to the mid $140s.
The exact order of Model X unit deliveries is not strictly according to first VIN first, and while it’s not far off, the order is also not strictly in order of first in line first either.
First cars were the highest tier Founders, and now the Signatures – which for Model S had been the name given to the absolute highest tier – are coming as we speak.
Also determining how Tesla will begin to satisfy the over 40,000 paid reservation holders in line who’ve (in most cases) patiently waited is what other powertrain levels they will be getting.
For example a P90D higher performance trim is expected to get priority over a 90D
At this stage, it appears the P90D will start now, and continue to be delivered into early 2016, the 90D may follow mid-2016 and later, and the 70D could be mid-to-late 2016.
Super Exciting Crossover
The Model X entry point is the 70D priced from $81,200 before federal or state incentives as applicable. For that, as is true of the entire line, Tesla has designed “falcon wing” doors, all-wheel-drive capability, and even the slowest 70D will be blazing quick for a family hauler.
Features like semi-autonomous “Autopilot,” cruise control, a panoramic windshield (that does come equipped with a shade), and options to do 0-60 as quick as 3.2 seconds will make the P90D with ludicrous speed sprint like a Porsche turbo coupe.
How it will fare in the long term will remain to be seen, but since its 2012 reveal, the X has been looked forward to by supporters and buyers as an electric family car like no other.
In addition to a few delays in its production date, it has however also incited to one degree or another disappointments by some who learned things this year that they felt they had not been led to expect.
These include seats that do not fold like the prototypes’ seats did, a $4,000 surcharge for two additional seats over a now-standard five seats when again, the prototypes had seven and CEO Elon Musk has indicated it would be seven.
It will have five, six, or seven seat configurations available, but seven is now an option, as was a quicker on-board charger (OBC) option not revealed by Tesla.
The company said it chose to conceal the 72-amp OBC option on its online configuration screen from buyers specifying their new cars’ build trim. The 72-amp OBC enables faster high-amperage level two (240-volt) charging. For owners using lower amperage level two EVSE, the 48-amp standard OBC would make no difference, and Supercharging is still possible regardless because that level three DC-DC charge bypasses the OBC. However, the optional 72-amp OBC could be doubly quick with Tesla’s 80-amp level two EVSE. And, this 72-amp optional OBC needed to be selected by the configuring buyer and installed on the production line at the factory, could not be retrofitted later, and Tesla initially told no one.
Fans meanwhile have forgiven these issues, chalked up any perceptions as bumps in the road to a well-meaning growing company, and otherwise support for the company has far outweighed gripes.
That Tesla is committed to pushing the technological frontier is clear, as a video showing a visit to the Model X assembly line by a French publication shows.
In fact, Tesla is the only electric car company of its type at the moment. Rumblings have been heard by secretive startup Faraday Future planning a $1 billion plant in Nevada, and German automakers including Audi, BMW, and Porsche have said they will have Tesla competitors too, but today, Tesla is it.
Now over 12-years old, the company has pushed a new market into existence, defied the odds, and at last its second all-new car – excluding the modified-Lotus-chassis Roadster which sold fewer than 2,400 units into 31 countries – is ramping up production.
Get set to start seeing the Model X on the road. Tesla will sell as many as it can make for some time to come.