Morgan Stanley auto analyst Adam Jonas has been bullish on Tesla Motors. But he added to the company’s woes Wednesday when he slashed its sales outlook in the face of falling oil prices.
Jonas predicts that the luxury electric-car maker will only be able to sell 300,000 vehicles by 2020.
Cheap gas prices could be partly responsible, since the narrative at the start of this month was that plunging prices had contributed to consumers returning to their SUV- and pickup-loving habits. (Electric vehicles didn’t sell badly in November either, particularly the Nissan Leaf.)
But this segment in CNN Money’s story presents an other interesting angle:
The biggest drag on Tesla sales will be the lower-priced, mass market Model 3 expected in showrooms in about three years.
Jonas’ doubts that Tesla will be able to price the Model 3 in the $35,000 range as many have been expecting. He’s now thinking the price could be closer to $60,000.
Tesla’s philosophy is that it won’t put out a vehicle that doesn’t meet its own, and founder Elon Musk’s, high expectations. See this post from November, about how the company wasn’t bothered about delaying production of the crossover-utility vehicle Model X, which is now expected in showrooms until the third quarter of 2015.
Tesla’s stock has fallen precipitously since Sept. 4, when it was $286.04. It closed at $197.81 on Tuesday.