Tesla displayed an interior refresh for their Model X at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show. Photo by Joe Nuxoll.Enlarge Photo
Tesla's Model X electric crossover will be delayed again for additional quality and validation testing, the company said in its latest earnings report. Deliveries will now begin in the third quarter of 2015.
Putting a positive spin on the situation, Tesla Motors [NSDQ:TSLA said the delay will cost it some short-term profits but will ensure that customers are satisfied with the final product when it does arrive. Tesla says the delay will help it "achieve the best Model X possible" and ramp up production faster than it did with the Model S, albeit later than originally planned.
The company then took a shot at other carmakers, noting that "many other companies do not follow this philosophy ... and may be a more attractive home for investor capital."
When it was unveiled in early 2012 as a prototype, the Model X was expected to begin deliveries in December 2013, but that deadline was extended to December 2014 the following March. This past February, CEO Elon Musk nudged that timeline back a little further, saying deliveries would start in March 2015.
Tesla has yet to show a final production version, although it has built Beta prototypes that are closer to production-spec than test mules. It also considers the launch of the dual-motor all-wheel-drive system in the Model S "D" to be an aspect of Model X development.
The company said reservations for the gull-winged electric crossover were "rapidly growing," and noted that it shut down production in July to retool for higher volumes of the Model S sedan, as well as the Model X. It reorganized its plant in Fremont, California so pre-production Model X bodies could be built on their own body line without affecting Model S production.
All told, Tesla hopes to be building "more than 2,000 vehicles per week" by the end of 2015, which would bring its annual production to 100,000 vehicles or more.