Tesla's grand press conference, absence of new vehicles, and market value decline.

A Report by Zhang Ruichen

Editorial by Pan Tan

At 5:00am Beijing time on March 2nd, Tesla’s highly anticipated 2023 investor day was held at the Texas Gigafactory. However, this event was somewhat disappointing as there were no new cars, 4D radar, HW4.0, or anything else that everyone had been expecting.

But there was a surprise! Unexpectedly, during the half-hour delay, Musk opened his mouth and shouted causing the stock price to drop 1.43%, evaporating nearly $205 billion.

The main content of the event was the unveiling of the third chapter of Tesla’s grand plan. The focus was mainly on the plan for sustainable energy and economics. Musk stated that this overall plan would outline how the future could lead to a completely sustainable energy road. At the press conference, Tesla unveiled its latest long-term strategies and details of the next generation of Tesla’s platform.

About Sustainable Energy

Tesla released a white paper outlining the use of sustainable energy for the Earth, including plans to invest $100 trillion in sustainable energy manufacturing.

Musk stated that currently, traditional fuel cars can only convert 20% of fuel into kinetic energy to drive the vehicle forward, and humorously joked, “In the future, all cars will be pure electric and autonomous. Fuel cars on the road will be no different from riding horses, and even rockets can be electrified.”

To achieve sustainable energy economic development, the following goals must be achieved: 240 TWh battery storage, 30 TWh renewable power, $100 trillion invested in manufacturing, fuel economy energy requirements that account for half and occupy less than 0.2% of land area, 10% of global GDP by 2022, and zero insurmountable resource challenges.“`

About the automotive industry

At this press conference, the following mentions were made about Tesla’s automotive industry:

  1. Cybertruck will be launched this year.

  2. Tesla’s next-generation cars are designed to be assembled by multiple people at the same time, reducing assembly costs by 50%.

  3. Tesla’s next-generation platform will reduce silicon carbide by 75%, and permanent magnet motors will not use rare earth materials at all.

  4. All future models will shift to a 48-volt power system.

  5. Tesla’s next-generation cars will redesign the controller to reduce the complexity and cost of electronics.

  6. Tesla will create a global fleet of electric vehicles with about 85 million cars.

  7. Tesla’s Vice President, Grace Tao, said that the company has reached the milestone of producing 4 million cars, with a goal of producing one car every 45 seconds.

Although Musk’s “Grand Plan” in sustainable energy economics is admirable, Tesla is ultimately an automaker, and users and consumers are looking forward to seeing new Tesla products rather than a Cybertruck after three years. There have been various speculations about Tesla’s new cars (possibly named Model Q) outside long ago, such as a $150,000 Tesla, a crossover travel car, the standard automatic driving assistance hardware, and a tri-cell lithium battery. However, Tesla officials have remained silent on this matter, and there even seem to be rumors that Tesla is preparing to renovate its best-selling Model Y. Does it seem that there is still life in the Model 3 and Model Y offerings?

On the processing side, Drew Baglino, a Tesla executive, said that the lithium refining plant in Corpus Christi, Texas, has broken ground and will begin refining lithium there at the end of the year. The goal is to begin production within 12 months and refine lithium into battery-grade lithium chemicals.

Musk has stated that if the production capacity of new energy increases as planned by wind, solar, battery, and automotive sectors before 2030, energy 100% sustainable can be achieved before 2050. He also mentioned lithium resources, saying that the key to producing new energy batteries is to limit the production capacity of purified lithium elements rather than finding lithium mineral resources. Currently, the extraction of lithium is a limiting factor.

“`According to Tesla, “the new car will be later.”

About Artificial Intelligence

At the event, Musk showcased Optimus, the humanoid robot, for the second time, demonstrating its current capabilities. In the video, one Optimus exhibited walking ability, while another Optimus assembled a new Optimus. The progress made in walking and working compared to the previous Tesla AI Day was clearly felt, although Musk himself admitted that the Optimus displayed at the previous AI Day “actually didn’t work.”

The focus was on the fully automatic driving section brought by Tesla this time. In terms of data, Tesla’s director of autonomous driving software, AshokElluswamy, stated that Tesla will use artificial intelligence and other methods to solve complex planning problems, and positively update the automatic labeling system. By using driving data from eight cameras for automatic labeling, a single three-dimensional simulated space is formed, enabling continuous iteration and optimization of visual algorithms.

Tesla also claimed to have achieved millisecond-level delay when encountering complex problems, and released FSD (Full Self-Driving) collision data: with FSD Beta, Tesla experienced only three collisions per 10,000 miles of driving, while other drivers in the US experienced five collisions per 10,000 miles of driving. This does not necessarily prove that the safety of Tesla’s FSD is much higher than that of human drivers, and even in China where there are many cars and chaotic roads, users cannot rely on the current capabilities of automated driving with ease. After all, Tesla’s brake malfunctions occur every year, especially recently.

Overall, in my opinion, there was nothing extraordinary about Tesla’s Investor Day event. It was just a way for Musk to express his forward-thinking ideas. Although we all know that Musk’s vision extends beyond the automotive industry, after looking at this event, I only came away with the impression that Musk wants to “save the Earth”.

This article is a translation by ChatGPT of a Chinese report from 42HOW. If you have any questions about it, please email bd@42how.com.