What cards is EM hiding in his sleeves?

What cards is EM hiding in his sleeves?

" Yeah. I mean another thing, our CapEx and R&D numbers are better than they appear because there are things you don't know about." That is supposedly a quote from Elon Musk during a call with some big financial people... So what does he know that we do not know?
Has Tesla been able to give the MX have a 350 miles Range?
Has Tesla been able to reduce the price to make the MX a potentially mass marketable car?
Have they been able to make the Mx go from 0-60 in under 4 secs?
What do you think he is holding in his sleeves?

Red Sage ca us | 2 augusti 2014

Something other than what we have been told about thus far. Completely different. Off the charts. But expensive to look into and perfect.

Not sure if this qualifies, and it may not be considered 'R&D' exactly, but I do believe that Tesla Motors will unveil at least three body designs for the Tesla Model ☰. I think they will most likely be a sedan, crossover, and compact sporthatch. I believe that a wagon and minivan will likely come sometime after. I hope that a coupe appears eventually.

Most people seem to expect only one vehicle at launch, and quite a few don't expect to see even that one on public roads prior to 2018. I will personally be pleased to see them all surprised.

Bubba2000 | 2 augusti 2014

Elon must have something disruptive to make those comments. I do not think it just involves adding a few more batteries to the MX and increasing the range, though that is possible if batteries are available. Increasing production capacity beyond the announced 1000/week this year is quite possible; I think the plant upgrade in progress could make that possible. Possible game changer:

Auto-pilot: Tesla may have developed a sophisticated system based on image recognition in cooperation with Mobileye, or something internal. Besides Assisted Cruise Control, it could have active lane tracking, active collision avoidance front/rear with lane changing capability, GPS assisted on-off ramp driving, etc. With multiple cameras, radar/sonar around the car, get a 3D dynamic picture of the surroundings to avoid accidents and assist the auto-pilot. The current systems implemented by BMW, or even GM are quite primitive. Elon certainly would want to keep these techs secret to have a competitive advantage over other ICE/BEVs.

I think the following issues need to be addressed to make the MS/MX dominate their price category:
- Increased Superchargers in the US/Canada, Greater China, etc. Need pay per use HPWCs in cities and remote areas. Got to eliminate "range anxiety".
- Add active safety feature to match cars like the S550. Add tire pressure monitoring and auto-inflation.
- Seats, interior needs to match or exceed cars like the Mercedes, Lexus, etc in the terms of functionality, quality, luxury. Folks in this price range like rich leather, etc. Rear seats, head room got to improve.
- Quality and reliability - MS has done quite well, but the drive train, etc could be made robust. Bearings, gears, etc could be made robust to withstand rapid acceleration, braking, rough handling, etc. That is why companies like Porsche race their cars. You can take a 911 on the race track and really stomp on it, do all all kinds of hi speed turns, etc.

The MS 21" tires are poorly designed. The rims are easily damaged because they stick out... need to be redesigned! Need a different brand of tires that last longer and can handle our rough roads. Tires that wear out in less than 10,000 miles are a big pain. Have to special order them. Then hope the tire shop can install them properly without damaging the rims or the car. Waste of time (1 day!) and money ($2,000 every few months!). I like low maintainance. I got my P85 with 19" and that is good enough, though I can feel the difference relative to the 21" I have tested.

Small knick-knacks like the flimsy vanity mirror covers, etc got to be fixed. I think they need LED head beams that last the life of the car. Less maintainance th better.

David N | 2 augusti 2014

For Elon to keep mum about it , it must be a real hum dinger.
Wouldn't surprise me if it's something that is taken to an entirely new level or never seen before in a automobile.

risingsun | 2 augusti 2014

It must be significant, but I wouldn't read too much into it because Elon is a pretty good promoter too as well as being an amazing engineer and entrepreneur. America should clone him.

FREE ENERGY | 2 augusti 2014

Tesla Model ☰....the "☰" part is just another way to say.....Mod E :-)

T ☰ S L A

vgarbutt | 2 augusti 2014

Tesla has been a cliff hanger of a story from the start!!

GeekEV | 2 augusti 2014

@Fastwalker - OMG! Thank goodness you pointed that out. We never would have realized that in our own!

Sorry for the sarcasm, it's un-characteristically a**hole of me, but it had to be done.

GeekEV | 2 augusti 2014

-in +on

Dang typos and lack of edit.

GeekEV | 2 augusti 2014

@risingsun - it's funny, some people criticize him for his lack of public speaking skills but I kind of like that he comes across unpolished. It makes what he says feel more credible and from the heart.

risingsun | 2 augusti 2014


He lacks the MBA B.S. polish, but he isn't afraid to promote his products or try to kindly suggest the competitors products are inferior. He isn't afraid to dispute a reporter. So he isn't being complete modest, which in business you shouldn't be. He literally laughed at BMW i3 and the Chinese EV's, although I think in the case of the BMW he didn't intend to laugh.

AlMc | 2 augusti 2014

A Tesla truck to compete with the F150/250 series.

AlMc | 2 augusti 2014

New battery chemistry.

AlMc | 2 augusti 2014

Federal Government/Armed services contract for EVs

cantcurecancer | 2 augusti 2014

I think it's going to be advancement in self-driving.

DonS | 2 augusti 2014

Tesla's battery storage and optimization of how it is used in the grid is likely to be bigger business than automobiles. The Solar City tie-in ensures both Tesla and Solar City have the same goal in mind. Economical battery storage is like the early internet; it exists, but there is still a lot of work to figure out how to best use it.

Anemometer | 2 augusti 2014

I don't think its anything to do with self driving vechiles. It has to be to do with battery tech, that is surely what he wakes up an night thinking about... how can we get 400 miles range vehicles on the road for less than $30,000.

Maybe they had some success in the lab at last with nano tech anodes. Or da, da da da, da, dah... working ultra-capcitors at low costs. We forget them when talking about batteries. But they had promised charging times in seconds, until Zenn went bust and the deal with EEstore sort of went quiet. What if... and this would be a market shaker... they have a 50kW ulatra capacitor that charges in, well as fast as you can give it the kW. The limiting factors would only be the size of the cable and local electrical infrasturcture. Range anxiety 0 - Quick EV recharing times 1.

Ok, that's very optimistic. But if you have billions instead of millions to spend and R&D. Even if you only stick an 2kW capcacitor in it maxes out the regen capability by acting as a fast transfer buffer for energy. If you were all English or specifically Liverpool FC supporters - sing to the tune of ... "You......'ll ne....ver again".

Fancy tech auto pilot tech is nice and all that, but Elon wants to see the transport sector become all EV. Adding computers, cameras, control systems and costs and risk won't do that.

Lastly what if they cost a economy-segment car in the pipeline - circa $15,000 with 200+ real world mile range. The Model III is just a bluff to auto makers alllwoing him to build 25 car production lines in what is supposed to be the battery factory. There's a conspiracy for ya. LOL.

Or he could be just talking bollocks to keep the share price up as he wants to buy another 20,000 acres of land in 2 months time. For Gigiafactory 2 and 3.

risingsun | 2 augusti 2014

@cantcurecancer bummer screen name, but I think you are right about the self driving car.

@DonS There will be a huge opportunity in energy demand management with electric vehicles, which will be important with increased solar and wind.

carlgo | 3 augusti 2014

Unexpected partnerships.

Cheaper batteries.

Less range anxiety (due to infrastructure, not magic batteries).

More models, lower price.

Boukman | 3 augusti 2014

I like the idea of super capacitors. Including them in a EV and Using the Tech from the Israeli company that invented the fast charging battery see:

I could see a MS/MX with same tech getting a charge in less than 5 mins from a supercharger and be on the road as fast or faster than an ICE. Now that would be a Real status quo shaker!

Jolinar | 3 augusti 2014

Who'd like AWD Model S? :-)

Brian H | 3 augusti 2014

Wow! Really let the hounds out with that one. Buzz and free publicity, anyone? There's a tanker-load to spare over here!

Remnant | 4 augusti 2014

@ AlMc (August 2, 2014)

<< Federal Government/Armed services contract for EVs >>

One cannot make expeditionary forces rely on foreign grids and slow recharging, so they would have to carry humongous supercharging generators along with the BEVs, which might be expensive and impractical.

Armed services probably need hybrids, not mere BEVs, unless range extenders and fast recharging become available on-board the BEVs.

risingsun | 4 augusti 2014

My guess, sex robot.

holidayday | 4 augusti 2014

I think the new thing will be a search feature. Right here on the forum!

Anemometer | 4 augusti 2014

Forward firing EMP? To diable lane hogggers and allow the active cruise control to reach maximum speed sooner?

Smoke machine and oil slick generator to lose tailgaters on tight corners?

Comdey fall off doors as an option for interenet clowns.

Built in bed with electric blanket, coffee machine, toaster and shower on a new strech version.

A weight that spins round and round connected to the generators when the car is parked allowing full charging in 1 day with no A/C input required.

An extendible solar roof, a bit like the Planet solar boat :

5 wheels to reduce drag (one in the nose).

A fax machine.

Light weight plastic school seat option - save 20kg/40lbs per chair on standard leather/electric seats. With reduced sizes for the rears in the 7 seat option. New optional frunk crib for babies.

Anemometer | 4 augusti 2014

Oh, and a spell checkr.

Grinnin'.VA | 4 augusti 2014

@simon_heath | AUGUST 4, 2014

Hilarious! Thanks for a good laugh.

Ron :)

vgarbutt | 6 augusti 2014

How a bout a "portable" Aluminum air Battery good for 300 miles? with a plug in the FRUNK.

grega | 6 augusti 2014

Some interesting ideas :)
Intriguing comment.

It can't be just an improvement to the model S. They can't sell more than they're producing - so increasing demand wouldn't have the value just yet. Future demand is another thing entirely.

I'd also hesitate at better batteries as he'll give away the patents on that right?

Anemometer | 7 augusti 2014

" Yeah. I mean another thing, our CapEx and R&D numbers are better than they appear because there are things you don't know about."

What does that quote actually tell us? Well that they just appear bad, so they've eeen spending money on buying stuff. Why are they better than they appear?

Are the two even linked, CapEx isnt necessarily going on R&D, maybe production setup and tuning.

What that statements alludes to though is something like "well we spent a lot on something, but the results mean we dont need to spend as much now". So financials will get better. So either they reduced costs, improved efficiency or developed something new that has future value.

To be honest it so vague they might have bought a bunch of welding robots, laser cutters or platic moulding machines, or reduced the raw material required in a battery cell , invented a new type of batter, or built their own low cost fuel cell (from work on the space program.) Who knows.

Red Sage ca us | 7 augusti 2014

CapEx -- Capital Expenditure... Equipment, real estate, facilities, acquisitions...

R&D -- Research and Development... Studies, tests, experimentation, verification, refinement...

Yeah. That can take you pretty much anywhere. Tesla Waypoint Supercharger stations... Autopilot cars... Amphibious submersible vehicles... 8th Dimensional Hyperflux Transit...

Hmmm... I wonder how well Elon Musk plays guitar?

Bubba2000 | 7 augusti 2014

A look at the Engineering jobs listed by Tesla:
1. Camera, Radar tech, Autopilot stuff - A lot of jobs in this area. Asking for experienced candidates with MS or PhD.
2. Supercharger, EE type jobs
3. Vehicle Design, testing - all disciplines. Battery, thermal management, testing, etc.

The main jobs out of normal are the auto-pilot type. Overall, Tesla is on big hiring program worldwide. My guess is that Tesla is going to go big into Autopilot. More likely, they will use Google Maps as they are doing now.