Tesla expects the electric SUV to become its best-selling vehicle. Car buyers in the United States are increasingly choosing SUVs over sedans.
One of reason electric vehicles haven’t taken off is because most of them have been available only in sedan models, said Michelle Krebs, senior analyst for AutoTrader. Electric vehicles represent just over 1% of new car sales in the United States.
“It really hasn’t been in a body style that people are buying,” she said. “The only one out there now is the Model X. But that won’t be the case for long.”
CEO Elon Musk is clearly counting on big things for the Model Y.
If his figures are correct, the Model Y will have a chance to become the bestselling SUV of any kind — gas or electric — in the United States, a title currently held by the Toyota Rav 4.
The Model Y unveiling can’t come soon enough for Tesla, which had a really bad past six weeks.
- The SEC asked that Musk be charged with contempt.
- Tesla’s chief financial officer and chief counsel left the company
- Consumer Reports removed its “recommended” rating from the Model 3
- Tesla shut most of its stores only to backtrack on those plans two weeks later
- Musk warned investors Tesla would lose money in the first quarter
- Tesla’s second-largest shareholder suggested it might be better off without Musk as CEO
- Tesla repaid $920 million in debt with cash rather than stock, renewing cash crunch fears
Tesla’s stock is down 10% since February 5.
It could use the excitement of the Model Y unveiling to change the conversation and reverse its fortunes — and the direction of its stock.