Tesla’s Model S and Model X were reportedly unavailable for order in some Asia-Pacific countries, including Australia, Thailand, Singapore, and New Zealand, according to the automaker’s website on Sunday. However, other Tesla models such as the Model 3 and Model Y were still available for purchase in these countries. The reason for the unavailability of the Model S and Model X is yet to be known as Tesla has not yet issued a statement in response to the matter.
Tesla’s deliveries of higher-priced Model S and Model X vehicles slumped by 38% in the January-March quarter despite the company posting record deliveries. To increase demand, Tesla has been aggressively cutting prices for some of its models across global markets as competition among electric-vehicle makers heats up. However, investors are worried about the impact of price cuts on the company’s margins. The unavailability of Model S and Model X in these markets is a setback for Tesla as these vehicles cater to high-end customers, which are a significant revenue source for the company. This move could also give a boost to competitors in these markets who offer high-end electric vehicles.
Tesla’s flagship models, the Model S and Model X, were unavailable for purchase in some Asia-Pacific countries, such as Australia, Thailand, Singapore, and New Zealand, as per Tesla’s website on Sunday. However, the website showed that other models, including Model 3 and Model Y, were still available in these countries. Tesla has not yet provided an explanation for the unavailability of the higher-priced models.
Tesla’s Q1 2023 delivery and production report indicated that the automaker set a new delivery record by selling 422,875 vehicles from January to March, with the Model 3 and Model Y accounting for the bulk of the sales. Conversely, deliveries of the Model S and Model X fell by 38%. The company has been aggressively adjusting the prices of its vehicles this year to bolster demand in the face of fierce competition in the electric vehicle market. During the Q1 2023 earnings call, CEO Elon Musk noted that Tesla could technically sell its cars for little profit today since the vehicles could earn more later, particularly when the company achieves full autonomy. While Tesla has been selling a large number of its Model 3 and Model Y vehicles, the company is still known for its luxury electric vehicles, the Model S and Model X.
“Tesla is in a uniquely strong strategic position. Because we’re the only ones making cars that, technically, we could sell for zero profit for now and then yield actually tremendous economics in the future through autonomy, no one else can do that. I’m not sure how many people will appreciate the profundity of what I’ve just said, but it is extremely significant,” Musk said. The debate on the Tesla Model S’ yoke continued even in competitive racing, with some opting for a traditional steering wheel instead. However, Tesla set a record lap at the Nurburgring with a factory Model S Plaid, seemingly showcasing the yoke’s capabilities. Despite this, consumers showed a preference for a traditional steering wheel, leading to the offer for a round steering wheel retrofit for the Model S and Model X selling out quickly. Tesla has now opted to equip its two flagship vehicles with a conventional steering wheel by default, likely in response to customer feedback.
For those customers who still prefer the steering yoke over a conventional steering wheel on their Model S and Model X, it is now available as an option for an additional $250. It will be interesting to see how many customers opt for the yoke moving forward, especially since Tesla has shown a preference for it in their prototypes, such as the upcoming next-generation Roadster and the Cybertruck.