Automobile: Tesla sells nearly a million cars despite the shortage of electronic chips

At a time when the global automotive sector remains hit hard by the Covid crisis with sales at half mast or with shortages of electronic chips, Tesla is walking against the tide. The American electric vehicle manufacturer delivered more than 936,000 cars, all models combined, in 2021, which represents a growth of 87.4% compared to the previous year. The manufacturer is thus doing much better than the objective announced last January, to increase its deliveries by 50% on average per year for several years.

In detail, the group, which chose to move its headquarters from Palo Alto (California) to Austin (Texas), sold 911,208 copies of its 3 and Y models and 24,964 vehicles of its luxury S and X models, sold respectively 90,000 and 100,000 dollars each.

To achieve this performance, Tesla, unlike other manufacturers in the world, managed to ignore global logistical problems. Elon Musk had indicated that he was able to circumvent a good part of the shortage of semiconductors by using new chip models but also by rewriting the software accordingly.

The group has also benefited from the enthusiasm for electric vehicles by individuals, rental companies and businesses alike. In October, Tesla registered with a mega order for 100,000 electric vehicles from rental company Hertz to be delivered by the end of 2022.

A company valued at 1,000 billion dollars

However, this exponential growth is not a long calm river. The builder has to deal with quality issues. In April, Tesla brakes made headlines in China: a disgruntled customer made a splash at the Shanghai show, protesting the allegedly faulty brake system of a vehicle in which relatives had been injured. The Autopilot driver assistance system is also under investigation by NHTSA after a series of crashes. The fact that Tesla is testing new driving assistance features in real conditions with ordinary drivers without having specific authorization is also fueling controversy.

Recently, Tesla was also forced to deactivate the option that allowed passengers to play video games in a car in circulation. In question, a complaint from a Tesla owner, who protested against this feature. “How is it that a manufacturer is allowed to display videos that clearly interfere with concentration and take up two-thirds of the screen that the driver needs to have all the information about his vehicle? he had asked. On the other hand, it was also easy for the driver to play while driving by ignoring a warning message.

Added to this are mass recalls of vehicles to the garage. If this isn’t unique to Tesla, it could point to a future flaw in the production system. Recently, the automaker issued a recall of nearly 500,000 vehicles in the United States and 200,000 in China due to issues with vehicle trunks. Tesla had already recalled 285,000 cars in China in June after an anomaly in its assisted driving software, and a few thousand Model 3s and Model Ys in the United States to inspect and tighten, or even replace, bolts in the brake calipers.

From the perspective of investors and traders, the good news of Tesla deliveries is a clear bullish factor for the stock, especially since it has corrected significantly over the past week. If the financial results of Tesla are expected on February 2, this commercial success allows the company to appear in the very closed circle of the club of groups valued at more than 1,000 billion dollars on the stock market.

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