Visitors view the Telsa Cybertruck at a museum in Los Angeles.
Robyn Beck / AFP via Getty Images
Tesla CEO Elon Musk has been tweeting ahead of his company’s earnings report expected after the closing bell Wednesday. The tweet might be a preview of what he talks about in the conference call following the company’s fourth-quarter earnings print.
Musk tweeted that he’s been driving the Cybertruck around Austin, Texas, and he likes it.
Austin is home to the new Tesla manufacturing facility that will eventually produce the Cybertruck. That plant also will produce Model Y crossover vehicles. The Model Y will be the first priority as the new plant starts up in coming days.
Austin also is now where Tesla headquarters are located, and Musk is there not only to drive Cybertrucks, but to speak on the company’s fourth-quarter earnings conference call.
In 2021, Musk said he wouldn’t always participate in quarterly earnings conference calls and the CEO skipped Tesla’s third-quarter call. He’s back on the call Wednesday to give a product update to Tesla investors. Cybertruck, as well as Austin production, are likely to come up on the call. Investors expect Austin to start producing Model Y vehicles any day now. Cybertruck timing is less certain. Investors expect that vehicle in late 2022 or early 2023.
As for earnings — the primary reason for the coming report and conference call — Wall Street projects about $2.36 a share in earnings from $17.1 billion in sales, according to FactSet.
Cybertruck is an important vehicle for the company. About 20% of all new light vehicles sold in the U.S. each year are trucks. An electric truck opens a substantial new market for Tesla.
The electric truck market is going to be competitive though. By the time Cybertruck hits the road, there will be electric truck offerings from Ford Motor (F), General Motors (GM) and Rivian Automotive (RIVN).
Coming into Wednesday trading, Tesla stock has fallen about 13% year to date, about the same as the drop in the Nasdaq Composite Index.
Shares are up more than 4% in premarket trading Wednesday. The tweet probably didn’t send shares higher. The overall market is rallying. S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average futures rose about 1.5% and 1.1%, respectively.
Write to Al Root at email@example.com