Just like Apple’s big Worldwide Developer Conference is a must-attend event for any Apple geek or hardcore coder, so any Tesla event at its Hawthorne Design Studio is for Tesla customers, fans and shareholders.
Tesla Motors’ next big event, scheduled for March 31, is no exception. There, Tesla Motors [NASDAQ:TSLA] CEO Elon Musk will unveil the Tesla Model 3 electric car for the first time, a car which is expected to enter production in 2018 as a 2019 model year car, offer at least 200 miles of range per charge, and come with a $35,000 pre-incentive price tag.
As such, it will be the first Tesla electric car that many will be able to buy.
Consequently, there’s a lot of excitement in the electric car world over just what we’ll see on March 31. And with Tesla sending out invites to Tesla Model S Referral Program winners last week, we’ve seen a whole host of different people pleading for tickets online in an attempt to get to see the Model 3 reveal first-hand.
But even as fan sites like the Tesla Motors Club forum are collating lists of people willing to be +1 guests for those lucky enough to have been invited, it seems very few folks have actually been invited to the Model 3 event. So much so that there are rumors flying around suggesting Tesla CEO Elon Musk is hand-picking a small guest list of folks to attend the event.
As our friends over at Electrek report, there’s even a thread at the TMC forums detailing one owner’s attempt to try and get an invite from a Tesla sales representative. A Los Angeles local, the customer in question said that they have ordered two Tesla cars over the years, and were told by a Tesla representative that they “had no way of getting you tickets to this event.”
“From what I was told, it will be a small group of people selected by Elon and his immediate team,” the representative told the customer.
After posting his experience, other owners jumped in on the thread sharing their own attempts to get an invite. One owner, who has purchased seven Tesla electric cars over the years, said that he had no invite either, while another joked that “I hear one has to buy at least 100 Model S’s and own at least $10 million in TSLA to get an invite.”
Despite the obvious disappointment at not being invited to Los Angeles this time, the thread is lighthearted and not a single person posting seems offended. Like everyone else, most say they’ll just watch the whole thing take place on YouTube or some other live streaming platform.
As Electrek’s Fred Lambert astutely points out, the lack of information and apparent lack of invitees at this stage surrounding the Model 3 event isn’t exactly unusual. Traditionally, Tesla has preferred to keep both the media and its fans in the dark until the very last minute, often not even confirming an event is taking place until a week or so before it is scheduled. The fact that Tesla has given more than a month’s notice that the Model 3 reveal is taking place on March 31 is most unusual.
What does this all mean? Well, in Tesla time — a unit we’re not entirely sure anyone but Elon Musk can legitimately measure due to its wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey nature –the Model 3 event is still an enternity away. A lot can happen between now and then, and a lot of invites can be sent that to date have not.
As for the Tesla representative quoted on the Tesla Motors Club forum? Like other high-profile companies, Tesla likes to keep things on a need-to-know basis among its staff, so it’s possible that the response given was a polite way of saying “I don’t know what’s going on.”
At the same time however, it’s also possible that previous events — which caused both traffic chaos and the ire of certain attendees — were just too big and unwieldy for Tesla to sensibly contain, prompting a re-think and a downsizing for its latest reveal.
Then there’s the costs associated with putting on a big event attended by thousands of people. While holding a small select gathering where things can be streamed online is relatively cost-effective, doing so with thousands of attendees is not only a strain on Tesla’s purse strings but it’s also something of a logistical nightmare.
Either way, whatever happens on March 31, you can be sure we’ll be covering it here at Transport Evolved. If like most Tesla fans, you haven’t managed to score an invite yet, pull up a chair and join us for a livestream covering the event from afar. We think you’ll have just as much fun.
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