Going forward, I think Tesla has a short-mid-term problem, or a long-term one if they can't fix it. Early pioneers were willing to wait years to get their Model S, and some had roadsters to tide over the EV fix. However we are moving from pioneers to settlers and I don't think that latter group will have near the patience of the former. Here's a real-world example:
My friend, who reserved a day after we had dsm's party in September, got his 'Finalize' (or whatever, I don't remember what it's called) e-mail a few weeks ago, so his window was running down before the price increase. Believe me, the $2,500 was a non-issue for him. What had become an issue was the detachment. He reserved in September and had no contact until his 'Finalize' e-mail came in late December. He was about to cancel when I got my car and went to his house and let him drive it. That got him re-energized. He now has 'Finalized', but would have cancelled if not for the fortuitous timing of my delivery.
I don't think this is an isolated problem for Tesla. All of us forum junkies have this to keep pumped and connected, but we are what - 25% of reservation holders? Certainly not much more? All those others drop cash and then get lonely. I think they are losing reservations because of it. We're in a click and ship world. So what's the fix?
I think more cars on the road will help, that Model S won't be 'out of sight-out of mind' as much. Vicarious fix.
I think more showrooms/galleries where you can get your Tesla fix are critical. They now have the dual purpose of attracting new potential buyers, but almost as importantly, keeping existing reservation holders. Test drive/cool gear fix.
They have to rethink production - With global deliveries in 2013, I wouldn't be surprised if they need to smash through 20,000/yr. Double it. Seriously. Worldwide orders are exceeding 400/week right now. They need to exceed it just to catch up. Real fix.
I think they need to have a process where they are connecting monthly to reservation holders. Each contact needs to meaningful and different, headed toward the end game. Which needs to be...
I think they need to manage the process down to 3-4 months from hitting 'Reserve' to hitting the accelerator.
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