He explained that while Tesla‘s future demand was relatively solid, other manufacturers were facing more uncertainties over who will be buying their vehicles in the near term. Last month auto sales fell 3 percent despite low unemployment, lower gas prices and higher consumer confidence.
“We’re more optimistic … we think the Model 3, when you think about it, 400,000-plus standing orders for vehicles, and manufacturers all across the country (are) wondering who’s in line for their vehicles,” he said, adding, “(It’s) Tesla with the clear advantage, in our view.”
Last year, reports said Tesla received 400,000 pre-orders for Model 3, and the very first unit for delivery was set to be built later this week. It will be delivered with 29 others at the end of July. The vehicle is selling for $35,000, according to Tesla’s website, which suggests a potential future sales value of about $14 billion.
But Albertine said there is still risk associated with the car-maker and its ability to meet deliveries, including those of the Model 3.
“One of the interesting omissions from this most recent quarterly delivery count (is that) they typically tell us what vehicles were in transit,” he said. “Instead, this time they talked about vehicles they were using for their loaner fleets and to sort of get out there to advertise the higher-end Model Xs.”
He added that while Tesla was not necessarily out of the woods, it was holding up better than their peers.
Albertine said, “53 percent year-over-year growth is pretty good, so they’re holding up better than the average automaker right now, but certainly, they’re going to have to continue this run rate and I think there’s some risks to that.”
— CNBC’s Phil LeBeau contributed to this report.