Elon Musk says Tesla will probably be producing 20 million cars per year by 2030

Elon Musk

Elon Musk has some predictions about the electric car market, and — surprise — they’re quite optimistic.

On Monday, the Tesla CEO took to Twitter to say he thinks that, in seven years, 30 million new electric vehicles will be produced per year. In fact, it may even happen faster: “Six years maybe. Five years is possible, but unlikely,” Musk tweeted.

A couple of readers misunderstood the comment thinking that Tesla alone will be producing this many cars, but Musk was quick to correct them.

“That’s total market, not all Tesla. We do see Tesla reaching 20M vehicles/year probably before 2030, but that requires consistently excellent execution,” he tweeted.

Note that the time frames are different; 30 million new electric cars per year by 2027, but 20 million new electric Teslas per year “before 2030.” This makes it hard to do direct comparisons, but Musk obviously foresees Tesla growing much faster than the entire global electric car industry put together. For reference, 2.1 million electric cars were sold globally in 2019, with Tesla alone selling 367,500 vehicles that year.

Regardless of what others do, Tesla has a long way to go before reaching the 20-million-per-year figure. In the second quarter of 2020, the company produced a little more than 82,000 vehicles, or 328,000 on a yearly basis. The next quarter might be the best the company’s ever had in terms of production; Musk himself hinted at that in an email to Tesla employees last week.

Most Tesla cars are still quite pricey. To be able to produce (and sell) 20 million cars per year, Tesla will have to start selling cheaper cars, and the company is already working on it. At its Battery Day event last week, Musk said it plans to launch a $25,000 electric vehicle in the next three years (currently, the cheapest car Tesla sells is the $38,000 Model 3).

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