Tesla’s Musk: “We don’t have inventory.” Consumer Reports: “Yes, you do.” Musk: “Making cars is really hard.”

Making cars is so hard

Making cars is so hard

Amazing how much buzz one of those usually dry notes of a Wall Street analyst can create: The story of the possibly 3,000 unsold Tesla cars, based on research of Merrill Lynch analyst John Lovallo, has thrown the Daily Kanban server into a hyperloop. Up since last Wednesday, the story already bested the Girls of the Tokyo Auto Salon, and this morning, it passed our scoop of Johan de Nysschen abandoning Detroit and moving Cadillac to Manhattan. Only our maiden story of sockpuppeteering GM staffers found more readers – over the time of more than a year. The Tesla story has been up only 5 days.

Thankfully, the Daily Kanban server is not as flimsy as it used to be when we started, and it digested the onslaught without a hiccup. A hot standby in an undisclosed location was never used.

The story, or rather its source, is not without critics. Forbes, where just about anyone can publish, as long as they are content with charging the customary blogger fee ($ zero) for the contents, said that “Lovallo came just short of accusing Musk and company of outright lying during Tesla’s third-quarter conference call.” Then it proceeded “Taking apart the brokerage’s takedown of Tesla.” It didn’t matter. Google “Tesla unsold cars” to appreciate the extent of the carnage. [Continue Reading]

That car-filled test track actually was empty, each time Google came checking

Sunderland, 12/31/2001: No cars

Sunderland, 12/31/2001: No cars

Zerohedge can be an insightful and though-provoking site, but since Saturday, it is hobbling around with huge self-inflicting holes in its lower extremities, courtesy of well-aimed shots into their own feet. The site ran a story titled “Where the World’s Unsold Cars Go To Die.” The story went viral, and it was bunk. In the meantime, it has been debunked by everybody from Jalopnik’s Matt Hardigree to the Dailykanban’s Ed Niedermeyer. A day after its publication, the story also landed on Snopes, where it belongs. This did not stop sundry other sites from taking the story at face value. The debacle underlines the importance of what I – mostly in vain – tried to drum into my charges during my stint at the helm of (supposedly) Thetruthaboutcars.com: Never believe anything. Always check up on the story. Always try to get as close as possible to the actual source. You will be amazed of what you can find sometimes. Or in this case, what you can’t find. [Continue Reading]